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Weather Glossary - Z

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Zephyr

A light, warm breeze. Derived from Zephryros, the personification by the ancient Greeks of the warm west wind that was thought to prevail around the time of the summer solstice.

Zonal flow

Large-scale atmospheric flow in which the east-west component (i.e., latitudinal) is dominant. The accompanying meridional (north-south) component often is weaker than normal. Compare with meridional flow. Weather systems tend to move past quickly in a zonal flow regime.

Zulu

Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Centred on zero degrees longitude. For scientific purposes this time zone is also known as Universal Time (UTC). All meteorological observations worldwide are reported using this time (for ease of comparison and computation). This timezone is commonly suffixed with 'Z'.

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Weather News

Melbourne hits 42C before cool change as authorities defend 'heat kills' warnings

21:48 EDT

Melburnians — and the world's best tennis players — have battled through temperatures of about 42 degrees Celsius, as energy authorities curtailed some industrial users' power consumption and firefighters across Victoria stood on high alert.

Canberra braces for heatwave as temperatures expected to soar above 37C for four consecutive days

21:03 EDT

Canberrans are about to swelter through the weekend, with four consecutive days at or above 37 degrees Celsius.

Southern states swelter as power supply struggles

19:13 EDT

The power supply in Victoria and South Australia is being put to the test as five of the states and territories face an extreme heatwave, with temperatures in some areas already hitting 40 degrees Celsius.