In the late I960s, the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) theorized that it could sap the strength of hurricanes by sprinkling them with a substance known as silver iodide. It was thought that silver-iodide particles would act as nuclei for the formation of ice, causing the water vapor in storms to freeze thereby creating more rain at the periphery of the hurricane. This would draw the strength from the central “eye”. Two hurricanes were massively seeded, one in 1969 and one in 1970, but results were inconclusive. Over the next three decades, a variety of other theories were put forward, but nature always managed to maintain the upper hand. Science shifted its focus, placing emphasis on hurricane detection rather than prevention. New, however, a company in Florida has made some startling discoveries. Dynomat Inc, has created a powder that when air-dropped into a cloud can absorb up to 2,000 times its own weight in moisture, condensation, and rain. “It is moisture that gives hurricanes their strength,” says CEO Peter Cordani―and this is precisely why Dynomat's product is turning heads. The company made history on July 19, 2001, when a large military aircraft scattered 4,000 kilograms of Dynomat powder into a developing thunderstorm. Within minutes, the storm was gone. “I had calls from a weather tower and even from Channel 5 News in Miami,” says an excited Cordani, “saying that they had seen the cloud literally disappear off the radar screen.” The magic of Dynomat's powder is in the structure of the grains, which Cordani describes as “rather like a cornflake,” Their flattish structure creates wind resistance, allowing them to flutter slowly back and forth through the clouds, taking in moisture as they fall. It also gives them a large surface area in order to achieve maximum absorption. And to be more environmentally friendly, the powder has been designed to transform into a gel that dissolves in sea water and safely biodegrades on land. Dynomat's ultimate goal is to combat hurricanes, but the applications for this amazing powder do not stop there. It could be used, for example, to ensure dry weather during important open-air sporting events or concerts. Conversely, the company has found that similar powders can help produce rainfall by coagulating raindrops as they fall, which prevents them from evaporating in the air. This could be effective in bringing moisture to the ground during drought conditions and forest fires. There are concerns about the long-term effects of this technology. After all, weather is a complex process that we are still only beginning to comprehend. Perhaps we should be looking for ways to withstand- rather than eliminate - the rigors of nature. As with the field of medicine, it will be important for weather researchers to establish ethical guidelines. At what point does science begin trespassing en God's territory? That area remains as gray as the clouds in a gathering thunderstorm.