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See Dramatic Video Recorded Inside a Hurricane by a Sailing Drone

In a dramatic scientific first, Saildrone Inc. and NOAA have released the first video footage gathered by an uncrewed surface vehicle (USV) from inside a major hurricane barreling across the Atlantic Ocean.

The Saildrone Explorer SD 1045 was directed into the midst of Hurricane Sam, a category 4 hurricane, which was on a path that fortunately missed the U.S. east coast. SD1045 battled 50-foot waves and winds of over 120 mph to collect critical scientific data to give a completely new view of one of earth’s most destructive forces.

Equipped with a specially designed “hurricane wing,” enabling it to operate in extreme wind conditions, SD 1045 braved Hurricane Sam in the open ocean, collecting real-time observations for numerical hurricane prediction models, which are expected to yield new insights into how large and destructive tropical cyclones grow and intensify.

SD 1045 is one of a fleet of five “hurricane” Saildrones that have been operating in the Atlantic Ocean during hurricane season, gathering data around the clock to help understand the physical processes of hurricanes. This knowledge is critical to improving storm forecasting and is expected to reduce loss of human life by allowing better preparedness in coastal communities.

You can read more about it on NOAA’s website.

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