A bomb cyclone struck Colorado and surrounding states yesterday, and is moving east across the central US.
The intense winter storm grounded more than 1,300 flights, left more than 84,000 Colorado residents without power, and killed at least one person.
“Bomb cyclone” is a meteorological term that forecasters use to describe an intense, hurricane-like storm that builds at mid-latitudes.
When a cyclone undergoes “bombogenesis,” that means the storm system’s pressure drops very fast, leading it to intensify.
Bomb cyclones typically form over the ocean, but they can also form over land, which happened in this case.
Colorado Governor Jared Polis declared a state of emergency yesterday due to a giant winter storm that struck the state.
Meteorologists have labeled the storm a “bomb cyclone.”
The bad weather has since started moving east across the central US, with blizzard conditions and hurricane-force winds wreaking havoc across the Rockies. Colorado National Guard troops reportedly had to rescue stranded drivers from their cars, and more than 430,000 Colorado residents lost power.
Across the US, 1,300 flights were grounded because of the weather, and Denver International Airport shut down on Wednesday.
The term “bomb cyclone” is not a hyperbole meant to frighten the public. Rather, it’s a scientific phrase that refers to a swirling, hurricane-like storm that rapidly intensifies over land due to a significant drop in air pressure over 24 hours. Here’s what to know about the phenomenon.
Cyclones versus hurricanes
A hurricane is easily recognizable by its “eye”: the circular chunk of low pressure that sits at the heart of a swirling storm. These eyes tend to be somewhere around 40 miles wide. Hurricanes form in the tropics surrounding the equator, gain strength from warm tropical ocean waters, and bring lots of precipitation.
But sometimes, storms of that shape — called cyclones — can form north of …read more
Source:: Business Insider