Hurricane Vocab: 12 Terms You Need To Know

How's Your Weather Vocabulary?

 UPDATED 9:44 PM HST Oct 24, 2011

Many South Floridians are hoping for a quiet end to hurricane season, but just in case we get another storm late in the game, it's important to stay in the know with these key terms.

How is your weather vocabulary? Do you know what convection is? Wind shear? And what the heck is a trough?

The team polled those in the know over in the WPBF 25 Severe Weather office, and they gave us a neat little cheat sheet to help you navigate through the tropical terminology:

Center of Circulation -- The area of low pressure in a tropical cyclone.

Computer Model -- Mathematical computations that predict the future track of storm.

Convection -- Storms.

Cyclonic -- The counter-clockwise spin with a tropical system.

Millibar -- A unit of measure for pressure. The lower the pressure, the more fierce a storm's winds will be.

Outer Bands -- The spirals of rain that wrap around the center of a tropical storm.

Sea Surface Temperatures -- Warm water that is the fuel for the storm.

Stalling -- When a storm stops its forward motion, making the forecast hard to predict.

Trough -- Low pressure, convection, rain.

Vertical Stacking -- Tropical systems need low pressure at the earth's surface, and high pressure in the upper levels. Such conditions keep a storm properly ventilated. If not, it will remain weak.

Water Vapor Imagery -- Functions as a type of X-ray view on our maps. It indicates where dry air is.

Wind Shear -- Winds that change with height that can tear a tropical system apart.

Do you want to print this page now?