It appears that the "experts" all make a major error in an assumption regarding the beginning of a hurricane (or waterspout, and to some extent, a tornado). They all seem to insist that there must be initial velocity in the wind, and many also insist that there must be rotation in that velocity. A video below shows that is not necessary, although it can certainly enhance the effect. The video shows a dead calm air environment, where hundreds of spinning vortices form. My research indicates that, instead of requiring high velocity air or rotations in that moving air, this genesis occurs entirely because the presence of the water and that the water temperature is significantly warmer than the air temperature. Water needs to evaporate and then immediately condense into fog droplets to release immense amounts of kinetic energy. The Physics of it are fairly simple, and easy to calculate, to be able to predict the characteristics of the resulting spinning. Math examples are provided below.
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No air movement is required for this process. In fact, in my Research, I find that they seem to only form when the air is dead calm!
The calculations are easily done, and they nicely confirm the rate of circulation seen in the video. Note that these many circulations began in dead calm air and with no initial rotary motion or incentive at all! The thousands of spontaneous vortices that I have witnessed seem to have all rotated counter-clockwise, which I attribute to the Coriolis Force due to the rotation of the Earth. I do not yet know whether any clockwise circulations ever form or what happens to them if they do.
Once a circulation has begun, then the reasoning that is commonly described can have effect, although the supplying of kinetic energy as described here must still remain a primary factor.
The significant factors here are that the musical note is provided from an external, distant location, it is of extremely constant frequency, and that it has nowhere near enough acoustic power to actually shatter the structure of a glass.
That parlor trick only works with a wineglass if the glass is "fine enough" to have well-defined internal resonant frequencies, where an external "forcing" vibration that happens to be at exactly the right frequency can cause an effect often referred to as a magnification factor. Very small vibrations first form in the wineglass, and as long as the external forcing vibrations continue at exactly the same frequency for a while, the internal vibrations inside the wineglass then keep magnifying or amplifying, in causing an ultimate consequence far in excess of the causative force being provided.
It has long been my belief that the circulations of hurricanes contain pure enough resonant frequencies to take advantage of this sort of approach. One resonant frequency is obviously the rotation rate of the entire hurricane, but there appear to be smaller (and therefore faster) resonant structures inside each hurricane.
It has long been known that once a hurricane goes over land, its strength rapidly degrades and also that a lot of tornadoes are reported. No one seems to have ever connected these two facts, but I believe they are intimately related. Each tornado that spawns off of a hurricane immediately carries away a good deal of the rotational energy of the hurricane (as kinetic energy of rotation of the spawned tornadoes), which then rapidly locally dissipates as the tornadoes disperse. No one has ever been able to accurately measure the power in a tornado, and they also occur in many different strengths, but rough calculations suggest that a tornado may contain on the order of 500 million horsepower. Below, we will discuss estimates that the same sort of calculations for a hurricane suggest that its power is likely to be on the order of 10 billion horsepower. If these numbers are reasonably accurate, then if a hurricane over land spawns off just ten tornadoes (which seems common), that might account for around half of the overall power in the circulation of the hurricane. It is not known why tornadoes seem to get spawned from hurricanes when over land, but it usually seems to occur very quickly, within the first hour or two over land, and the power of the hurricane is generally seen to rapidly degrade.
Hurricanes over land are generally observed to dissipate power remarkably rapidly, and simple friction with the ground cannot explain the massive reduction in kinetic energy, while the spawning of multiple tornadoes seems to provide such an explanation. It seems relatively obvious to me that this specific process is a primary one in why hurricanes can lose so much of their strength so very quickly after moving over land. Otherwise, the hurricane should have retained much of its massive kinetic energy for a far longer period of time. After all, it took several days for it to grow to the immense size and power it had! Any analysis of the frictional losses with the land surface show that the energy degradation should be far slower than actually occurs. I believe this spawning of multiple tornadoes is critically important in the ending of a hurricane.
I see it as a valuable study to do an energy accounting analysis to determine the real-time energy content of a hurricane as it moves over land, and also the energy content of the multiple tornadoes that appear at the fringes of the dissipating hurricane. I believe it will be found that this explains the Integral diminution of a hurricane over land.
I tried to get this done regarding Hurricane Lili, but government experts had absolutely no interest in doing it!
I believe that this relationship is a potential key to dealing with hurricanes. Those spawned tornadoes can only begin as a result of some resonant feature of the hurricane. It would then only be necessary to determine what triggers that multiple tornado formation. I believe that it may be possible to artificially induce tornadoes to spawn off of a hurricane, earlier in the existence of a hurricane. If this could be done while a hurricane is still far at sea, it may be possible to degrade a hurricane's strength, or perhaps even entirely disrupt its circulation, causing it to simply fade out of existence, and simply become a tropical depression, far at sea and away from causing damage to people or property.
