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Q: Hurricane Development ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: Hurricane Development
Category: Science > Earth Sciences
Asked by: bevans1234-ga
List Price: $100.00
Posted: 24 Mar 2006 13:44 PST
Expires: 23 Apr 2006 14:44 PDT
Question ID: 711582
I need information and web sites on how Hurricanes form. I really need
details like how the pools of air form in the atmosphere, to the trade
winds, to the water temps around Africa and the Cape Verde Islands
where the big ones form. I need to know what everything is like in
great detail from their birth to their end. I need to know things
like, what the fish are doing during a hurricane, plankton,
vegetation, coral, what the sky looks like inside and out of a
hurricane at its different stages. I need to know the finer and more
interesing details of the storm from its infancy to its destruction at
landfall. What's it like at night during a hurricane? What about a
submarine underneath, all the neat and detailed interesting stuff
about a hurricane that you do not hear or see on TV or radio due to
their time contstraints. I am in the middle of writing a novel about
such and all finer details for research purposes would be a

Bill Evans

Request for Question Clarification by umiat-ga on 24 Mar 2006 14:47 PST
Hello, Bill!

 You have asked an extremely interesting question that I would love to
research. But, I must admit, it sounds a bit daunting for a researcher
when a question contains words like "I need to know what everything is
like in great detail from their birth to their end."
 I have compiled a few sample references for your review, and I can
certainly find more interesting facts and anecdotes. However, I would
not want to perform several hours of work, only to find that you
expect far more research than the pricing and time constraints of
Google Answers allows.
 Please let me know if the following examples are they types of
references you are seeking. You can clarify your answer even if the
question is "locked" so I will await your reply.


Sample references:

Hurricane Formation (click on each page)

"Eventually these disturbances will move off of the western coast of
Africa near the Cape Verde Islands (especially during the months of
August and September) and intensify into a tropical cyclone. The most
intense and long-lived hurricanes observed in the Atlantic Basin form
in this region and are known as Cape Verde Hurricanes...

Do Hurricanes Affect Fish?


above the eye of Hurrican Ivan  

sunset over the eyewall, taken from the NOAA-43 hurricane hunter

Sample articles;

"History Reveals Hurricane Threat to New York City," By Robert Roy Britt
LiveScience Senior Writer. posted: 01 June 2005

"Tropical Storms - Creepy Nighttime Hurricanes." Linda Paige

Human Interest Stories - Arthur D. Raynor - Hurricane Account
Subject: Re: Hurricane Development
Answered By: umiat-ga on 25 Mar 2006 22:11 PST
Rated:4 out of 5 stars
Hello, bevans1234-ga! 

 I have compiled a wide variety of online sources concerning
hurricanes so that you can form a detailed understanding of their
formation and effects.


"Hurricanes." BBC Weather.


A quick set of facts:

See "Definition Of A Hurricane."


The Online Meteorology Guide contains the most comprehensive overview
of the stages of a hurricane that I have found online:

Stages of Development - from tropical depression to hurricane

Tropical Depression

Tropical Storms


The Eye - the center of the storm

The Eye Wall - a hurricane's most devastating region

Spiral Bands - where more rain is found

Pressure and Winds - the distribution across a hurricane

Movement of Hurricanes - steered by the global winds

Damage caused by hurricanes

Strong Winds determines the intensity of a hurricane

Storm Surge - a concern to coastal residents

Heavy rain and Flooding - a problem of any tropical disturbance

Tornadoes - even in hurricanes

Rip Tides - a danger to swimmers

Hurricanes - How They Are Named differently in different parts of the world

Interaction with El Niño - how hurricane frequency may be affected


"Formation of a Hurricane."


"How Hurricanes Work," by Marshall Brain and Craig C. Freudenrich, Ph.D. 

 ** Make sure you click on each page


"How Hurricanes Form."


"Answers archive: Hurricane science and forecasting." USA Today. 2005

Click for high-resolution images in the following article:



A basic overview from Wikipedia - "Cape Verde-type hurricane."


"Cape Verde Islands--This is probably the most common area for the
development of many of the classic and powerful hurricanes. This
region usually doesn't become favorable for development until August
when water temperatures become warm enough to support tropical


"Hurricanes can form anywhere between Africa and the coast of Texas,
or off the southeast U.S. coast, but during the peak of the season,
late August through September, the most powerful storms all start as
tropical "waves" (clusters of thunderstorms) coming off the African
coast near the Cape Verde Islands. These storms, called Cape Verde
hurricanes, can persist for three weeks or more as they cross the
ocean to threaten the U.S. or the nations of the Caribbean. All of
North Carolina's greatest hurricanes--Hazel, Donna, Fran--have been
Cape Verde "blows."


