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Electric skies continue within Northwest Cloudband

Craig McIntosh, Wednesday December 20, 2017 - 14:13 EDT

Widespread thunderstorms have been sparking up, and will continue to, within a long line of cloud stretching from northern WA to the southeast, otherwise known as the Northwest Cloudband.

If you check out the current satellite view over Australia, you'll see a distinct cloud formation diagonally crossing the country from the northwest to the southeast. As air generally moves from hot to cold, moisture in the air moves with it. The cloudband forms when the very warm and moist tropical air over the northeastern Indian Ocean moves over land and heads south-east, rising high into the atmosphere above the cooler air to the south.

As the air rises, pressure lowers, the cloudband forms within a trough and finally thunderstorms are triggered along its path. Over the last couple of days, severe thunderstorms have been generated over many areas between the Northern Territory and Victoria. Luckily for Victoria, the cloudband has shifted north so there will not be a repeat of Tuesday's severe thunderstorms. However, this means the focus of thunderstorms shifts to parts of New South Wales and Queensland.

Thunderstorms, many likely to be severe, will spark up over northern WA, the NT, QLD and NSW over the coming days. The trough producing the Northwest Cloudband will weaken temporarily over the coming weekend, however it will rebuild soon after with the help of a very active atmosphere over the northeastern Indian Ocean.

- Weatherzone

© Weatherzone 2017

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