Given the recurring threat of severe tropical cyclones to life and property in populated coastal communities in the tropics in both present and projected climates, there is a continuing need to improve our understanding of the physics of tropical cyclone vortices. After a brief synopsis of the problem. this talk will review substantive advances made over the past decade or so on the science of tropical cyclone genesis, intensification, structure change, as well as cyclone phenomenology particular to the monsoon region of nothern Australia. Roadblocks to further progress and
open science questions will be discussed also.