Mesoscale Convective Complexes (MCC's)

"The tropics also experience MCC's similar to those described in our
lecture re thunderstorms. These typically develop in the monsoon
trough (aka the ITCZ) and will migrate westward and can last up to a
week. MCC's are numerous in the African savannas during their wet
season and some may move into the African Sahel a tropical steppe
region that is subject to drought and flood. Eventually these
disturbances will move off of the western coast of Africa near the
Cape Verde Islands (especially during the months of August and
September) and intensify into a tropical cyclone."

"The most intense and long-lived hurricanes observed in the Atlantic
Basin form in this region and are known as Cape Verde Hurricanes.
Hurricanes Hugo (Sept 8-22, 1989), Andrew (Aug 16-28, 1992), Luis (Aug
26-Sept 10, 1995) and Floyd (Sept 7-17, 1999) are examples of Cape
Verde Hurricanes. All of these storms had winds of at least 140 mph at
their peak intensity. MCC's can also originate in the Amazon basin
during the latter portion of the tropical cyclone season and migrate
into the Caribbean. Hurricane Mitch (Oct-21-Nov 3, 1998) a 180mph
monster and the deadliest (over 11,000 killed) hurricane to strike
North America in the 20th Century, developed from a disturbance that
can be traced back to the Amazon basin."


From "Hurricane Formation." 


"Now that we have a nice warm ocean, all we really need is something
to come along and take advantage of the situation. Often times, Africa
is the source of the "spark" that gets the fire going. Every few days,
a tropical wave migrates westward off the coast of Africa- near the
Cape Verde Islands. Nearly 100 of these concentrated areas of lower
pressure traverse the Atlantic each hurricane season. Only a small
portion of them, perhaps 10 a year, ever become anything more than a
large thunderstorm complex over the water. But the ones that do
develop keep forecasters and folks living west of 60 degrees longitude
very nervous. The reason is that some of the Western Hemisphere's
worst hurricanes can be traced back to a tropical wave that originated
over Africa. This is not to say that every tropical wave that develops
will become a historic hurricane, but these so called "Cape Verde"
storms always need to be watched."


The following reference offers some more technical information:

"Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology." Tropical Meteorology Notes by
Professor Paul Sirvatka. College of DuPage.


Above the eye of Hurricane Ivan  

Sunset over the eyewall, taken from the NOAA-43 hurricane hunter

See Google Images of hurricanes,GGLD:2003-47,GGLD:en&sa=N&tab=wi


Do Hurricanes Affect Fish?


Hurricanes and Whales


Dolphins and Hurricanes


From "Scientists: Sharks Avoided Hurricanes; Animals Fled Tsunamis."
December 30, 2004.


"Just before Tropical Storm Gabrielle hit southwestern Florida, all 14
tagged blacktip sharks in Terra Ceia Bay bolted from their natural
nursery and swam to deeper waters. "I'm guessing that this is
something that is hard-wired," Heupal said.....Heupel's theory for the
pre-storm evacuations is that sharks can somehow sense the decrease in
atmospheric pressure that comes as a hurricane approaches. As air
pressure decreases, water pressure also drops...."


Also read "Feeling pressured," by Stephan Reebs. Natural History,  April, 2004


"Using animals to predict natural disasters like hurricanes,
earthquakes, and tsunamis -Biologists find some animals get early
warnings on natural disasters," by David Fleshler
January 13 2005.


"What Happens to Animals during Hurricanes?" by Marti Welch


"Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: Fishing and Aquaculture Industries -
Damage and Recovery." CRS Report for Congress. Updated October 13,


See "Hurricane Georges,  Marathon, Fla.  Sept. 1998: We Know what
happens above water! But......"


"The Effects of Hurricane Gilbert on Coral Reefs at Discovery Bay," by
Jeremy D. Woodle. Caribbean Environment Programme Technical Report #4


"The Atlantic Hurricane and its Effects on Caribbean Coastal Systems."
submitted by Robert Magorien.


ROLE IN LONG-TERM DECLINE." Ecology: Vol. 86, No. 1, pp. 174-184.


"Reef Brief - How Hurricanes Impact The Reef - by Ann Hayden."


