Drones to be used for new hurricane study - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Drones to be used for new hurricane study

VIRGINA KEY, Fla. (AP) - A new study is trying to determine why some hurricanes rapidly intensify into destructive storms, while others remain weak.

Michael Montgomery, a meteorology professor at the U.S. Naval Post Graduate School, says researchers believe that there are unseen, protected areas of developing storms that somehow defy odds and give some systems a chance to intensify.

Frank Marks, the director of NOAA's Hurricane Research Division, says the new study starting this week will use the Global Hawk, a jet-powered unmanned drone used by the military in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Researchers hope the additional drones will be able to sample areas that can't be scanned by hurricane hunter planes or weather satellites. Officials hope the additional data will lead to more accurate forecasts.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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