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What is an anticyclone?

Anticyclones are areas of high pressure caused by descending air. They are stable air masses with very light, slow winds due to a gentle pressure gradient – these winds blow clockwise in direction (in the Northern Hemisphere). Anticyclones also bring a general lack of cloud cover and little precipitation. This is because the descending air is being compressed and becomes warmer, thus preventing the condensation of moisture in the air so clouds do not form. With a lack of clouds there is, naturally, a lack of precipitation.

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