I've been noticing a bit of a trend in the depiction of tidally-locked habitable planets, where they are shown having a huge hurricane-like storm over the daylight hemisphere. Here's an example, and another one in the background of this Cool Worlds video.

I'm wondering where the idea that the cloud formation over the daylight hemisphere would take the form of a single rotating storm came from. It doesn't seem particularly realistic: the Coriolis effect should tend to disrupt such a storm as it would lead to opposite rotation directions in the northern and southern hemispheres. The study by Yan & Yang (2020) "Hurricanes on Tidally Locked Terrestrial Planets: Fixed SST Experiments" predicts storms similar in scale to the hurricanes on our own planet, and the overall circulation (figure 3) appears to have separate vortices north and south of the equator rather than the single giant circulation in the artworks.

  • $\begingroup$ Isn't this an illustrator misunderstanding of the classic idea of a vast Hadley cell with cold air perpetually flowing from the nightside into the dayside and rising? $\endgroup$ – Anders Sandberg Aug 19 at 9:14

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