WX MODEL 8: Bombogenesis


Bombogenesis is a very rapid developing low pressure mid-latitude cyclone system. To be a bomb, the low pressure needs to reduce in pressure by at least 24 millibars in a 24 hour period. One place these systems can develop is in the cool season near the east coast of the United States. The warm ocean waters of the Gulf Stream add latent instability to the system while the temperature difference (thermal gradient) between a polar and subtropical air mass adds energy to the system.

The image below shows a bombing system off the east coast of the United States. This particular low pressure system drops in central pressure by over 24 millibars in just 12 hours! The strength of the system is shown by the low central pressure (974 mb) and the packed isobars around the low pressure. These systems can produce very heavy rain/snow, strong winds, huge ocean waves and coastal erosion.