Great amounts of energy are transferred when warm water is evaporated from tropical seas. This energy is stored within the water vapour contained in moist air. As this air ascends, 90% of the stored energy is released by condensation, giving rise to the towering cumulus clouds and rain. The release of heat energy warms the air locally causing a further decrease in pressure aloft. Consequently, air rises faster to fill this area of low pressure, and more warm moist air is drawn off the sea feeding further energy to the system. Thus a self-sustaining heat engine is created.
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For a tropical wave to turn into a hurricane, it needs something to give it a twist and it needs convection," A hurricane is a giant heat engine like a boiler, taking moisture from the surface and shooting it skyward. As water vapor condenses into rain, evaporates and condenses again, it releases energy that helps drive the engine. "Our microwave atmospheric profiler measures how temperature and water vapor are distributed inside the hurricane," storm's internal processes energy.