National Geographic : 1967 Oct
Only the cargoes change. Present-day Sindbads load soft drinks aboard a small dhow at Aden, a pivot of East-West trade for thou sands of years. Their lateen-rigged sailing vessel-a type used by Arab sailors for untold centuries to haul spices, silks, gems, and slaves -will take the cargo of Coca-Cola across the gulf to Somalia. river in the ocean slows, stops, and finally flows the other way (diagrams, page 559). In Bombay, farther north and east, a ram bling old astronomical observatory served the IIOE as "weather central." Chattering tele printers and an electronic computer decoded weather data radioed from as far away as Moscow and Tokyo, Canberra and Pretoria. An automatic weather buoy, nicknamed NOMAD, rode at anchor in the Bay of Bengal, transmitting readings around the clock. In struments on a raft in the Arabian Sea meas ured the exchange of heat energy between the ocean and the atmosphere-the "heat 570 engine" that helps drive the world's weather. Balloons 100,000 feet aloft, rockets stab bing 250,000 feet through the stratosphere, and orbiting TIROS, ESSA, and Nimbus weath er satellites, hundreds of miles overhead, re corded energy flowing to and from space, and cloud patterns over the ocean (page 573). Dr. Colin S. Ramage, an American who directed the IIOE weather studies, described to us flights by specially instrumented air craft into the centers of tropical cyclones. Strapped down and hanging on, weathermen measured winds of nearly 120 miles an hour blowing around the eye of one storm.