Wikipedia:WikiProject Tropical cyclones/Jargon

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This page records common tropical cyclone jargon and how to handle it. Individual articles should be self-contained and should not require external reading to understand. Jargon terms should therefore be understood within context - at least well enough to understand the overall meaning - in addition to being wikilinked to articles that provide further reading.

It's important to make sure the basic idea of each term can be understood from context: i.e., without following a wikilink and having to read another article. Some terms may be self-defining or obvious just from the text but should still get a wikilink. Others are less obvious and if they can be explained within context by adding a few words on the first usage, do so.

Acronyms are a special case of jargon. Any acronyms should be written out in full during the first usage and linked to the acronym if you intend to use the acronym later in the article. Avoid using acronyms when possible, however. Example: "The central dense overcast (CDO) was dense and centralized. Later the CDO disappeared altogether."

WP:JARGON and WP:WTF should provide useful reading for all editors of technical articles.

Specific cases[edit]

Making Tropical Cyclone articles readable since 2008
Jargon Wikilink Comment
Banding eye Dvorak technique#Pattern types That article doesn't actually explain the term; needs fixing.
banding features
Category (1-5) Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale or Tropical cyclone scales This should eiher point at Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale or Tropical cyclone scales, depending on which basin it is used in.
Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale The first usage should include the SSHS text, such as "reached Category 3 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale". Following usages can just list the category, with periodic wikilinks where appropriate.
Central dense overcast (CDO) Central dense overcast
Cold front Cold front Likely needs no explanation other than the wikilink.
Deep convection Atmospheric convection
Depression Tropical Depression Giving the strength (or relative strength) will make the use of this term obvious. Example "the storm weakened into a tropical depression".
development Tropical cyclogenesis This term is self-defining so a wikilink should be sufficient.
Extratropical Extratropical cyclone
Eye Eye (cyclone)
Eyewall replacement cycle Eye (cyclone)#Eyewall replacement cycles
Landfall Landfall (meteorology)
Low Low pressure area
Minimum central pressure Atmospheric pressure
Outflow Outflow (meteorology)
Ragged bands Tropical Cyclone#Banding
Rainband Rainband#Tropical cyclones This term should be fairly obvious without any internal explanation.
Rapid intensification rapid deepening This term is self-defining so a wikilink should be sufficient.
Ridge Ridge (meteorology)
Sea surface temperature Sea surface temperature This term is self-defining so a wikilink should be sufficient.
Significant wave height significant wave height This has a quite technical definition, but surely needs some explanation within the article to be at all understood. Something like "had a significant wave height (average height of the highest waves) of X feet" could make it understood.
Storm surge/tide Storm surge
Subtropical Subtropical cyclone Making it clear in context that it means "partly tropical" should help here. Example: "The storm began to gain tropical characteristics and became subtropical the next day."
Tropical wave Tropical wave This is heavy jargon that most people won't know. Perhaps throwing on "low pressure area" would help.
Trough Trough (meteorology)
Warm front Warm front Likely needs no explanation other than the wikilink.
Wind shear Wind shear Using some in-article text for explanation would be nice (suggestions anyone?). Avoid mixing terms mid-article like alternating use between "wind shear", "shear", and "vertical shear" as this would confuse the reader into thinking these are different things.