GG 140 - Lecture 14 - Coriolis Force and Storms
Lecture 14 - Coriolis Force and Storms
Large scale air motion in the atmosphere occurring sufficiently above the surface is in geostrophic balance. Areas of high and low pressure anomalies in the atmosphere are surrounded by rotating flow caused by the balance between the pressure gradient and Coriolis forces. The direction of rotation around these pressure anomalies reverses between the northern and southern hemispheres due to the reversal in sign of the Coriolis force across the equator. This can be seen in the reverse direction of the spiraling of clouds in satellite images of hurricanes in the northern and southern hemispheres. Convective storms are also discussed.
Essentials of Meteorology, Ch. 10, 11