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How Significant are Low-Level Flow Patterns in Tropical Cyclone Genesis over the Western North Pacific?
  • Published Date:
    2020
  • Source:
    Monthly Weather Review, 148(2), 559–576
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How Significant are Low-Level Flow Patterns in Tropical Cyclone Genesis over the Western North Pacific?
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  • Description:
    The low-level flow pattern characteristics of the tropical cyclone genesis (TCG) environment over the western North Pacific (WNP) were investigated not only for the periods during which TCG occurred, but also for the periods during which no TCG occurred. The flow patterns investigated were the shear line (SL), confluence region (CR), and easterly wave (EW) patterns. Although these flow patterns are recognized as favorable environmental conditions for TCG, their general characteristics, such as the climatological horizontal distribution, have not been previously investigated and there has been no comparison of the significance of the TCG cases to the climatological mean. We examined flow patterns using flow pattern indices defined by the modified semiobjective analysis method. SL and CR were broadly distributed over the WNP east of the Philippines during the boreal summer season. There was a peak in the EW from summer to autumn and it was distributed in a band running in an east–west direction at a lower latitude. Flow pattern indices of all three flow patterns gradually intensified until the TCG date was reached. The SL and EW indices became more intense compared to the climatological mean one day before the TCG, while that of the CR did not exceed the climatological mean. TCG occurred at the eastern edge of the area with a high genesis potential index and relative humidity and a weak vertical shear over flow patterns. This determination of the general characteristics of favorable flow pattern conditions improves our understanding of the TCG process.
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