TAMPA (CBSMiami.com) – It’s only three feet long and weighs roughly eight pounds, but NOAA is banking on the new plane to help hurricane forecasters improve their forecasts on the strength of a storm.
The plane, called GALE, is set to be unveiled Friday, but will launched for a hurricane hunter plane to fly into the core of the hurricane, according to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
The plane will be dropped into the eye and when it’s nearly out of power, it will fly into the eye wall.
That data will then be fed back to NOAA which will input the data into computer models to help forecasters dealing with hurricanes.
According to the Sun-Sentinel, the drones cost $30,000 and will be powered by an electronic motor. It can travel at roughly 55 miles per hour and fly for around 90 minutes before crashing into the ocean, the Sun-Sentinel reported.
The project is a partnership with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach.