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Wind Movement around pressure systems

  • aob
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aob created the topic: Wind Movement around pressure systems

Hi All,

Apologies about the basic question, whilst reviewing the text on meterology it got me thinking.

I understand the concept of a tangential wind direction either anti-clockwise or clockwise around high and low pressure systems due to coriolis effect, however; if a high pressure system is formed due to the sinking air and a low pressure system is rising air, why then does the surface wind direction not flow in a perpendicular direction from a high pressure system to a low pressure system? I.e the path of least resistance?

Is it that the coriolis effect itself 'twists' the air on descent to cause the circular wind pattern, and the inertia is too great to change direction?


Thanks
Andrew
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bobtait replied the topic: Wind Movement around pressure systems

The air does attempt to flow directly from high to low pressure and that is what would happen if the earth did not rotate. The resulting flow direction is the result of the Corioli's effect and the latitude and the strength of the pressure gradient so it's really quite complex. The end result is a general circulation clockwise about a low and anticlockwise about a high with an 'outflow' at the surface in the case of a high and an 'inflow' at the surface in the case of a low. See pages 20 and 21 of the text.
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