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Drone planes research hurricanes

As the hurricane season takes off in the US so too will drone planes which will fly into the eye of the storms. It is part of an ongoing project funded by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to monitor the Earth's atmosphere. Two to five flights will be launched during the six month hurricane season and will send back a continuous stream of information. The planes can fly into the eye of a storm at just 300 feet above sea level. As well as predicting the intensity of hurricanes, researchers will also use the planes to track how fast Arctic summer ice will melt and whether Pacific storms will flood the west coast of America. In late 2008, large unmanned aircraft will observe sea ice conditions in the Arctic and track the locations of seal populations as the climate warms. In spring 2009, low and high altitude unmanned vehicles will fly over the Pacific to study atmospheric rivers. Future missions will monitor fisheries, track Greenland glaciers, preserve natural resources and examine murky plumes of volcanic emissions.

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