The concept of a geostrophic point vortex results from incorporating the geostrophic approximation in the equations of motion of the one-layer homogeneous atmosphere with a free surface. A consistent, systematic approximation procedure is used, yielding higher-order approximations without requiring additional physical assumptions. Application to the prediction of hurricane tracking and upper-air cyclogenesis is discussed.

This paper is based on Report IMM–NYU 226, “On the Theory of Large-Scale Nearly-Horizontal Motions in the Atmosphere” (February 1956) written under the auspices of the Geophysical Research Directorate, U. S. Air Force Cambridge Research Center and the U. S. Office of Naval Research.

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