A 2006 short movie I made of an early morning Creek in dead calm
air where thousands of hurricane-like or tornado-like structures form
and persist for many seconds! In this video, I tried to follow one vortex for
around 34 seconds. In the fixed frame, from about the middle of the
video segment, it is just to the right of center, but
in the video, it starts out near the left edge. They are much more
obvious to the eye than in these videos. You should probably
enlarge the video to full screen to best see it.|
The videotape on the right is of one of the objects recorded for 34 seconds in April 2006. You may want to enlarge the video to full screen to best see it, where it is first clearly seen beginning toward the left of the screen. All the "experts" have always insisted that strong and circulating winds, fast moving water and very hot water are required out in the ocean to allow hurricanes to form. They assume those things to provide the energy which is certainly needed. But these many thousands of vortices which I get to watch on many Spring mornings, describe an entirely different story! The air is always dead calm when I can see them (which often happens right after sunrise). The water is always flowing very smoothly and fairly slowly so there is no spectacular source of kinetic energy there. The water is warmer than the air, generally by around 10°F or 12°F different, and the humidity is fairly high.
It is fascinating, and I believe it provides an area of research into the starting of hurricanes, waterspouts and tornadoes that no one else yet seems to have considered. As to hurricanes, warm water is definitely realized as somehow being important, but no one seems to have found out why the warmth is important! Also, there are always assumptions that moderately strong winds are involved which somehow turn to become circular motion. These objects above my Creek seem to indicate a totally different explanation, since they only seem to develop when there is dead calm winds!
I believe that in April 2006, I came upon a complete description of how and why the vortices form, including an energy accounting and other mathematics to confirm that it all complies with both the Conservation of Energy and Conservation of Angular Momentum. I believe that the same process or an extremely similar one occurs in certain parts of the oceans to initiate hurricane formation. This research has resulted in me concluding that tornadoes cannot form over dry ground, but damp ground is fine. My reasoning also makes clear why hurricanes would not normally form in other parts of the oceans, including areas that other experts believe should be sources of hurricanes. I think this logic applies to the formation of tornadoes, waterspouts, and hurricanes. When I did the math and found that the amounts of energy and power involved appeared to all be very consistent, I felt that I had found the correct explanation for the phenomenon of hurricane formation.
The conditions seen in my research seem to be these:
I am definitely not a professional cameraman, and the movies I have made of these objects do not really show how starkly obvious they are to the eyes!
There are several observations I have made regarding watching many
thousands of these objects, in addition to the conditional issues
The images seem to blink on and off, but that is mostly due to the many trees on the opposite side of the Creek blocking the sunlight's backlighting of the vortices. I also suspect that if I used some sort of camera filter, the impressive visual appearance might be far better seen in videos.
There seems little doubt to me that this environment can easily be duplicated in a laboratory setting. Dead calm air, fairly humid. A flow of somewhat warmed water of around 2 to 4 ft/sec, where the water is very smooth and not disturbed, in a room where the air is at least 10°F or 12°F cooler than the water temperature (and suitable humidity levels) should duplicate the situation. A spotlight or floodlight could backlight the objects to be able to watch them reliably. Possibly some camera filters may be appropriate.
In the Spring of 2006, I made several artificial tornadoes inside the basement of my house, maybe a total of about twenty over a month or so.
The conditions present when this videotape was made were:
Date: April 9, 2006
Time: 7:20am to 8:00am local (CDT) time
Air temperature: 34.6°F
Water temperature: 46.4°F
Water speed: ~4 feet/second
Airspeed: Nil, dead calm (confirmed on TV news weather)
Outdoor relative humidity: 78% (per TV news weather)
Another set of videotapes were made on:
Date: May 22, 2006
Time: 7:05am to 7:25am local (CDT) time
Air temperature: 45.7°F
Water temperature: 56.3°F
Water speed: ~3 feet/second
Airspeed: Nil, dead calm (confirmed on TV news weather)
Outdoor relative humidity: 68% (per TV news weather)
Sun altitude around 15°.
Theory of Formation of Tornadoes, Hurricanes and Waterspouts
|The mathematical basis for these steps is very simple and straightforward, and calculations generally seem to confirm the Energy Audit regarding velocities observed.|
It has been immensely frustrating to me to watch as terribly destructive hurricanes such as Katrina in 2005 have done such massive damage, where I think there might actually have been a (remote?) possibility of degrading such hurricanes far before they had ever approached land. Had I somehow been more persuasive in getting government personnel to have interest in my concept, who knows whether Katrina might even have ever existed? But in my attempts at dozens of visits and interviews in the Spring of 2002, only a single individual was even willing to spend a few minutes to listen to me (after I had spent a week of my time in trying to provide this information to them!) He was extremely interested and extremely impressed, and he even mentioned that he thought it might have a chance of working. He then mentioned to me a number of rather hare-brained ideas that their Agencies had previously tried, such as flying cargo aircraft filled with many tons of bags of concrete through the Eye of a hurricane and dumping them, in an apparent attempt at paving over the ocean inside the Eye! Unfortunately, he ended the interview by mentioning that he was about to retire shortly and that he no longer had any pull around there. He promised me to try to get some of his colleagues to listen to my concept before he left, but that must not have ever had any effect, as no one ever later contacted me.
