Where Hurricanes Hit

Where Hurricanes Hit
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The Enormous Structure of a Hurricane
How do hurricanes get so big? Start off the coast of West Africa to see how this region is the perfect breeding ground for low-pressure disturbances. Chart the role of the Coriolis force, water temperature, and other factors that must coincide for these systems to grow into hurricanes threatening the…
Storm Surge and Hurricane Intensification
Hurricanes destroy life and property in four ways: through storm surge, inland flooding, high winds, and embedded tornadoes. Consider examples of each. Then focus on high water as the deadliest factor, responsible for 80% of all hurricane fatalities.
The Science of Extreme Weather
Thanks to an ongoing revolution in the science of meteorology, we can now understand how extreme weather conditions arise, produce far more accurate forecasts, and know how to protect ourselves when dangerous conditions develop. The Science of Extreme Weather is your field guide to the worst that Earth's atmosphere can…
Extreme Weather Is Everywhere
Survey the remarkable range of extreme weather around the planet. Then consider: Why does Earth have weather at all? Professor Snodgrass introduces basic features of the atmosphere that naturally lead to severe weather. He concludes by outlining the goals of the course--among them, preparedness.
Temperature Extremes and Cold-Air Outbreaks
Discover the origin of Earth's great variability in air temperature, and learn how it also explains the seasons. Search for the highest and lowest temperatures on the planet, and the locations with the greatest difference between highs and lows. Along the way, encounter the deadliest weather on Earth.
Low Pressure and Earth’s High Winds
Witness a demonstration of the power of air pressure and the ability of changing pressure to produce clouds. Learn how fluctuations in air pressure play a role in all weather, propelling everything from the ferocious winds of a tornado to the incredible speeds of the jet stream.
Extreme Humidity, Rain, and Fog
Severe weather is driven by water's ability to change phase--with energy being released during the transition from vapor to liquid, and from liquid to ice. Calculate the stupendous amount of energy brewing in a typical thunderstorm, and study cases of extreme humidity, rain, and fog.
How Radar Reveals Storms
In this and the next lecture, study the advanced technology that has revolutionized extreme weather forecasting. Here, look at how radar has vastly improved the prediction of tornadic thunderstorms. You've seen Doppler radar images in forecasts. Now learn how this all-important tracking tool works.
How Satellites Track Severe Weather
Venture into space to see how different types of weather satellites chart large-scale extreme weather systems in both daylight and darkness. Compare two nearly identical hurricanes--one in 1900, the other in 2008--to highlight the life-saving capability of orbiting weather stations.
Anatomy of a Lightning Strike
Moment for moment, the one billion volts discharged in a typical lightning strike may be the most extreme of all weather phenomena. Watch lightning unfold in super-slow motion, and gain an appreciation for the exquisite complexity of this electrifying event.
Lightning Extremes and Survival
Investigate positive polarity lighting--a bolt up to ten times more powerful than normal lightning--which accounts for five percent of cloud-to-ground strikes. Then hear life-saving tips on how to recognize when you are about to be hit by lightning and what you should instantly do.
Thunderstorm Formation and Weather Balloons
Begin a series of lectures on thunderstorms, which are the key to understanding many types of extreme weather. Learn how thunderstorms are forecast, and explore their formation by following a weather balloon on its data-gathering mission through the atmosphere.