What Are Cyclones and Anticyclones

Cyclones are characterized by causing a large accumulation of clouds, strong winds, storms, rain and low temperatures due to the scarce passage of sunlight to the earth’s surface.

Cyclones acquire more energy from the condensation of humid air, which is why they are responsible for the formation of hurricanes, typhoons and tropical storms.

The anticyclone is a region of the earth’s surface whose atmospheric pressure is greater than that of the surrounding air. On the contrary, a cyclone is the meteorological phenomenon that occurs in regions whose atmospheric pressure or storm is lower than the air around it.

What is a Cyclone

It is called a cyclone natural phenomenon formed by strong winds that advance in a circular way on themselves and that are generated in areas where atmospheric pressure is low.

Likewise, the term cyclone is also used to refer to the atmospheric regions of low pressure or stormin which abundant rainfall is produced accompanied by strong winds and, in some cases, an anticyclone.

Cyclones originate in those areas whose atmospheric pressure is lower than the one around them, generally on tropical coasts and, thanks to scientific and technological advances, it is possible to spot and follow their path from the moment it forms until it dissipates. .

Therefore, cyclones can be predicted, which makes it possible to alert the population that will be affected so that they take the necessary protection and prevention measures, since, after the passage of a cyclone, there are usually material losses, destruction and floods that affect many people.

In general, the cyclone is characterized by forming a abnormal concentration of clouds accompanied by intense winds that rotate in circles on itself. This meteorological phenomenon is usually accompanied by torrential rains, sometimes with electric shocks and, in the sea, waves and strong tides.

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cyclone types

There are different types of cyclone which can be classified based on the strength of the wind, which is usually around more than 100 kilometers per hour.

tropical cyclone

The tropical cyclone, tropical storm, hurricane or typhoon, generally forms in the oceans whose hot waters generate an unstable atmosphere and give rise to the low pressure system, from which the cyclone takes energy from the processes of evaporation and condensation of the air wet.

It is characterized by having a swirl shape with a center or eye of low pressure. Likewise, it generates strong winds and rains that are dangerous because they can reach a speed of between 120 km/h and 300 km/h, so the cyclone usually destroys what it gets in its path.

For this reason they are classified into five categories according to wind speed. In the northern hemisphere the cyclone rotates counterclockwise and in the southern hemisphere it rotates the other way around.

extratropical cyclone

The extratropical cyclone forms in the mid-latitudes between 30° and 60° from the equator. This cyclone is made up of two or more air masses, so it is a phenomenon that is related to one or more fronts.

The extratropical cyclone is associated with the low pressure system that exists between the tropics and the poles. Specialists have determined that extratropical cyclones are unique and unrepeatable since they can vary due to the contrast of hot or cold air masses.

subtropical cyclone

This cyclone is generally formed in latitudes close to the equator, in addition, it has characteristics of both a tropical cyclone and an extratropical cyclone.

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polar cyclone

This cyclone is characterized by having a diameter of approximately or greater than 1000 km. It has a shorter life than the tropical cyclone, it develops faster and the wind force is established in 24 hours.


A mesocyclone is an air vortex that measures between 2 and 10 km in diameter and forms within convective storms, that is, a rotating storm that can even form a tornado.

What is an Anticyclone

The anticyclone is called region whose atmospheric pressure is greater than that of the air around it.

The anticyclone is a Meteorological phenomenon that generates good weather with clear skiess, either with cold days or hot days and, on few occasions, it occurs with mist or fog.

This is possible because the air of the anticyclone descends from the highest layers of the atmosphere to the ground, which prevents clouds or rain from forming. Said air descends forming a small constant angle or curve, which can be traced on a weather map.

Now, the anticyclones that occur in the northern hemisphere are characterized by the fact that the air circulates in the same direction as clockwise, but in the southern hemisphere the air circulates in reverse.

Types of anticyclone

There are two types of anticyclone according to their behavior and temperatures.

Thermal anticyclone: It is an anticyclone in which an air mass descends because it is colder than its surroundings. That is, the air descends due to cooling, which increases atmospheric pressure and reduces temperatures in the lower atmospheric layers. The result is a sunny, dry and cold day.

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Dynamic anticyclone: In this anticyclone, the air mass descends as a result of being pushed towards the ground when cold air collides with tropical air. The result is a clear, dry, sunny and hot day.

On the other hand, it is worth mentioning the Azores anticyclone which is a dynamic anticyclone located in the center of the North Atlantic. This anticyclone determines, both in Portugal and in Spain, the hot, dry and sunny days in the summer season.