Tropical Cyclones Current Affairs

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Depression in Bay of Bengal named “Tropical Cyclone Maarutha”

A deep depression in Bay of Bengal has intensified into a tropical cyclone named Maarutha. This cyclone is expected to hit Myanmar on 17 April 2017 and bring heavy rains in parts of that country. Tropical Cyclone Maarutha is the first named storm of 2017 Northern Hemisphere tropical cyclone season.

About Tropical Cyclones

A Cyclone represents a rotating, organized system of clouds and thunderstorms that originates over tropical or subtropical waters and has closed low-level circulation. Most large scale cyclonic circulations are centered on areas of low atmospheric pressure.  Based on their latitude, the cyclones may be tropical cyclones or temperate cyclones (extra-tropical cyclones).

The tropical cyclones rotate anti-clockwise in the northern hemisphere and are classified into three types viz. Tropical Depression  maximum sustained winds of 38 mph or less); Tropical Storm (maximum sustained winds of 39 to 73 mph); hurricane (maximum sustained winds of 74 mph) and major hurricane (maximum sustained winds of 111 mph). Hurricanes are called typhoons in western North Pacific, while similar storms in the Indian Ocean and South Pacific Ocean are called cyclones.

Tropical Cyclones in Indian Ocean

Tropical cyclones between east of the Horn of Africa and west of the Malay Peninsula are most common from April to December, with peaks in May and November in the Indian Ocean. Vardah was the strongest cyclone of the 2016 North Indian Ocean cyclone season. The other cyclones in 2016 season included Cyclonic Storm Roanu, Cyclonic Storm Kyant and Cyclonic Storm Nada. Cyclone Maarutha is the first tropical cyclone of 2017 North Indian Ocean cyclone season. It started forming under the influence of a persistent area of convection in South Bay of Bengal on April 13, 2017 and has been recently classified as a Cyclonic storm. After giving heavy rainfall in Sri Lanka and Andaman & Nicobar Islands, it is expected to make a landfall in Myanmar in next two three days.

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Tropical Cyclonic Storm Vardah to hit Andhra Pradesh

The tropical cyclonic storm Vardah over southeast Bay of Bengal is expected to hit Andhra Pradesh coast between Nellore and Kakinada. It is the third cyclonic storm of the season after Cyclone Kyant and Nada, that were formed during the Northeast Monsoon season.

Formation

It was created as depression (low pressure) over Andaman Sea and later slightly intensified further as cyclonic storm. The reason for the intensification can be attributed to warm sea surface temperatures of Bay of Bengal and longer sea travel. Since then, the tropical cyclonic storm Vardah has moved north-northwestwards with a speed of 10 kmph about 990 km southeast of Visakhapatnam and 250 km west-northwest of Port Blair.

Intensification

The system is very likely to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm. However, there is possibility of slight weakening of the system before landfall. It may result into moderate rainfall at many places with isolated heavy falls over coastal Andhra Pradesh. Squally winds speed reaching 35-45 kmph gusting to 55 kmph would prevail over Andaman and Nicobar Islands & adjoining sea areas for some time. Fishermen have been advised not to venture into sea along and off Andaman Islands and off Andhra Pradesh coast and adjoining sea areas.

vardah

 

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Cyclonic storm ROANU hits eastern coast of India

Cyclonic Storm Roanu, an active tropical cyclone in the Bay of Bengal has hit the eastern coast of India. It is the first tropical cyclone of the annual cyclone season.

Roanu originated from a deep depression (low pressure) area that formed south of Sri Lanka and later gradually drifted north and intensified into a cyclonic storm.

Key facts

  • In its early stages, the storm was responsible heavy rainfall in Sri Lanka causing flooding in its northern parts.
  • It also brought torrential rainfall to the Indian states of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh and is also affecting Odisha and West Bengal.
  • It is forecast to make a landfall on the coast of Bangladesh.

Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted that the Roanu Cyclone is likely to intensify into a severe cyclonic storm. It also has issued heavy to very heavy rainfall warning to coastal areas of Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and coastal West Bengal under the influence of the cyclonic storm coupled with gusty winds speeds reaching 90-100 kmph.

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