get their start over the warm tropical waters of the North Atlantic Ocean near the equator. Most appear in late summer or early fall, when sea temperatures are at their highest. The warm waters heats the air above it, and the updrafts of warm, moist air begin to rise. Day after day the fluffy cumuli form atop the updrafts. But the cloud tops rarely rise higher than about 6,000 feet. At that height in the tropics, there is usually a layer of warm, dry air that acts like an invisible ceiling or lid.
Once in a while, something happens in the upper air that destroys this lid. Scientist don not know how this happens. But when it does, it's the first step in the birth of a hurricane.
With the ...

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sea surface, it soaks up more and more water vapour. At the storm center, this new supply of water vapor gets pulled into the thunderhead updrafts, releasing still more energy as the water vapor condenses. This makes the updrafts rise faster, pulling in even larger amounts of air and water vapor from the storm's edges. And as the updrafts speed up, air swirls faster and faster around the storm center. The storm clouds, moving with the swirling air, form a coil.

In a few days the hurricane will have grown greatly in size and power. The swirling shape of the winds of the hurricane is shaped like a dough-nut. At the center of this giant "dough-nut" is a cloudless, hole usually having a radius of 10 miles. Through it, the blue waters of the ocean can be seen. The hurricane's wind speed near the center of the hurricane ranges from 75 miles to 150 miles per hour.

The winds of a forming hurricane tend to pull away from the center as the wind speed increases. When the winds move fast ...

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Hurricanes. (2003, December 28). Retrieved February 20, 2019, from
"Hurricanes.", 28 Dec. 2003. Web. 20 Feb. 2019. <>
"Hurricanes." December 28, 2003. Accessed February 20, 2019.
"Hurricanes." December 28, 2003. Accessed February 20, 2019.
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Added: 12/28/2003 08:40:12 AM
Category: Science & Nature
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 594
Pages: 3

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