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What is the energy that powers a hurricane derived from?

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Quick Answer

The power of a hurricane is ultimately derived from sunlight. During hurricane season, sunlight warms the surface of the ocean, which increases the rate of surface evaporation and saturates the air with water. Wind, which is also driven by uneven solar heating, then pushes the storm front across the ocean.

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Full Answer

As it travels over water, a hurricane grows in wind speed and intensity. On reaching land, the hurricane can no longer draw water vapor from the surface, and much of the energy initially provided by the sun is lost. Eventually, the hurricane weakens and becomes disorganized before dissolving into a series of smaller weather patterns.

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