published Friday, May 24th, 2013

Tennessee man says microwave technology can stop tornadoes

  • photo
    A Tullahoma, Tenn., electrician says he has an idea that could make the nation tornado-proof — using the same technology that warms food in microwaves to stop twisters before they start.
    Photo by The Tennessean /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

A Tullahoma, Tenn., electrician says he has an idea that could make the nation tornado-proof — using the same technology that warms food in microwaves to stop twisters before they start.

Chuck Mangino posted a video last year that explains how a maser — microwave laser — mounted on a 747 airplane could be shot into funnel clouds to disrupt their patterns. It broke the 2,000-view mark on YouTube.com this morning, the result of interest after Monday’s devastation in Oklahoma, Mangino said.

His inspiration came as a fifth-grader in 1968, in a class on tornadoes. His question drew snickers from classmates: “What if they put oven eyes — like the burners — on one side of the airliner and flew them up there before cold air intersected with hot air?”

After surviving a tornado in his van north of Montgomery, Ala., in 1998, he began thinking about the idea in earnest. His work led to last year’s video, where an overall-wearing Mangino uses a stick with a pointed finger on the end of it to highlight drawings of three airplanes on a whiteboard.

Read more at The Tennessean.

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