By the way, during that same trip in early 2002, I contacted a number of people in and near New Orleans, by phone and by e-mail, including the Mayor of New Orleans and several City Engineers, and also Joe Suhayda, a known researcher on hurricanes who had warned of danger to New Orleans due to hurricanes. None of those people even responded to any of my phone calls or letters. But I had then (more than three years before Katrina) attempted to warn them of aspects of their situation where the Physics indicated great danger. Sadly, no one seemed to have any interest in my concerns then. I might note that when Katrina hit, it had degraded down to a Category 3 hurricane, and also that it had actually entirely missed hitting New Orleans! It amazes me that people who later decided to "revise history" portray Katrina as a tremendously damaging hurricane! It was nowhere near as strong as the hurricane Andrew that devastated Florida or a number of other giants. Had Katrina actually remained at Category 5 (which it had earlier been) and actually hit New Orleans, the devastation probably would have been far greater than what actually happened. But I guess all that is "politics" and "spin" where leaders keep insisting that New Orleans will be "rebuilt better than ever", essentially without any funding to actually do it. However, spending hundreds of billions of dollars more to rebuild that city would be very foolish, as between future, stronger hurricanes and rising sea levels, it may only be 20 years before New Orleans (currently 7 feet below sea level and still protected by those 117 miles of dikes) will be forever abandoned as being entirely underwater.
My contact with New Orleans at that time (early 2002) was not actually regarding hurricanes, but due to the fact that I realized that their situation, of slowly sinking into the recent sediment of a river delta, was very similar to the one where I was then attempting to provide a way for Venice, Italy to actually physically raise their city by around five feet. In any case, current hurricane research now really has no way to help them. New Orleans will remain as a very small town, but even that will probably have to be moved to a different location where they will be at a higher altitude, but even that will result in New Orleans never coming back the way we once knew it.
A very rough estimate of the amount of kinetic energy in a mature hurricane is around 1018 joules, or 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 joules. As a comparison, if every one of the hundred million operating cars in America were run at absolutely full throttle, they all would have to run like that for about 20 hours straight to produce that much energy! That gives a rough idea why traditional methods of Engineering would have no noticeable effect on a hurricane, because of the enormous size and strength. All that energy cannot just be made to disappear, but must somehow be dissipated (be converted to other forms of energy, primarily frictional heating of other air).
Current research into hurricanes seems to focus on the central areas, where the winds are highest, near the "eye". However, even superficial calculation shows that the majority of the actual kinetic energy contained in a hurricane resides in the huge outer areas. Even though the winds are slower there, the vast quantity of moving air carries most of the energy of movement. This fact has therefore encouraged this new approach at degrading a hurricane, by attempting to cause disruptions, destabilizations, in the perimeter of the storm, to cause energy to be dispersed there (probably as tornadoes spawned off).
This involves no attempt to "over-power" the hurricane! Rather, it uses the energy that is already in the hurricane by encouraging some of that energy to get "out-of-phase" with the main circulation of the hurricane. This out-of-phase energy becomes disruptive, with the intended result to create many (small) tornadoes which remove kinetic energy from the main circulation of the hurricane.
It has long been noticed that, in the late stages of a hurricane's existence, many (brief) tornadoes often appear along their borders. Such tornadoes have extremely fast-moving winds, but their relatively small size means they contain only a fraction of the energy of a hurricane. They each therefore remove fairly large amounts of rotational energy from the hurricane in very short periods of time. These tornadoes are clearly a very energy-expensive aspect of hurricanes, and they are never seen early in the life of a hurricane. My interest is to try to use this existing natural phenomenon, but to artificially inspire it to occur much earlier in the life-sequence of a hurricane!
If this tornado-spawning process can be artificially induced, well before a hurricane approaches land, large amounts of the circulation energy should be removable from the hurricane by this process, and the hurricane would then necessarily be degraded in strength. No one could know or plan where the tornadoes might form or where they might go, so it would be critically important to do this process far from all land and human activities. However, the advantage is that tornadoes have very short lifetimes, and never travel very far before self-degrading due to frictional losses, where the main hurricane would have damage-creating potential for many days over a very large region.
The speculation here is that a hurricane that can be artificially caused to spawn hundreds of such tornadoes (while still over the ocean) might thereby quickly give up substantial amounts of its kinetic rotational energy to those tornadoes and the hurricane remaining would thereby rapidly get weaker. Once separated from the hurricane, each tornado would soon lose its kinetic energy by normal friction to the surrounding air. That two-stage process would therefore accomplish dissipating a great deal of energy rather quickly. This seems like a possibility worth looking into.
