In the extratropical latitudes, cyclones host a complex environment where warm and moist air interacts with relatively cold and dry air. Using Eulerian and Lagrangian tools, we study the dynamical environment that leads to cyclogenesis, the cyclone life cycle and the nature of the flow interaction within the cyclone that controls the impact on the surface weather.
Special attention is dedicated to Mediterranean cyclones. They are affected strongly by the complex topography of the Mediterranean basin, and are the primary contributor to severe weather in this highly populated region. We study the dynamical characteristics of intense Mediterranean cyclones, and their associated large-scale circulation upstream, which are essential for improved predictability of high-impact events.
We currently study how dry air intrusions (DIs) in the cold sector of cyclones affect frontal structure and the distribution of moisture in the cyclone environment, leading finally to heavy precipitation.