Nomenclature of Cyclones

cycloneIn meteorology, a cyclone is an area of closed, circular fluid motion rotating in the same direction as the Earth. This is usually characterized by inward spiralling winds that rotate anti-clockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere of the Earth. Most large-scale cyclonic circulations are centered on areas of low atmospheric pressure. Cyclone Hudhud: Cyclone Hudhud pounded the coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha with heavy rain and winds of almost 200 kmph on Sunday. So far, it has claimed 21 lives. The worst-hit Visakhapatnam district accounts for 15 deaths. About the nomenclature: For years cyclones that originated in the north Indian ocean were anonymous affairs. In 2004,an international panel on tropical cyclones led by the World Meteorological Organisation sat down and decided to name their cyclones as a committee in the spirit of co-operation and consensus. Eight countries – India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Sri Lanka and Thailand – took part. They came up with a list of 64 names- eight names from each country – for upcoming cyclones. Last year, Phailin, the name for a massive cyclone which battered India’s south-eastern coast and led to the evacuation of more than 500,000 people, was provided by Thailand. The last cyclone in the region was Nanauk in June, a name contributed by Myanmar. So this time, following the alphabetical order, it was Oman’s turn. The name Hudhud in Arabic refers to the Hoopoe bird. The Hudhud, or hoopoe bird, is an exotic creature noticed for its distinctive crown of feathers and is widespread in Europe, Asia and North Africa. Hudhud1hudhudThe list goes alphabetically, according to each country. Next time a cyclone hits the region, it’s Pakistan’s turn to give it a name. It will be called Nilofar. Last time Pakistan named a cyclone Nilam in November 2012. Some of the Indian names in the queue are the more prosaic Megh (Cloud), Sagar (Ocean) and Vayu (Wind). A name helps people and the media to identify each cyclone and become more aware of its implications. It also does not confuse people if there is more than one tropical cyclone brewing in the region. May God protect people from all these devastations!

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About Dr. Nikhil Aggarwal

I am a doctor by profession, resident of Gurgaon, Haryana. I want to enjoy every moment of my life and face the challenges as they come. In my view traveling is one of the best ways to detoxify our mind, body & soul. Wherever I go I try to explore the destination as much as possible. Recently, I have started writing and sharing my experiences & knowledge through my blog.
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