Monday, December 01, 2008

The supersonic hurricane neutralizer

Could stopping a hurricane before it hits landfall be this simple?
In a patent application, Leonov and colleagues say that they can put a spanner in the atmospheric works by flying supersonic jet aircraft in concentric circles around a hurricane's eye, the calm area around which the storm rotates.

The idea is that the sonic-boom shockwave would dramatically raise air pressure in the eye, disrupting the upward flow of warm air that drives the hurricane.

But how many planes would you need? Sonic booms spread out as they travel away from an aircraft, so even a small number of relatively small aircraft could do the job, say Leonov and colleagues.

"Two F-4 jet fighters flying at approximately Mach 1.5 are sufficient to suppress, mitigate and/or destroy a typical sized hurricane/typhoon," they claim in their application.
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. But hey, who knows. It's not like the technology doesn't exist today to try it out, so it'd be interesting to see if this actually works.


Mr. Bingley said...

Is it me, or does that diagram look like the Enterprise?

Eric said... that you mention it...

Anonymous said...

This makes me nervous. why do we have to mess with nature? if hurricane wanna beat the crap out of us, i say git outta the way! dont you remember the Dust Bowl? BARREN WASTELAND. and pollution? GLOBAL WARMING!