One way or another, when a hurricane disappears, all that kinetic energy of rotation must become converted into frictional heating of local air and ground. It has long been believed that friction with the ground is a major cause of the relatively rapid diminution of a hurricane's strength when over land. However, the resulting increase in that ground's temperature would be significant, due to the enormous amount of kinetic energy which must be dissipated. Clearly, the creation of peripheral tornadoes, which quickly dissipate and therefore give up their rotational kinetic energy into frictional heating of the air, must also represent a significant method of hurricane energy reduction.
This concept is here seen as a significant possibility regarding how to remove large amounts of energy from hurricanes, to inspire them to spontaneously spawn tornadoes earlier in their existence.
It seems prudent to try to deal with a hurricane well before it nears any land, out in the open ocean. For one thing, it then has less total kinetic energy of rotating winds to try to dissipate. We wish to (externally) cause small turbulences in the outer circulation of it, with the intent of encouraging it to form those tornadoes at that time. Being away from land and people, such tornadoes would not cause any damage, but they would collectively remove large amounts of kinetic energy from the hurricane circulation, thereby weakening it. The premise of this application is that if hundreds of such tornadoes could be artificially spawned from a hurricane, the remaining kinetic energy would be greatly reduced, either degrading or dissipating the hurricane.
There are several other possible applications of this concept, mentioned below, but this tornado-inducer might be the simplest of them.
What IS important is that the tone of the emitted sound be extremely constant and at a very precise frequency, which is dependent on characteristics of the specific wineglass. A standard engineering design principle, called "forced vibration", explains this action. Each arriving air shock wave causes a tiny shock wave to form within the glass, which then proceeds across the glass to the other side where it reflects back to the starting point. If each new arriving wave it timed very carefully, to match vibrations that have already been started within the glass and which are oscillating back and forth across it, the net effect is a gradual increasing in the actual amplitude of the vibration of some areas of the glass. At some point, the localized vibrations grow to become so intense that the very structure of the glass is destroyed.
A similar but less spectacular example is when a guitar is placed in front of a loudspeaker of a stereo system. If a long constant note is in the music, one or more of the guitar strings can start to vibrate, seemingly magically. It is really just Forced Vibration. Guitar players sometimes make use of this phenomenon and simply call it feedback.
Think of an even simpler example of "forced vibration" where you push a child on a playground swing. If you would randomly time your pushes, not much would be accomplished, but if you select your timing, your small pushes will gradually get the swing to traveling very high. You could never have gotten the child and swing going that high with simple "brute force"! You have recognized and used a natural resonance of the swing to accomplish big swinging.
In a way nearly identical to the wineglass and loudspeaker, now imagine a hurricane and a specially outfitted ship a number of miles away from it. The ship has a mechanism to create shock waves in the air, effectively extremely low frequency sound waves, at a frequency that is determined by the characteristics of the hurricane size and rotation. With just moderate (achievable) power in those emitted sound waves, a gradual, cumulative effect would develop within the hurricane, causing internal disruptive "vibrations", de-stabilizing the peripheral circulation of the hurricane in a way relatively similar to the wineglass shattering. (There is no attempt or intention to immediately affect the central motions of the hurricane, but only an attempt at "peeling off" or developing sub-sub-sonic turbulence in the outer portions of the circulation.)
This simplified description is of the more crude of two potential mechanism methods (which we shall call a monopole resonator). Following the logic above, one sees that it is certain to work, but the turbulences that are introduced into a hurricane might tend to be random, and the exact manner of dissipation would have some uncertainty. This may or may not involve some safety considerations. A more sophisticated quadrupole resonance method would be more difficult to arrange, but the result should be a very "organized" degradation of the hurricane, in known and consistent ways, with no dangerous surprises lurking.
Another simple method seems possible to accomplish the same thing. If a series of sturdy aircraft stay near the outer edges of a hurricane, each having GPS (global positioning system) equipment and a supply of "percussion bombs", a similar result might be achieved. Percussion bombs resemble the loudest "bombs" in a fireworks display, where a single very loud shock wave is created. If the aircraft could arrange to be dropping larger percussion bombs at precisely equal intervals in the same position in a hurricane, a series of shock waves would be created. If the timing (frequency) was carefully selected regarding a natural frequency of the hurricane circulation, a Forced Vibration resonance might be generated. The only hazard in this method is that if a tornado suddenly developed unexpectedly, one or more of the aircraft might be in danger.
