Q:

How does a typhoon develop?

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Quick Answer

A typhoon develops from the combination of a warm sea surface, atmospheric turmoil, intense humidity, enough Coriolis force to create a low pressure center, low vertical wind shear, and an already existing low level focus or disturbance. Typhoons occur between December and May, and most happen in the northwestern Pacific Ocean. They are the most severe on the tropical cyclone scale.

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How does a typhoon develop?
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Full Answer

Although Japan and China experience typhoons, the Philippines are impacted the most. In total, 18 countries are in danger of typhoons. Wind speeds of a typhoon start at 74 mph, though the United States' Joint Typhoon Warning Center only counts a storm as a typhoon when wind speeds reach 150 mph. Some countries, such as Hong Kong, further break down the designation of typhoons based on their wind speeds.

Since 1959, there have been 1,419 typhoons, averaging about 27 a year. The months with the highest rates of typhoons are August and October. The average typhoon is 40,000 times more powerful than the average thunderstorm. Typhoons travel in several directions, including north and west. They rotate counter-clockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and in the opposite direction in the Southern Hemisphere. Typhoons dissipate when they reach an area of cool dry air, encounter a large land region, or move over an area of cool ocean water.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    How does a typhoon form?

    A:

    Typhoons form in the tropical oceans when areas of high pressure rush toward areas of low pressure, which creates wind. When the storm begins to rotate and organize around an "eye" of low pressure, it is well on its way to becoming a typhoon. Storms are categorized as typhoons when they reach wind speeds of 74 miles per hour.

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  • Q:

    When did the typhoon hit the Philippines?

    A:

    Typhoon Rammasun hit the Philippines on July 16, 2014. The typhoon killed at least 38 people in the Philippines and killed more than 100 people total. It caused more than $7 billion in total damages.

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  • Q:

    What causes a thunderstorm?

    A:

    Thunderstorms are formed by the combination of three main ingredients: moisture, unstable atmospheric air and an external acting force making the damp and volatile air rise upward. Thunderstorms come in several different categories, which are orographic, air mass and frontal. They form above land and sea, varying in duration and intensity.

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  • Q:

    What is a typhoon?

    A:

    A typhoon is the same thing as a hurricane or cyclone. They are called different names depending on where they occur. Typhoons are the name used for tropical cyclones in the Northwest Pacific, specifically to the west of 180 degrees on a map, where the Japanese Meteorological Agency tracks them.

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