News: Cyclone Tauktae, currently centered over Lakshadweep, has intensified into a cyclonic storm. It is likely to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm in the next 24 hours. The word Tauktae has been suggested by Myanmar, which means ‘gecko’, a distinctively vocal lizard, in the Burmese language. The name is the fourth from a new list of 169 names released by the IMD last year.
What are Cyclones?
- Cyclones are rapid inward air circulation around a low-pressure area. The air circulates in an anticlockwise direction in the Northern hemisphere and clockwise in the Southern hemisphere.
- Cyclones are usually accompanied by violent storms and bad weather.
- The word Cyclone is derived from the Greek word Cyclos meaning the coils of a snake. It was coined by Henry Peddington because the tropical storms in the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea appear like coiled serpents of the sea.
Classification of Cyclones:
- There are two types of cyclones:
- Tropical cyclones; and
- Extra Tropical cyclones (also called Temperate cyclones or middle latitude cyclones or Frontal cyclones or Wave Cyclones).
- The World Meteorological Organisation uses the term ‘Tropical Cyclone’ to cover weather systems in which winds exceed ‘Gale Force’ (minimum of 63 km per hour).
- Tropical cyclones develop in the region between the Tropics of Capricorn and Cancer. They are large-scale weather systems developing over tropical or subtropical waters, where they get organized into surface wind circulation.
- Extra tropical cyclones occur in temperate zones and high latitude regions, though they are known to originate in the Polar Regions.
- In India, Tropical cyclones originate over the Bay of Bengal, Arabian Sea and the Indian ocean. These tropical cyclones have very high wind velocity and heavy rainfall and hit the Indian Coastal states of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Odisha and Gujarat (These five states are more vulnerable to cyclone disasters than others in India).