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Researchers and forecasters often study sea surface temperatures for an indication of hurricane potential. Scientists say above normal Atlantic Ocean temperatures is one reason for the "above normal" hurricane forecast. Hurricanes convert heat from the tropical atmosphere and oceans to wind and waves, just as a car engine converts gasoline into motion. These animations show a year in the life of global ocean temperatures, June 2, 2002 to May 11, 2003. Green indicates the coolest water, yellow the warmest. The Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) on the Aqua satellite saw through the clouds to provide sea surface temperatures.
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