What is Cloudburst and how cloudburst different from normal rainfall?
Rains are the blessings to all the living beings on the Earth because it is responsible for depositing most of the fresh water on the Earth and also provides suitable conditions for many types of ecosystems, as well as water for hydroelectric power plants and crop irrigation. The term "rainfall" is used to describe precipitation in the form of water drops of sizes larger than 0.5 mm. Other forms are snow, drizzle, glaze, sleet, hail and cloudburst. But the Global warming causes global changes in the precipitation pattern that’s why we keep hearing about clouds bursting every now and then, especially in the hills of North India. Here, we are giving a detailed explanation on cloudburst, how such cloud formed and what causes the clouds to burst and release all the water at once for general awareness.
What is Cloudburst?
It is an extreme amount of precipitation in a short period of time to a small geographical area. Meteorologists say the rain from a cloudburst is usually of the shower type with a fall rate equal to or greater than 100 mm (4.94 inches) per hour.
How does a cloudburst occur?
Cloudburst is basically a rainstorm and occurs mostly in the desert and mountainous regions, and in interior regions of continental landmasses due to the warm air current from the ground or below the clouds rushes up and carries the falling raindrops up with it. The rain fails to fall down in a steady shower, which causes excessive condensation in the clouds as new drops form and old drops are pushed back into it by the updraft.
How it different from normal rainfall?
Rain is condensed water falling from a cloud while cloudburst is a sudden heavy rainstorm. A report in the Down to Earth said a cloudburst is different from rain only in the amount of rainfall recorded. Rain over 100mm per hour is categorised as a cloudburst.
Hence, we can say the cloudburst is natural phenomena, but occur quite unexpectedly, very abruptly, and rather drenching. In the Indian Subcontinent, it is generally occurs when a monsoon cloud drifts northwards, from the Bay of Bengal or Arabian Sea across the plains then on to the Himalaya that sometimes brings 75 millimetres rain per hour.