"Catastrophic impact of hurricanes on atoll outer reef slopes in the
Tuamotu (French Polynesia)." Marie José Langlade , IRD


"Hurricanes Shape New Natural Order," By Cain Burdeau. Associated
Press. 29 January 2006

"Hurricanes have been kneading the Gulf Coast like putty for eons,
carving out inlets and bays, creating beaches and altering plant and
animal life - but up to now, the natural world has largely been able
to rebound. Trees, marine life and shoreline features tourists and
anglers enjoyed in recent years were largely the same types as those
17th century buccaneers and explorers encountered. But scientists say
the future could be different. Nature might not be able to rebound so
quickly. The reason: the human factor....."


Answers archive: Flying into hurricanes." USA Today.

"Answers archive: Hurricane history and climatology."

"History Reveals Hurricane Threat to New York City," By Robert Roy Britt
LiveScience Senior Writer. posted: 01 June 2005

"Tropical Storms - Creepy Nighttime Hurricanes." Linda Paige

Human Interest Stories - Arthur D. Raynor - Hurricane Account


I was unable to find any detailed accounts of the effects of
hurricanes on submarines at great depths. The following references
might be somewhat interesting, however:

From "USS Narwhal (SSN 671)."

"USS NARWHAL sustains minor damage during Hurricane Hugo while
submerged at the Charleston Naval Base. The submarine was moored with
nine double wires and two three-inch ship's lines, all but one of
which were ripped loose during the first half of the storm. During the
eye of the storm, the captain discovered the submarine had drifted to
the center of the Cooper River. Tugboats and the NARWHAL crew
unsuccessfully tried to move the submarine back to the pier. As the
storm began again, the captain submerged the submarine in the river
and the NARWHAL rode out the remainder of the hurricane with only part
of its conning tower exposed."


From "The Ben Franklin Sails Again," By Christopher Pollon

"There was only one tense moment during the mission. A hurricane was
projected to appear at the very location of Ben Franklin?s ascent; at
the same time, carbon monoxide levels were building towards the end of
the drift. Do they surface to get air in the eye of a hurricane, or
stay safely submerged and breathe potentially unsafe levels of CO?
After heated exchanges between Ben Franklin and mission control, they
decided to stay down. Soon after the decision was made, the hurricane
took off in another direction, and the CO levels were confirmed to be


See photos along with the following account - "The Albacore Story."

"The round shape of Albacore's hull made for uncomfortable riding on
the surface in any kind of a sea. The natural tendency was for the
boat to submerge when running into any kind of a sea. A vivid example
was Albacore's encounter with a hurricane when returning to Portsmouth
from Florida after a trial period off Ft. Lauderdale. Yeoman Butch
Jordan: "I can remember we ran into a hurricane on our way home from
Florida. Heavy waves were pounding us and coming over the top of the
sail. We had to secure the bridge watch and send the OOD and lookout
down to the Control Room. Water was coming into the boat through the
main air induction and filling the machinery space bilges. We had to
keep the main induction open to run the engines because our battery
was pretty flat. Fortunately, we ran out of the storm before we
flooded the bilges or ran out of battery. The control room watch
observed the digital depth gauge cycling between 9 and 60 feet - while
running on the surface!"


 I hope these references help to provide the details you need for your
story. Let me know if you need anything further and I will try to help
if I can.



Search Strategy

Hurricane formation
cycles of a hurricane
effects of a hurricane underwater
hurricanes AND animals
hurricanes AND marine life
hurricanes AND coral reefs
hurricane AND submarine
personal accounts of hurricanes
cape verde hurricanes
water temperature AND cape verde hurricanes
submarine crew during a hurricane
hurricane photos OR images

Clarification of Answer by umiat-ga on 27 Mar 2006 17:33 PST
Hello, bevans1234!

 Thank you for your kind comments and extreme generosity!
Unfortunately, once a question is closed, there is no way to pay for
extra information.
 If you would like to ask a new question, you may address it "To
Umiat" in the subject heading and I will be more than happy to work
further on this topic. If you would like "specific" information
related to hurricanes, be sure to specify this in your question since
this is a very broad topic. I can continue researching from the broad
aspect to the narrow. So - think this over, and I will watch for
another question if you feel ready to ask!

Sincerely - umiat
bevans1234-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $20.00
Umiat, great job. This is the type of information I am looking for. If
there is more you can add, I certainly pay you for your time. Thanks.
Let me know. I await a reply.

Subject: Re: Hurricane Development
From: pinkfreud-ga on 24 Mar 2006 14:10 PST
This isn't an answer to your question, but it might be helpful. If you
are writing fiction that involves the evolution and progress of a
storm, be sure to read the novel "Storm," by George R. Stewart. It's a
classic, and deservedly so.

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