Yet another and even simpler approach was mentioned above, involving a series of slightly supersonic (Mach 1.1) aircraft. Each would follow a level course, first paralleling the counter-clockwise rotation of the hurricane. At a specified location, the aircraft would turn outward (right) to a direction at about 45° from a radius line to the center of the hurricane, and then immediately make a fairly tight (around 1.5 G) (radius around 5 miles) turn (left) toward the hurricane. The ideal path seems to closely resemble a logarithmic spiral, but other path shapes might also have merit. Once the aircraft has gotten to the point of moving in a direction about 45° inward of tangential, the aircraft would turn right and leave the area. The desired result of this is that the resultant sonic boom from around 45 seconds of flight would all arrive at a single vertical target line destination, around 5 miles radially inward, simultaneously. Aircraft researchers call this a superboom. As mentioned above, the shock wave that is created by a supersonic aircraft at low speeds such as Mach 1.1 is intense, creating a momentary pressure differential of around 8" of atmospheric pressure at the aircraft. Pressure differentials drive wind motions. The premise is that a continued substantial over-pressure, or even drastic fluctuations in local air pressure, in that one target location would artificially create local winds that would travel outward in all directions. These artificial air motions would represent disruptions to the general circulation of the hurricane. This approach should therefore inspire irregular motions in that circulation. If several such supersonic aircraft would follow each other through that flight path, each 45 seconds later, a continuous disruptive effect must certainly occur. It is hard to see how the orderly circulation of the hurricane could continue with this effect occurring. Additionally, if specific resonances of the hurricane have been recognized, the aircraft could follow slightly hyperbolic paths, and their interval spacing could be arranged to inspire more effective disruptions of the circulation due to magnification of those natural resonant motions of the hurricane.
From a Physics perspective, a rotary motion like the circular motion of air in a hurricane, can be considered to be a vibration in two directions, with what is called two degrees of freedom, ninety degrees out of phase with each other. As such, standard engineering analysis of vibratory motion can be applied, including analysis of factors that enhance or degrade that vibratory motion. (Some of the mathematics for this are included later in this article.) This can allow standard resonance concepts to be applied. The engineering concept of "forced vibration" seems especially important, particularly in the natural formation of a hurricane. Such forced-vibration resonances must certainly be instrumental in first enabling a hurricane to form and grow, because a non-resonance situation (i.e., without a "magnification factor") would naturally quickly dissipate the rotary energy as peripheral frictional losses with slower exterior air. Only a resonance situation seems to permit the meta-stable growth of such rotary motion beyond a few seconds.
The enormous amounts of energy transferred from the water to the air by this evaporation is partially used up in giving upward kinetic velocity to the air, making it rise. But that can only consume a small portion of the energy which is being provided. If the energy remains as water vapor, that energy is not released, but if temperature and humidity conditions are such that the water vapor might condense into cloud/fog droplets, truly immense amounts of energy are then released into the air, far more than can be used up in giving the air upward velocity. This results in MOST of the energy being converted into Kinetic Energy of ROTATION. Calculations seem to confirm that this is a realistic hypothesis.
I have done this analysis for hundreds of individual vortices that I have watched. I would first calculate the amount of water that could evaporate from the warm water in the size of the footprint of the vortex. Then I would calculate how much energy had to be released when that water vapor would condense into water droplets. Then I would calculate the amount of kinetic energy consumed in the vertical motion seen in the entire structure. And then, assuming Conservation of Energy, the remainder of the energy audit was calculated as giving rotary kinetic energy to the vortex. In virtually all cases of such calculations, the calculated spin rate was very close to the observed spin rate! This seems to be solid experimental evidence that this explanation is valid.
Have you ever heard a feedback squeal from a Public Address system? This is the same phenomenon, where some extremely minor initial sound, at a specific resonant frequency, began a feedback loop to very rapidly overload the amplifier system.
Around a hundred years ago, a brilliant inventor, Nikola Tesla, had a laboratory in an upper story loft of a building in Manhattan in New York. In one experiment, he had bolted a rather small vibrating device to one of the main structural beams of the building. He started the device vibrating. Apparently, the small device was vibrating at a particularly unfortunate frequency. Over a period of the next few hours, the vibrations he was creating were being transferred to the building's foundation and into the very bedrock under Manhattan. He wasn't even aware of it but for blocks around, people thought an earthquake was happening and many windows broke and a lot of damage occurred to buildings. A number of blocks away, the local Police Precinct was concerned that their building was going to collapse! Many Officers spread out among the community to make sure the people would be safe, and one happened on Tesla, and realized that there might be a connection and ordered him to shut it off. The "earthquake" immediately stopped.
Have you ever seen the short movie of the Tacoma Narrows bridge that started twisting and eventually destroyed itself in a fairly constant moderate wind? No enormous windspeed was involved, but the extended constant wind permitted the narrow bridge structure to begin to resonate at a natural frequency.
In these examples, a rather small repetitive motion eventually caused enormously larger consequences, if it is maintained at a consistent, precise specific natural resonant frequency.
This is essentially the basic concept of both the Monopole and the Quadrupole Resonator in dealing with degrading hurricanes.
