Scientists propose underwater 'bubble net' to stop hurricanes

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Norwegian scientists have come up with a bizarre plan that would use existing technology to slow hurricanes or prevent them from forming altogether by using underwater bubbles.

Norwegian firm OceanTherm has proposed stretching a "bubble net" between two ships or moors and submerged 300 feet below the ocean's surface. The bubble net is a perforated pipe that would use compressed air to pump cold water from the depths.

Hurricanes form when surface water temperatures reach 80 degrees Fahrenheit, or 26.5 degrees Celsius. These warm waters evaporate into warm humid air that is the source of energy for hurricanes.

According to OceanTherm, cooling water from the bubble net would starve hurricanes of their energy source, stopping them from making landfall or at least preventing them from developing into stronger storms.

A bubble net could potentially be placed across a stretch of ocean that forms a natural choke point for hurricanes on their way to land, such as the Yucatan Channel between Mexico and Cuba.

RUNDOWN SHOWS:
1. Depiction of a hurricane over the Gulf of Mexico
2. Close-up of a bubble net
3. How hurricanes form
4. Bubble net pushes cold water up from deep in the ocean, cooling the warmer surface
5. Bubble net could be strung at a "choke point" for hurricanes between Cuba and Mexico

VOICEOVER (in English):
"Norwegian scientists have come up with a bizarre plan that would use existing technology to slow hurricanes or prevent them from forming altogether by using underwater bubbles."

"Norwegian firm OceanTherm has proposed stretching a 'bubble net' between two ships or moors and submerged 300 feet below the ocean's surface. The bubble net is a perforated pipe that would use compressed air to pump cold water from the depths."

"Hurricanes form when surface water temperatures reach 80 degrees Fahrenheit, or 26.5 degrees Celsius. These warm waters evaporate into warm humid air that is the source of energy for hurricanes."

"Convergent winds force the warm moist air into the atmosphere, where it releases latent heat as it condenses into clouds and rain."

"The exchange of the heat from the surface creates a pattern of wind that spirals up around the eye of the storm, and the hurricane grows, powered by the ocean's heat and evaporating water."

"According to OceanTherm, cooling water from the bubble net would starve hurricanes of their energy source, stopping them from making landfall or at least preventing them from developing into stronger storms."

"A bubble net could potentially be placed across a stretch of ocean that forms a natural choke point for hurricanes on their way to land, such as the Yucatan Channel between Mexico and Cuba."


SOURCES: OceanTherm, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, WPEC CBS 12, Phys.org
https://www.oceantherm.no/how-it-works
https://www.noaa.gov/education/resource-collections/weather-atmosphere/hurricanes
https://cbs12.com/news/local/norwegian-scientists-working-on-technology-to-stop-hurricanes-in-delray
https://phys.org/news/2018-03-hurricanes-air.html