In the Bay of Bengal (BoB) area, landfalling Tropical Cyclones (TCs) often produce heavy rainfall that results in coastal flooding and causes enormous loss of life and property. However, the rainfall contribution of TCs in this area has not yet been systematically investigated. To fulfil this objective, firstly, this paper used TC best track data from the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) to analyze TC activity in this area from 1998 to 2016 (January-December). It showed that on average there were 2.47 TCs per year generated in BoB. In 1998, 1999, 2000, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013, and 2016 there were 3 or more TCs; while in 2001, 2004, 2011, 2012, and 2015, there was only 1 TC. On a monthly basis, the maximum TC activity was in May, October, and November, and the lowest TC activity was from January to April and in July. Rainfall data from the Tropical Rainfall Measurement Mission (TRMM) were used to estimate TC rainfall contribution (i.e., how much TC contributed to the total rainfall) on an interannual and monthly scale. The result showed that TCs accounted for around 8% of total overland rainfall during 1998-2016, and with a minimum of 1% in 2011 and a maximum of 34% in 1999. On the monthly basis, TCs' limited rainfall contribution overland was found from January to April and in July (less than 14%), whereas the maximum TC rainfall contribution overland was in November and December (16%), May (15%), and October (14%). The probability density functions showed that, in a stronger TC, heavier rainfall accounted for more percentages. However, there was little correlation between TC rainfall contribution and TC intensity, because the TC rainfall contribution was also influenced by the TC rainfall area and frequency, and as well the occurrence of other rainfall systems.
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- Bay of Bengal
- rainfall contribution
- tropical cyclone