Skip to main content
Special Report

Hurricane Katrina's Devastating Lessons

In the 10 years since this deadly storm, which also came in as one of the costliest natural disasters in U.S. history, the nation’s leaders and engineers still struggle to upgrade our preparedness 

Listening In on Hurricanes

Listening In on Hurricanes

Flying a plane over a hurricane to gather data is expensive--and dangerous. Getting equivalent data, by using undersea hydrophones that record the hurricane-driven churning of the ocean may be a cheaper, safer alternative. Cynthia Graber reports

April 15, 2008
Drowning New Orleans

Drowning New Orleans

A major hurricane could swamp New Orleans under 20 feet of water, killing thousands. Human activities along the Mississippi River have dramatically increased the risk, and now only massive reengineering of southeastern Louisiana can save the city

October 1, 2001 — Mark Fischetti
The Science of Monster Storms

The Science of Monster Storms

Extreme weather events are nothing new, but they appear to be gaining strength. Scientists have risked life and limb to help us better understand—and better survive—these storms

October 21, 2014 — Jeff Masters
Instant Egghead--How Do Hurricanes Form?

Instant Egghead--How Do Hurricanes Form?

Hurricane season begins in May and lasts through November, producing dozens of powerful hurricanes. In this episode of Instant Egghead, Scientific American editor Mark Fischetti explains how these massive storms get their start.

May 18, 2012
Hurricane Katrina's Devastating Lessons

In the 10 years since this deadly storm, which also came in as one of the costliest natural disasters in U.S. history, the nation’s leaders and engineers still struggle to upgrade our preparedness