The Structure and Energetics of the Tropical Cyclone II. Dynamics and Energetics

William M. Frank Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado Stage University, Ft. Collins 80523

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Abstract

This study uses the data composited in Paper I to analyze the dynamics and energetics of a mature tropical cyclone in term of budget studies of moist static energy, angular momentum and kinetic energy. Sea surface to air fluxes of moisture and sensible heat are found to be much smaller than the estimates of most previous researchers. Horizontal eddy fluxes of momentum and kinetic energy are substantial at outer radii in the upper troposphere. The Coriolis torque term in the angular momentum equation does not integrate to zero over the large-scale storm circulation but rather becomes a dominant term. Tropical cyclones are net sources of kinetic energy over their large-scale circulations. This probably results from strong transient eddy generation of kinetic energy within the storm.

Abstract

This study uses the data composited in Paper I to analyze the dynamics and energetics of a mature tropical cyclone in term of budget studies of moist static energy, angular momentum and kinetic energy. Sea surface to air fluxes of moisture and sensible heat are found to be much smaller than the estimates of most previous researchers. Horizontal eddy fluxes of momentum and kinetic energy are substantial at outer radii in the upper troposphere. The Coriolis torque term in the angular momentum equation does not integrate to zero over the large-scale storm circulation but rather becomes a dominant term. Tropical cyclones are net sources of kinetic energy over their large-scale circulations. This probably results from strong transient eddy generation of kinetic energy within the storm.

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