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Insider Blog: What is Bombogenesis, and how does this Nor’easter qualify?

While we have our own storm system to talk about close to home, we're also tracking a nor'easter just off the east coast.

Named for the harsh northeast winds they often bring to the coast, nor'easter's can be costly; bringing wind and flood damage with them.

The storm we are talking about tonight has already hammered communities in the northeast with wind gusts greater than 75 miles per hour on Wednesday. This low pressure system also happens to be a bomb cyclone, or a storm that has undergone bombogenesis.

This means the pressure has dropped by one Bergeron -- or nearly 24 millibars -- in 24 hours. That's a difference comparable to a category one hurricane turning into a category three.

I say nearly 24 millibars because that number is based on a latitude of 60 degrees north. This storm underwent bombogenesis south of that line near 42 degrees north, where a pressure drop of only 18 to 19 millibars is required. This storm dropped 22 millibars in 24 hours, making it a bomb cyclone. The National Weather Service's Weather Prediction Center recently explained this on Twitter.

These storms are known for bringing lots of wind, rain, and snow, -- and it certainly has left numerous storm reports scattered across New England.

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John Ross


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