Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Ozone levels drop when hurricanes are strengthening

08.06.2005


Scientists are continually exploring different aspects of hurricanes to increase the understanding of how they behave. Recently, NASA-funded scientists from Florida State University looked at ozone around hurricanes and found that ozone levels drop as a hurricane is intensifying.



In a recent study, Xiaolei Zou and Yonghui Wu, researchers at Florida State University found that variations of ozone levels from the surface to the upper atmosphere are closely related to the formation, intensification and movement of a hurricane.

They studied ozone levels in 12 hurricanes and looked at total ozone levels, that is, from the ground to the upper atmosphere. Now scientists have clues on how a hurricane behaves when the ozone levels are high and low.


Zou and Wu noticed that over 100 miles, the area of a hurricane typically has low levels of ozone from the surface to the top of the hurricane. Whenever a hurricane intensifies, it appears that the ozone levels throughout the storm decrease. When they looked at the storm with ozone data a hurricane’s eye becomes very clear. Because forecasters always try to pinpoint the eye of the hurricane, this knowledge will help with locating the exact position and lead to better tracking.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Hurricane Center (NHC) is the agency that issues hurricane forecasts. Out of the 12 storms analyzed, the ozone data and the NHC official report differed on the mean distance between the estimated eye by less than 18 miles during the most intense stage of the storms. As such, when Zou and Wu added the satellite observed ozone levels around a hurricane into a computer forecast model, it greatly improved the predicted track that the hurricane would take.

"This research highlights the benefits of Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS) data in hurricane track and intensity prediction, an important forecasting problem since hurricanes strike regions of high population and property growth, resulting in large natural disasters," said Zou.

The other interesting finding when analyzing ozone data around hurricanes, is that ozone levels give a clue that a storm will develop before other methods. The early spin of a tropical cyclone is weak and sometimes covered by clouds, and not easily detected by satellites that provide pictures of clouds. The ozone data gives scientists a "look beyond the clouds."

Ozone is all around the world and in the upper and lower atmosphere. Ozone in the upper atmosphere protects life on Earth from harmful ultraviolet rays from the sun, which can cause sunburn and skin cancer. Ozone close to the surface is a pollutant, which on hot, humid days with little wind creates a haze, such as that over big cities, that is harmful to breathe.

By using NASA’s satellite Earth Probe/ TOMS total ozone data, forecasters can identify ozone amounts that are closely related to the formation, intensification, and movement of a hurricane. Zou and Wu also found a strong relationship between ozone, air pressure and spin within the hurricanes.

Zou said that the connections between ozone levels and hurricane behavior are a very important step in understanding the storms.

Rob Gutro | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.gsfc.nasa.gov

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht New Study Will Help Find the Best Locations for Thermal Power Stations in Iceland
19.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

nachricht Water - as the underlying driver of the Earth’s carbon cycle
17.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Biogeochemie

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin

For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.

According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Tracking movement of immune cells identifies key first steps in inflammatory arthritis

23.01.2017 | Health and Medicine

Electrocatalysis can advance green transition

23.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New technology for mass-production of complex molded composite components

23.01.2017 | Process Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>