Thunderstorms and Lightning
Meteorology and Weather

How do thunderstorms develop?


Wiki User

First there needs to be some atmospheric instability, so a layer of warmer air above a layer of colder air. Then there needs to be humidity to fuel the rapid cloud formation. Also there needs to be vertical wind shear, meaning air moving in different directions and speeds at different heights, this contributes to the intensity of the storm. Finally you need a trigger to start convection, this can be air lifting of some type whether it be surface heating (not as likely) or frontal or orographic lifting (more likely).