Shearing A Little Off The Top:
Wind shear is a term that gets thrown around quiet a lot when we talk about the tropics and hurricanes (as well as severe weather). It’s a pretty simple principal to understand and because it’s used so frequently, I wanted to at least shed some light on this invisible weather influencer. I’ll bullet point a couple things here, otherwise, be sure to click the video for even more delicious shear knowledge.
*In hurricanes, wind shear acts as a wrench in the tropical machine by mixing out warm, moist air from the center of the hurricane “engine”.
*In thunderstorms, wind shear tilts the updraft and allows a storm to continue to strengthen past the threshold we would expect for an environment without any shear.
*There are two forms of shear; speed and directional. We can increase the speed through the atmosphere, but the wind can also change direction as well.
*The “fasten seat belt” light can be illuminated even when flying through clear skies. Wind shear is responsible for strong turbulence even when flying in a cloud free environment.
*The strongest hurricanes can overcome shear values as high as 50 mph.
*To overcome wind shear in the sailboat, some suggest using a boom vang.
*Because you can never be surprised by what you can find on the internet. No Shears? No Problem: Self-Shedding Sheep Silence the Shears