What is a hurricane?

A hurricane is a large storm characterised by very strong winds. If a tropical cyclone has winds over 74mph(119km/h) and it forms in the Atlantic Ocean, it is known as a hurricane. There are 5 categories of hurricane numbered 1 to 5. The most severe category 5 hurricanes can have winds up to 200mph(320km/h). The hurricane develops around an area of low pressure(the eye) and the winds rotate in an anti clockwise direction around this point. This is what they look like from space.

Extremely detailed and realistic high resolution 3D illustration of a Hurricane approaching Texas. Shot from Space. Elements of this image are furnished by Nasa.

A hurricane is specific to the area around the USA. A tropical storm formed in the Indian Ocean is called a cyclone, and one formed in the Western Pacific Ocean is called a typhoon.

For more in depth information on hurricanes, please see the following link:

An excellent page from Weather Wiz Kids

For a video on hurricanes, please see below.

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How do clouds form?

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Clouds are formed when the water vapour in air cools down and forms droplets of water or ice. When lots of these droplets come together they form a cloud.

For a more in depth answer from Weather Wiz Kids.

For a video explanation, please see below.

If you prefer to learn by doing, please see this video of a fun experiment.

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Photo credit: Anatoly Tipyashlin via 123rf.com

How do people predict the weather?

The science of weather prediction or forecasting is called meteorology. A person who predicts the weather is a meteorologist.

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A meteorologist will collect data from a range of sources to show what the current weather conditions are. They then predict what will happen based on what has happened in the past, when the conditions were the same or similar.

Among the type of data collected is air pressure, temperature, wind speed and direction. This data is collected by weather stations which are dotted around the country.

A more in depth answer from Weather Wiz Kids

A video explanation:

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