Hurricane Melissa By Melissa Wrzesien Science 5th September 25, 2003
What is a hurricane??? First, I want you to know that there are three categories smaller than a hurricane • Tropical disturbance/tropical wave • Tropical depression • Tropical storm A tropical storm is not as extreme as a hurricane. A hurricane is a tropical storm with winds over 74 miles per hour.
Hurricanes are different from other storms because they form in the summer to fall time period over warm water (80º or warmer, often in the tropics, Atlantic Ocean, and/or Gulf of Mexico) and when the water is warm the air is warm so the hurricane can strengthen and become even more powerful.
Five things that make hurricanes different from big storms are: • Hurricanes have no fronts • Hurricane winds weaken with height • The centers of hurricanes are warmer than their surroundings • Air sinks at the center of a hurricane • Hurricanes weaken rapidly over land
There are five different levels of hurricanes according to the Saffir-Simpson scale.
Now that you know the different levels of hurricanes, it would be helpful to know how we form. First the wind blows the clouds clockwise and we start pulling up ocean water. Then the bottom water moves counterclockwise.
Now that you know how we form it might be helpful to know what is needed for us to even form in the first place. We need: • Ocean water above 80°F (the warm part needs to be around 200 feet deep) • Warm, humid air • Winds blowing • High pressure in the upper atmosphere
Death You know about our birth and what is needed for us to live but now you must learn about our death. Yes, even hurricanes will die sometime. Before I tell of our horrible death I want to say that I love easterly winds and hate westerly ones. Easterly winds keep us going but the evil westerly winds tear us apart. I don’t understand why they like to kill things, but a hurricane can’t know everything. Westerly winds aren’t the only thing that can kill us. When we go over land we die because we don’t get the warm water that we need to survive. We live a short life, I know, but it’s a great one. Wait, you know how we are born and die but you still need to know about everything in between.
Our Life Stages Thunder storms start forming into a swirl that is considered a tropical depression. Tall storms gather toward the center-it’s now a tropical storm. Eye forms and the winds reach 74 miles per hour, making it officially a hurricane. Hurricane hits land and weakens-becomes a non-tropical storm.
I think you have learned enough about hurricanes at this point in time. I’m off because now that I’m a category 3 hurricane I can go hit land. I will take the path Hurricane Fran took because she is my hero. Hope to see some of you guys when I touch down in the Carolinas!!!
Bibliography Information from: • http://asterix.ednet.lsu.edu/~edtech/webquest/canequest.htm • http://www.usatoday.com/weather/hurricane/science.htm Pictures from: • http://www.usatoday.com/weather/tg/whurwhat/whurwhat.htm • http://www.usatoday.com/weather/hurricane/stories/2001/2001-07-19-hurricanes-amm.htm • http://www1.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/images/hurricane-fran-nasa1.gif