Natural disasters

Typhoons

Summary of typhoons

The life cycle of a typhoon is divided into four stages from generation to extinction.
These stages are generation, development, intensification and extinction.

The typhoons that approach and occasionally hit Japan every year are typhoons in the intensification and extinction stages.
A typhoon is generated due to the formation of cumulonimbus clouds in tropical waters where the sea surface temperature is 27 degrees centigrade or higher.
Some cumulonimbus clouds gather and a tropical low pressure area is created.
This stage is called the generation stage.

The central atmospheric pressure decreases in this tropical low pressure area, which develops into a typhoon with maximum wind speeds of 17 meters/s or higher.
The typhoon usually moves westward. This stage is the development stage.
The typhoon gradually intensifies and enters the intensification stage.
In this stage, the typhoon is strongest and moves along the winds that blow around the Pacific High and changes the direction of its movement from north to northeast at around 25 degrees north latitude. With increasing speed, it approaches Japan.

In some cases, intense typhoons hit Japan before decreasing in strength.
Consequently, tremendous damage occurs along and around the path of the typhoon.
In other cases, the typhoon weakens in wind strength and changes into a tropical low pressure storm.

At the sea near North Japan, cold air flows into the center of the typhoon forming a front, and the typhoon changes into an extratropical cyclone.
This is the extinction stage. However, the extratropical cyclone may further develop, so caution is needed.

Click here for the typhoons information video.

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Disaster information from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism of Japan

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