The Decade’s Strongest Hurricane
September 23, 2009

 Thursday_Answer

This collection of images featuring the strongest hurricane, cyclone, or typhoon from any ocean during each year of the past decade includes storms both famous—or infamous—and obscure.

Of the decade’s most powerful storms, two were in the Atlantic/Caribbean basin, five were in the Pacific north of the equator, and three were in the South Pacific.  This is a satellite image of Damrey:

Damrey_Hurricane

Storm Date of image Maximum Wind Speed km/h (mph) Minimum Pressure millibars Basin
Damrey May 9, 2000 290 (180) 878 Western Pacific
Faxai December 22, 2001 290 (180) 915 Western Pacific
Zoe December 28, 2002 285 (177) 890 South Pacific
Maemi September 10, 2003 280 (174) 910 Western Pacific
Chaba August 23, 2004 290 (180) 879 Western Pacific
Wilma October 18, 2005 295 (183) 882 Atlantic/Caribbean
Monica April 24, 2006 285 (177) 905 South Pacific
Dean August 18, 2007 280 (174) 907 Atlantic/Caribbean
Jangmi September 27, 2008 260 (162) 905 Western Pacific
Hamish March 8, 2009 240 (149) 925 South Pacific

Damrey_track

Never heard of Damrey?  There is a reason, it didn’t make land, it harmlessly wandered in the Pacific Ocean. 

To view other weather quiz answers click here:

Past Weather Quiz Answers

Everything Hurricanes
August 17, 2009

With the tropics now in full swing we have your one stop shop to follow all the named storms. 

Ana

This is an image from our justweather.com site.  It is an excellent source of information for everything tropical.  Check it out by clicking image or go here:

Just Weather Hurricane Page

Ask Anthony
July 6, 2009

From Jessie:

will houston get a big hurricane or any at all????

Ask_Anthony

That’s the big question. No one knows the future, but we all have to be prepared. As the image shows, on average southeast Texas gets hit with a hurricane once every 12 years.  The key is to always be prepared.  There is no harm in preparing for the worst and hoping we don’t get hit.  We went through Ike last year, so we know the supplies we need and how to survive a week or longer without power.

The Weather Research Center, located in Houston, is stating that Louisiana and Mississippi are at an elevated risk of getting hit this year.

Joe Bastardi, an Accuweather forecaster, is saying Galveston needs to be on guard with the potential of a storm forming close to shore this hurricane season. 

This image does not include Ike, but does give the forecast tracks going back to 1871.  (Click to enlarge)

Ask Anthony
June 27, 2009

If the beach water is at 92 degrees, would this make for a very severe storm should one develop…

R. Horine

Good question.  Water temperature is only one part of hurricane development.  Think of a tropical system like a race car.  The water temperature is the engine, the warmer it is the stronger a storm can get.  But you also need gas.  Gas would be the mid and upper layers of the atmosphere.  For a powerful storm you need the winds to go in one direction from the surface to 5,000 feet.  If there are shearing winds (winds that go in the opposite direction) it will typically weaken a storm.  Of course we need a good set of wheels…  I think you understand the analogy.  A storm needs a high relative humidity to gain strength; it also needs cooler temperatures in the upper levels of the atmosphere.  If the conditions are perfect a powerful hurricane will form.  Water temperature is only one part of the equation.
Anthony Yanez