Calculations seem to assure that a special method of (externally) radiating infrasonic sound waves at the exact frequency of the hurricane's resonant frequency will work excellently at de-stabilizing the structure of a hurricane. This conclusion is based on the mathematical analysis of this resonance concept and the gradual building effect of its power. The externally presented tone does not appear to have to be especially loud, but the cumulative resonance effect builds over the hours. It is not really the artificially introduced sound that finally destroys the hurricane but rather it inspires an undamped, magnified, harmonic resonance within the hurricane itself which causes it to destroy itself.
The hurricane application is somewhat more sophisticated than those cited examples, but it is actually based on the exact same basic concept. The only thing necessary is to introduce a regular and consistent frequency of VERY low frequency (resonant) sound waves to the hurricane from the outside. The two different methods accomplish the goal in slightly different ways, but gradually, the resonance effect would disrupt the smooth and regular rotating motion of the storm, and the hurricane would essentially self-destruct! There are several possible approaches, including introducing artificial resonance AT the main harmonic resonant frequency but slightly out of phase, or of attacking a higher harmonic frequency to inspire sub-cell rotations of smaller circulations within the main hurricane circulation. This last, for example, could introduce vibratory air motion at one or two octaves above the natural resonant frequency to encourage four smaller circulations to develop within the storm. Once these circulations began to develop, the friction between the airflows of the developed smaller circulations would rapidly drain energy from the storm's circulation, quickly degrading it by essentially using natural resonances to break it into several smaller adjacent storms, which would then destroy each other.
As the artificial shock waves impinge on the storm circulation, the effects can be of random character, causing localized airflows to have increased or decreased vector velocities in virtually all directions. Or they could be timed to artificially emphasize some natural resonance of the hurricane circulation. In all cases, this effect would be to effectively de-stabilize the storm's circulation, but the subsequent pattern of the storm's behavior would be uncertain.
Several possible resonant frequencies could be tried with this method. One interesting possibility is related to how quickly the effect of our shock wave impacting the perimeter of the storm takes to disappear. That "rebound effect" certainly exists. If we sent in shock waves that were timed to match that impact/rebound cycle time, a very effective perturbation effect could be accomplished. The outer edges of the storm would then quickly become unstable, no longer moving in circular paths but in wavy paths, which would both use up energy from the storm and inspire turbulent spalling of smaller storms (possibly such as tornadoes) that would remove substantial amounts of energy from the storm.
An interesting consequence of such an interference pattern is that there are locations where a "second order" effect occurs, that of a net LATERAL motion of the air molecules. The two ships would each be having the effect of being Monopole sources, which each would act to degrade the hurricane as described above. But, with careful planning, this quadrupole effect would introduce a pulsed lateral acceleration or deceleration in the winds at the perimeter of the hurricane.
By being able to introduce planned tangential velocity gradients into the winds along the perimeter of a hurricane, it would be possible to carefully control the entire process of degrading the hurricane. However many smaller circulations were inspired would be at the choice of the engineer, and so either a series of small "cells" could be "spalled off" of the main body of the hurricane, slowly degrading it methodically, or larger disruptions could be introduced to break it apart in just a single step.
Being able to produce such lateral air motion, at a distance, and at a specific frequency, is the center of this Quadrupole resonator concept. By timing the created wave pulses properly, and spacing the two ships properly, nearly any desired sequence of attrition could be arranged.
A single pulse like any of these would have irrelevant effect. The entire premise is based on the Forced Vibration design engineering concepts, where repetition of those pulses at frequency rates that matched natural frequencies (or harmonics) of the hurricane create a cumulative effect, due to the exact same physics principles that enabled the formation of the hurricane in the first place.
As the large flat surface would move forward and back, it would be acting like an enormous stereo speaker, a REALLY low frequency "woofer" like in a stereo system, with very high effective audio power. Calculations (regarding an early, immature hurricane) suggest that the barges could each oscillate their sheets forward and back at about five minute intervals (or some fixed multiple of that, to create higher order harmonics of the basic natural frequency). The actual timing would be dependent on the characteristics of that particular storm.
There are some unknowns here, and laboratory tests on small scale artificial hurricanes should quickly confirm whether the most effective frequency would be the natural frequency, or half of it, or double it.
(The hurricane's resonant frequency changes with time, becoming lower as it grows larger and includes more rotating mass. It is fairly easily calculable using standard Physics equations.)
The results of the movements of these moving surfaces would feel just like gusts of air, but recurring at very precise intervals. For complicated reasons, the two barges would do that action "180 degrees out of phase with each other" (and that is the 'Quadrupole' part of the concept). The two extremely low frequency 'sound sources' would develop their "interference pattern" at a distance. A major desired effect of this (Quadrupole approach) is a regular, periodic lateral movement of the air at the distance where the perimeter of the hurricane was. (If they had been 'in-phase' this effect would generally not exist). That induced (distant) lateral pulsating air movement is what primarily acts to disrupt the hurricane, without any mechanism having to actually be within it. The resonant relationship between the frequency of that repeated movement and the natural frequency of the hurricane is what allows the "amplification effect" to gradually grow more and more effective in disrupting the hurricane.
