Such a force is required if Newton's laws are to be applied in this system. In meteorology the Coriolis force per unit mass arises solely from the earth's rotation, and is equal to -2Ω
, where Ω
is the angular velocity of the earth
is the (relative) velocity
of the particle. Thus the Coriolis force acts as a deflecting force, normal to the velocity, to the right of the motion in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere. It cannot alter the speed of the particle. The three components toward east, north, and zenith
are, respectively, 2Ω (v
sinφ - w
sinφ, and 2Ωu
cosφ, where u
are the component velocities and φ the latitude. Since the Coriolis force is in effect proportional to the speed, its importance in any given atmospheric motion may be judged from the representative speed and duration of the motion. See inertial force
Gill, A. E. 1982. Atmosphere–Ocean Dynamics. Academic Press, . 72–74.
Holton, J. R. 1992. An Introduction to Dynamic Meteorology. 3d edition, Academic Press, . 31–38.
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