When the wind speeds of a tropical storm
reach 74 mph, the storm is defined as a hurricane when it
occurs in the North Atlantic or the Caribbean. In the
western Pacific Ocean, hurricanes are called typhoons. In
the Indian Ocean region, the term cyclone is used. The
Atlantic Ocean’s hurricane season runs from June 1st to
November 30. However the hurricane season normally
peaks from mid-August to late October. Over the past
five decades, each season averages five to six hurricanes.
These storms often bring great
destruction. When a hurricane makes landfall, it
creates a storm surge that can reach 20 feet (6 meters) in
height. Storm surge can travel several miles inland.
The area covered by a storm surge can extend up to 100 miles
(161 kilometers). Most hurricane related deaths (+90%)
result from the storm surge. The high winds are also
extremely destructive. Hurricanes may spawn numerous
deadly tornadoes. For example, a hurricane in Texas
caused more than 140 tornados. Torrential rains can
produce significant damage through regional flooding and
resulting landslides. The devastating effects of a
hurricane can occur many miles inland from the hurricane's
Military airbases located along the coastal areas of the
United States (and many airbases abroad) have experienced
significant damage from hurricanes and tropical storms.
Damage and destruction to airbase facilities, aircraft, and
equipment can wreak
havoc on military flight and ground operations.
Damage caused by high winds is a
primary cause of hurricane-inflicted loss of life, injury,
and property damage. But another significant cause of
damage stems from flooding resulting from the coastal storm
surge of the ocean and the heavy, persistent rainfall.
When this occurs, aircraft
sortie production and mission readiness can be significantly
impaired for extended periods of time. This mission
causes a negative ripple effect at other military airbases
and installations across the United
States and internationally.
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has stated
that for hurricane vulnerable areas, impact-resistant glass
and shutters specifically designed to meet a combination of
impact and continuous pressure from the wind are needed to
protect buildings. Reinforcing windows and doors is an
essential step towards creating a critical barrier to
protect a building from wind, wind-borne debris and water
damage. If a building's windows are breached, a
hurricane's wind can exert pressure on the roof and walls,
causing the collapse of the building. Much of the
damage that occurs from a hurricane results from failure of
a building's windows and doors. These failures can initiate
interior wall failure and even roof failure.
hangars and large warehouse structures, the weakest
structural point is typically the doors. Large moving
access doors found in aircraft hangars and warehouse loading
docks can easily buckle and collapse under pressure from
high winds. For this reason, heavy, reinforced door
systems are a smart investment for military airbases and
aviation support facilities located in hurricane prone
In order to minimize damage to facilities, aircraft,
equipment, and injury/death to personnel, airbases along or
near vulnerable coastlines must
adequately prepare for hurricanes and tropical storms.
Airbase hurricane protection measures and contingency plans
must be supported by reliable, capable equipment and
technologies. Civil engineering and disaster preparedness
personnel must be
trained and prepared to properly use this equipment.
Military Airbases from the Forces of Nature
The National Aerospace Organization is hosting a
symposium and exposition on November 15th, 2012 to address
new technologies and innovations for effectively protecting military airbases and commercial airports
from hurricanes, tropical storms and other common
destructive natural forces. Exciting presentations
will be provided to explain and demonstrate the most
effective technologies, construction innovations, and equipment for
minimizing the destructive forces of nature upon military
airbases and its personnel.
Event Page for more Information