Microwaves and Hurricanes

Russian scientists developed a technique, which allows studying the way hurricanes move and finding out the amount of heat and moisture they carry to mid-latitudes and mid-high latitudes from tropics. The technique is based upon data of Earth’s satellite monitoring in the microwave range.

New technique was tested on the Alberto hurricane, which had hit Atlantic regions in summer 2000. New method is universal – it suits any hurricane, strong and long enough. Huge advantage of new development is the ability to estimate potential energy of a hurricane, i.e., the amount of water vapour, absorbed by the tropical cyclone. Satellite spectrometers are unable to detect water vapour, since they observe environment in visual and ultra-violet light ranges, that is why said frequency channels are informative only for quite thin (10-100 meters) upper layer of cloud systems. Radio frequencies can raise the cloudy curtain over the processes, taking place where ordinary spectrometers turn blind.

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