The amount of power generated in the artificial sound waves is infinitesimally smaller than the power in the hurricane itself. This comparatively low power activity of the barges would gradually have a greater and greater effect on the hurricane, because of the resonance between the hurricane and the barge oscillators. As long as the proper frequency is used, the effect would eventually be disruptive to the circular flow of the hurricane, and it would either not initially form or it would disperse.
This is all technology and machinery that is currently available!
The math and engineering behind this is all pretty simple and straightforward. Any decent engineer should be able to confirm these statements. Just based on the above, it should be possible to do the math of the physics and engineering that confirms it, and to design and build suitable equipment.
While attending a wild-west display at a Great America park in the 1990s, they fired a number of large fireballs for dramatic effect. We were sitting around 200 feet away from where the fireballs went off, but we clearly experienced two effects, a blast of heat AND a brief rush of air! This last, the rush of air, was a direct result of the shock wave generated as the air at the fireball rapidly expanded (Ideal gas law) as it heated from 70°F up to over 2,000°F. THAT physical shock wave of air motion is the center of this concept.
An even better configuration of such a concept might be to mount a number of vertical gas supply pipes in a slightly curved line, essentially down the centerline of the barge, with orifices along their whole heights. When gas valves were opened, there would suddenly (and momentarily) be a thin "wall" of combustible gas. When ignited, a momentary "wall of fire" would light up. This would cause rapid heating and expansion of the nearby air, creating a very large and powerful PLANAR sub-sonic audio shock-wave that is desired.
This nearly flat shock waves would propagate outward toward both sides, so there would be no rolling reaction to the barge as a result. There should be value in putting the vertical pipes in a very slight arc rather than in an exact straight line. If the concave side of that structure was toward the hurricane, the curvature could act to (optically) "focus" more of the subsonic waves' power into a narrower destination target, to improve effectiveness.
Such barges should certainly have stabilizers, so that the orientation of the created shock waves in the air was consistently maintained.
Obviously, there is something unique in the formation of a hurricane, which overcomes this natural effect of energy dissipation. Whatever those unique characteristics are, they certainly rely on an effective application of a (natural) forced vibration and its resonant effects. A hurricane does not form instantly. It gradually grows in size and strength and intensity. This is an example of the physics concept of amplification (magnification) at a resonant frequency, like in the public address amplifier 'feedback loop' example mentioned above.
Since hurricanes must then necessarily FORM due to an extended exposure to resonant effects that magnify their power and intensity, this approach is meant to use the same concept against them! At very early stages in their development, an assortment of approaches might be effective, from introducing out-of-phase rotational energy AT the natural frequency (in an application of the Quadrupole approach) to introducing entirely different resonant frequencies, either near the resonant frequency or at harmonic multiples of it (with the intention of driving the storm formation into several other, smaller circulations, so that the large later hurricane could not form).
The bulk of this presentation is based on the assumption that an organized circulation has already formed and must be dealt with. Once the resonance effect has begun to substantially magnify, attempting to modify the natural frequency is very difficult, and so the basic approaches described here focus on the fact that the natural frequency is already well established. With this fact given, the methods described above seems most likely to best reduce or dissipate the storm. As has been noted though, a number of variations could be tried, to see which approach most effectively de-stabilized the hurricane. It might even be that different approaches are most effect at deterring the initial formation of the storms and at de-stabilizing well-established ones.
As should be obvious in all this, since a hurricane initially takes many hours of stable resonant conditions in first forming, it would also certainly take quite a few hours of introducing detrimental harmonic resonant energy in order to degrade it.
The solution to thess differential equations can be written in the form of:
where e represents a variable generally called eccentricity (but which has a different meaning than the astronomical meaning of the term).
One can see that if the forcing frequency were exactly the same as the natural frequency, the denominator goes to zero and the amplitude of the oscillatory motion therefore goes to infinity. In mechanical systems, this is akin to the situation when a device disintegrates due to unexpected vibrations. These equations are for the situation for a system which has no damping factor, which cannot actually occur in any real mechanical device. However, the general theme of this reasoning still applies.
When a damping factor exists, if the forced frequency is exactly the same as the natural frequency, the denominator of the solutions drop to their lowest value, which causes the amplitude of the resulting resonant motion to reach its greatest value, the so-called 'magnification factor'. The limit on the magnification factor is therefore based on the amount of damping present. With minimal damping present, the resulting resonant effect can be extreme. In the case of disrupting a circulating storm, such a very large amplitude would be desirable, in that it would introduce harmonic radial (and tangential) air pulsations into the winds that would normally circulate relatively smoothly.
