What would actually happen if you dropped a nuclear bomb into a hurricane? Science has the answer

Rob Waugh
Super Typhoon Yutu, strongest storm on Earth in 2018. But what would happen if you nuked it? (Getty)

What would actually happen if you threw a hydrogen bomb into a hurricane? Would it dissipate the storm, as Donald Trump reportedly hopes?

The Axios news website reported this week that President Trump has repeatedly asked about the possibility of using nuclear weapons to neutralise storms.

Trump has denied the claims.

But an American scientific agency says that storms are so powerful that it would be extremely difficult to use nuclear weapons to dissipate them.

It also says that the knock-on effects - including radioactive fallout - could be ‘devastating’.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) said that dropping nuclear weapons ‘might not even alter the storm.’

Radioactive materials would rapidly poison the storm and could affect land, the NOAA added.

U.S. Navy nuclear test, Bikini Atoll, Marshall Islands

The weather agency said: ‘Radioactive fallout would fairly quickly move with the tradewinds to affect land areas.’

The NOAA said that the problem is focusing the energy at the right point on the storm - and at the right time.

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‘The task of focusing even half of the energy on a spot in the middle of a remote ocean would be formidable,’ it said.

'Attacking weak tropical waves or depressions before they have a chance to grow into hurricanes isn't promising either.

'About 80 of these disturbances form every year in the Atlantic basin but only about five become hurricanes in a typical year. There is no way to tell in advance which ones will develop.'

Mr Trump denied the report on Twitter.

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