summer monsoon land temperatures and winds (left) compared to winter (right) 


Images by the NASA Scientific Visualization Studio for the Global Precipitation Measurement Mission

Notice how the land over the Indian subcontinent is much warmer (more red) compared to the ocean during summer versus winter. That temperature difference between land and ocean causes a reversal of the winds with a large scale sea-breeze during summer monsoon season. The warm, moist tropical air causes rain over the land, sometimes lots of it. While monsoon season brings welcome relief to the dry winter season and is necessary for agriculture, it can also lead to floods and landslides.


Educational Resources:

Why Monsoons happen (UCAR)

Where Monsoons are found (UCAR)

Monsoons impact people (UCAR)

Observing Monsoon Weather Patterns with TRMM Data


Additional Visualizations:

Monsoons: Wet, Dry, Repeat...

North American Monsoon