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Visible satellite image of Hurricane Bonnie while it was a Category 3 hurricane.
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NOAA

Good News from the 1998 Hurricane Season
News story originally written on January 16, 1999

The Atlantic hurricane season was active this year with 14 named storms and 10 hurricanes. (This was above the average of 10 named storms and 6 hurricanes.) The storms killed over 11,000 people and caused over $6.5 billion worth of damage in the United States alone. Positive results from the 1998 season should come from research conducted during four of the hurricanes.

Scientists conducted extensive observations of hurricanes Bonnie, Danielle, Earl, and Georges. They used a variety of methods to collect the datasets: aircraft flying into and above the storms, satellite observations, and surface observing networks.

"Although these opportunities do not provide immediate comfort to those who directly experienced this season's devastating storms, the wealth of information collected by all the agencies will lead to better hurricane forecast capabilities in the future," said Robbie Hood of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center.

The data collected by the research team will help scientists determine the different factors that affect hurricane movement. When we understand the steering mechanisms for the storms, the forecasts will become more precise.

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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA