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Published on Apr 5, 2012
The Atmosphere, the Ocean and Environmental Change (GG 140)
Mid-latitude frontal cyclones gain energy from temperature gradients rather than latent heat release as is the case with convective storms. They form in the belt of westerly winds and therefore generally move west to east in both the northern and southern hemispheres. A mid-latitude frontal cyclone develops from a kink in the polar front, and eventually warm and cold fronts develop around a low pressure center to form the storm. An example of this type of storm is a nor'easter, which commonly occurs in New England and is named for the northeasterly winds that precede the storm's arrival. Weather forecasting is also discussed.