The Atlantic hurricane season is officially beginning on 1st June, but how do tropical systems form?
Tropical storms develop into Hurricanes, Typhoons, and Cyclones, depending on their location, but how do they initially form?
These types of storms require a lot of heat and usually form close to the equator, where sea temperatures are at least 26°C. Warm waters then heat the air above it, causing the air to rise rapidly. This is when it is often called a tropical wave.
As the air rises, it condenses into cumulonimbus clouds and if conditions are just right, the clouds start to spin, creating an intense area of low pressure.
This area will suck in the surrounding air causing very strong winds. Once the winds reach 39 mph, a tropical storm is formed.
As the winds continue to intensify, fed by the warm waters underneath, the tropical storm can intensify into a hurricane, cyclone, or typhoon. Once the storm moves over land, however, it starts to lose energy and fades away.
The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale is used to categorise hurricanes based on the intensity of their winds.
With excitement and energy ramping up in the Atlantic ahead of the season's start, track the tropics with our interactive WeatherRadar.