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The Science Behind an Unusually Powerful March Snowstorm



Weather forecasters are trying to nail down the specifics regarding how a rapidly intensifying storm off the East Coast will affect coastal areas from New Jersey to Boston and downeast Maine on Tuesday and Wednesday. The storm, which Mashable has highlighted as a potential threat for several days now, is forecast to form early Tuesday off the Carolinas, and then race north-northeastward while intensifying at a blistering pace.

The storm is expected to undergo a meteorological process known as “bombogenesis,” which is defined as a storm with central pressure that drops by at least 24 millibars in 24 hours. In this case, the upcoming storm is projected to intensify at at least twice that rate, which is a pace rarely seen in the western Atlantic Ocean. By Wednesday, the storm should be so intense, with a minimum central air pressure below 950 millibars, that it will bring the hazards of a full-fledged winter hurricane, posing a dire risk for mariners caught in its path, as well as anyone on land close enough to the storm center. Read more…

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