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Our Featured Article:

What Are Hurricanes?  

by Burt Cotton

Katrina, Vince, Rita are the subject of lead stories in all the journals around the world. They have created a stir in the North Atlantic Ocean.

Can you guess who they are...?

No, they are not some super successful people or any genre of Hollywood stars. They are the names of hurricanes. Sounds familiar? Do you know what is a hurricane?

Hurricane is a tropical cyclone with a speed of around 74 miles per hour characterized with heavy rains and winds. This is the result of low pressure system that is usually created around tropical areas. They are a part of the natural circulation system that moves heat from the tropical regions to the places of higher altitudes.

Hurricanes are known by several names in different continents of the world. In the North Atlantic and South Atlantic region Hurricane is the official term used for tropical cyclone. The other parts of world in Northwest Pacific Ocean name hurricane as Typhoon. The hurricanes are called severe cyclonic storm in the north Indian Ocean.

All these nomenclatures refer to the similar phenomenon of low pressure in tropical areas. The only difference between a hurricane and cyclone is that cyclone is any low pressure atmospheric activity in the southern hemisphere. Where, hurricane is an atmospheric activity with in the northern hemisphere of the globe.

Hurricanes are also called the reverse heat engines. Reason being, they happen due to the condensation of water around the tropical regions. The condensation or rising water vapors in air cause a series of reaction to trigger on the hurricane. As the air heats up around the warm ocean, the water becomes even warmer. As a result the air moves towards the ground with heavy thunders carrying the ocean water with it.

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