how are hurricanes formed

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**How Are Hurricanes Formed?
** Image of a hurricane approaching the coast of the United States.Left:
Image produced by Hasler, Pierce, Palaniappan & Manyin of NASA's Goddard
Laboratory for Atmospheres - Data from NOAA

Hurricanes begin as tropical storms over the warm moist waters of the
Atlantic and Pacific Oceans near the equator. (Near the Phillippines and
the China Sea, hurricanes are called typhoons.) As the moisture evaporates
it rises until enormous amounts of heated moist air are twisted high in the
atmosphere. The winds begin to circle counterclockwise north of the equator
or clockwise south of the equator. The reatively peaceful center of the
hurricane is called the eye. Around this center winds move at speeds
between 74 and 200 miles per hour. As long as the hurricane remains over
waters of 79F or warmer, it continues to pull moisture from the surface and
grow in size and force. When a hurricane crosses land or cooler waters, it
loses its source of power, and its wind gradually slow until they are no
longer of hurricane force--less than 74 miles per hour.

Hurricanes over the Atlantic often begin near Africa, drift west on the
Trade Winds, and veer north as they meet the prevalling winds coming
eastward across North America. Hurricanes over the Eastern Pacific begin in


how is a hurricane formed

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