We can make a ring of hurricanes which pumps vast amounts of heat away from the Earth, to mitigate the effects of global warming.

Circle of Storms

Like pillars surrounding a temple, each hurricane’s warm-core funnels heat high into the air, where it disperses and radiates into space. The air cools, and descends, tugged into a downward spiral along the inside of the ring of hurricanes, forming a cold-core Nor’easter. Similarly for the outer edge of the hurricane ring. The cooling, descending air drapes the ring of pillars, holding them together. A ring of hurricanes is meta-stable — it will retain its shape, even when buffeted by wind shear or smooshed against coastlines.

Because it has some local stability, a ring of hurricanes will maintain the eye walls as wind speeds and size diminish. The hurricanes will remain coherent structures, even as less energy flows through them as heat. So, you can create these coherent structures when temperature differences are smaller than during normal hurricane formation. You can make many tiny hurricanes, instead of one big one.

If the ring of tiny hurricanes was a doughnut, the cold air descending around it would be like a frosting poured on top, sliding down the inner and outer sides of the doughnut. That shell of cooler air protects the hurricanes from outside forces, and pushes them together into a tight ring. This is a tiny ring, not a vast billowing hurricane that causes damage across multiple countries. And, because it is tiny and metastable, this ring can be nudged by adjacent convection — you can reliably steer it into open waters, to protect people.

Safe from Cyclones

Cyclones and hurricanes only occur because of an increase in warm, humid air along the ocean surface. Creating a tiny ring of hurricanes, you ventilate that heat. You have prevented additional hurricanes from forming, by taking their heat away. So, the billions of dollars in damages, the loss of life from annual cyclones and hurricanes, can be completely prevented. Just vent that heat with tiny doughnuts.

That ventilation of heat can continue, even when temperature differences are smaller than normal hurricanes. ‘Cuz of the ring’s metastability. So, you can continue using these rings as heat pumps through a larger portion of the year, and over a larger range of latitudes — these metastable rings could pump a decade’s heat in a year or two. That’s what we need to head-off global warming. Those colder surface waters will generate more sea ice, too.

But, How?

A buoy, with a weight on a string beneath it, bobs in the open ocean. That string is attached to a small piston, like a slide whistle. Each bob in the waves tugs and relaxes the plunger of that whistle, pumping a few droplets of water through a nozzle, as spray into the air. Together with millions of its plastic buoy brethren, this weight and bob sputter swimming pools of warm water, raising surface humidity and temperature. Micro-fountains, powered by waves.

Then, when the air is heavy and hot from the sun, vast inflated whales surface in a ring. Each whale’s mouth is a wide, slow turbine, funneling air from its spout to its snout. The turbines don’t need much power — they are like the nudge that sends an avalanche. As soon as the waterspouts form, the whales submerge for their own protection, because the hurricane ring accelerates quickly.

An area only a few dozen miles across can be supplied by moist air from hundreds of miles around, forming a heat pump that survives for weeks. A multitude of these hurricane rings, over the course of many months, could buy us time to heal the climate.

Written by

Easily distracted mathematician

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