This all suggests that there are several resultant effects, ALL of which would act to degrade the storm. Introducing repetitive harmonic 'dents' in the exterior of the circulation should act to inspire smaller interior circulations (in a Monopole configuration), with the added benefit of the magnification factor. The 'quadrupole resonance' concept should introduce a modification of peripheral air velocities at certain consistent points, acting to either degrade the circulation (at the natural frequency) or inspire smaller interior circulations (at harmonic multiple frequencies). The 'magnification' factor at certain forced vibration frequencies would act to increase the effectiveness of these degrading efforts.
The 'quadrupole resonance' concept should introduce a modification of peripheral air velocities at certain consistent points, acting to either degrade the circulation (at the natural frequency) or inspire smaller interior circulations (at harmonic multiple frequencies). The 'magnification' factor would again act to increase the effectiveness of these degrading efforts.
There is an additional complication in applying forced vibration technology to hurricane dynamics. It is related to the fact that ongoing genesis of the storm acts to keep replenishing the 'free' or 'natural' circulation or vibration. This does not actually change any of the actions described in this article, but it might alter the exact frequency that should be chosen for the artificially introduced subsonic vibrations. Determining the effective damping factor zeta might therefore have to be empirical. It may even be a 'negative damping' since a hurricane acts to grow in energy at its natural frequency rather than having that energy damped out. In addition, with such uncertainty in the effective value of the damping factor, the magnification factor may also depend on empirical findings. Therefore, optimization of this approach may need to be refined from experimental data, in order to select the most effective forced frequency.
Without a 'magnification factor', the natural friction losses at the ocean surface and the outer perimeter would quickly dissipate an initial tropical depression. The 'magnification factor' is a necessary aspect of the natural growth, and it must be substantially above 1.0 in order to provide growth after also counter-acting the frictional losses.
The same calculations and analysis might also explain why standard weather cyclones and anti-cyclones tend to be of relatively consistent sizes, of a few hundred miles across. It seems possible that a forced vibration analysis might 'predict' the approximate size of such relatively stable circulations, given the rotation of the earth and other effects that act on them. If that should be the case, weather forecasting might have another tool available.
As that shock wave propagates out, as a simple sudden gust of air, various losses will occur, due to the shock wave spreading and due to frictional losses as it passes through the air. It will be necessary to do experimental tests to determine how much energy remains a mile away and at other distances. It should still be a significant remaining amount of force when it arrives at the perimeter of the hurricane.
Let's speculate for a moment that an effective area at the hurricane's perimeter is comparable to that of the originating source area, mostly due to the focusing effect of the slight concavity of the radiator. Let's also speculate that 99% of the original energy had been lost, and 1% remained. The 720 thousand pounds of remaining arriving force, applied in a quick and even burst in a fairly localized area like that, will impart a RADIALLY INWARD velocity to that portion of the hurricane, of significant size. The effect will be a slight disruption of the otherwise smooth circular flow of the hurricane.
The general circular motion of the storm would soon re-develop, and the time interval for that impact and rebound would represent an important resonance situation. If such pulse impacts continue to be applied at either that frequency or precisely at a simple harmonic multiple of the hurricane's natural frequency, each new pulse will arrive at a location where some residual disturbance remains from the previous revolution's pulse in that exact same spot. After continually pounding the same positions on the perimeter of the storm for many revolutions, the physics of forced vibration and its magnification factor will make the disturbances will grow to have an existence of their own, primarily because of their sharing "growth frequencies" with the storm. (See the equations above) After a hundred or a thousand impacts at the same locus, the effect should become disruptive to the original main storm circulation, since smaller scale internal circulations have been created. The mutual friction of those smaller circulations would then quickly destroy them, too.
In the case of the Monopole Resonator, applied at an impact/rebound frequency, the net effect of an extended series of these impinging waves would be to introduce a designed waviness in the otherwise smooth circular motion of the air. This waviness represents a turbulence, essentially as though the Reynolds number had been greatly increased. Such turbulence is certain to have energy-robbing effects to the hurricane. One reasonable possibility is that "designer-tornadoes" would be spalled off of the perimeter of the hurricane, each removing a substantial amount of energy from the hurricane itself. These tornadoes would be similar to those spalled off of many hurricanes in their normal process of attrition over land. However, since this would be done under controlled conditions, they would intentionally be created far at sea, away from any habitation. The tornadoes themselves would have short lifetimes and would never persist long enough to get to inhabited areas. After having caused the spalling of hundreds of such tornadoes, the remaining rotational kinetic energy and strength of a hurricane should be greatly degraded. At some point of weakness, this process will lose effectiveness, but the hurricane should then have been degraded into a weak tropical depression.
This approach is essentially permitting the hurricane to continue its normal energy intake and growth, but costing it more in peripheral energy losses than it can gain in its normal growth.
In any case, all I'd like to show is that the concept will disperse an artificial hurricane in a test lab, to demonstrate that the concept works. Upon witnessing that, authorities could then figure out whether they want to actually try it!
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C Johnson, Theoretical Physicist, Physics Degree from Univ of Chicago