Hurricane Maria moves across Dominica

September 19th, 2017 |

GOES-16 “Clean Window” Infrared 10.3 µm imagery, 0055 to 0414 UTC on 19 September 2017 (Click to play 161 M animated gif)

GOES-16 data posted on this page are preliminary, non-operational and are undergoing testing

GOES-16 ABI 10.3 µm Infrared Imagery shows the path of Category 5 Hurricane Maria’s transit across the Caribbean Island of Dominica. The compact eye moved from east-central Dominica to the northwest coast of Dominica over the course of about 2 hours late on the 18th and early on the 19th of September 2017.

===================== Added, 2130 UTC on 19 September 2017 =====================

Later in the day on 19 September, Suomi NPP overflew Category 5 Hurricane Maria. The toggle below shows the Visible (0.64 µm) and Infrared Window (11.45 µm) imagery zoomed in over the eye. A Caribbean Basin-wide view (visible and infrared toggle) is below that. The storm displays excellent structure with strong banding and outflow and little indication of shear.  (Suomi NPP Imagery courtesy William Straka, CIMSS)

Suomi NPP Visible (0.64 µm) and Infrared (11.45 µm) imagery over the eye of Hurricane Maria, 1742 UTC on 19 September 2017 (Click to enlarge)

Suomi NPP Visible (0.64 µm) and Infrared (11.45 µm) imagery of Hurricane Maria over the eastern Caribbean, 1742 UTC on 19 September 2017 (Click to enlarge)

For more on the Hurricane Maria, consult the webpages of the National Hurricane Center or the CIMSS Tropical Weather Website.

Rapid Intensification of Hurricane Maria just to the east of the Leeward Islands

September 18th, 2017 |

GOES-16 “Clean Window” Infrared 10.3 µm imagery, 1600-2017 UTC on 18 September 2017 (Click to animate). Note: The Label states GOES-17 in error, and the time annotation becomes stuck for a time.

GOES-16 data posted on this page are preliminary, non-operational and are undergoing testing

Hurricane Maria underwent rapid intensification on 18 September as it moved through very warm waters to the east of the Leeward Islands. The animation of GOES-16 “Clean Window” Infrared Imagery (10.3 µm), above, shows the rapid development of a warm concentric eye between 1640 and 1940 UTC. The toggle below, between 1600 UTC and 2000 UTC, testifies to a great increase in organization and strength. Click here for an mp4 animation from 1400 UTC to 2100 UTC on 18 September showing the intensification in the Visible (0.64 µm) channel from ABI.

GOES-16 “Clean Window” Infrared 10.3 µm imagery, 1600 and 2017 UTC on 18 September 2017 (Click to enlarge). Note: The Label states GOES-17 in error.

The storm is in an environment of very low shear (below) and moving towards warm water that is quite deep as depicted by large values of Oceanic Heat Content (bottom). (Maps found at this site).

850-250 hPa wind shear, 1800 UTC on 18 September 2017 (Click to enlarge)

Oceanic Heat Content analysis, 1800 UTC on 18 September 2017. (Click to enlarge). Note the relative cool wake north of the Leeward Islands left behind by Hurricane Irma.

Geostationary Lightning Mapper (GLM) data over Maria for the two hours ending 2045 UTC on 18 September (from this site; click here for infrared imagery), shows lightning within the southern eyewall of the storm.

GLM Group Observations in 3-minute intervals plotted on top of GOES-16 Visible (0.64 µm) Imagery, 1830-2045 UTC on 18 September 2017 (Click to enlarge)

For more information on this dangerous storm, refer to the webpages of the National Hurricane Center, or to the CIMSS Tropical Weather website. People in the Leeward Islands in particular should pay close attention to this storm.

GOES-16 views Thunderstorms in northern Minnesota

September 15th, 2017 |

GOES-16 (left) and GOES-13 (right) views of thunderstorms over northern Minnesota. Top: Visible (0.64 µm) ; bottom (10.3 µm , left; 10.7 µm , right), 2000 UTC – 2350 UTC on 14 September (Click to animate)

GOES-16 data posted on this page are preliminary, non-operational and are undergoing testing

GOES-16 and GOES-13 animations of thunderstorms over northern Minnesota, above, courtesy Science and Operations Officer (SOO) Dan Miller from the Duluth National Weather Service Office, show how the superior spatial and temporal resolution of GOES-16 enhances the ability to monitor the evolution of storms. Not only are the individual cold overshooting tops much more apparent in the nominal 2-km resolution Infrared imagery of GOES-16 (lower left) (vs. 4-km for GOES-13 in the lower right), but their evolution is better captured by the 5-minute temporal cadence for GOES-16 (vs. 15-minute for GOES-13).

Visible (0.64 µm) imagery from GOES-16 (upper left) also has better spatial (nominally 0.5 km) resolution than GOES-13 (upper right, nominally 1 km). Note that the black points at the start of the animation in GOES-16 are regions of very high reflectivity that — for now — are incorrectly set to missing in AWIPS. Consider, for example, the visible signatures of the overshooting tops in GOES-13: are you certain you are tracking the same feature with the 15-minute time step? GOES-16 data show that overshoots can emerge and decay much more quickly than every 15 minutes!

Irma over Florida as seen by Suomi NPP and GOES-16

September 11th, 2017 |

Suomi NPP VIIRS Infrared 10.8 µm imagery, 0709 UTC on 11 September 2017 (Click to enlarge)

Suomi NPP overflew Florida and Hurricane Irma shortly after 0700 UTC on Monday 11 September. The 10.8 µm Infrared Image from the VIIRS Instrument, above, shows cold cloud tops and strong convection over much of central Florida (Orlando International Airport received 3″ of rain between 0300 and 0600 UTC on 11 September — time series plot of surface data).  The center of Irma at this time was about 55 miles northeast of Tampa.

Suomi NPP includes a Day/Night Band on the VIIRS Instrument, allowing night-time visible imagery that is illuminated by the Moon.  The Day/Night Band Near Constant Contrast product from the same time as the infrared image above, but zoomed out, is shown below. In addition to the cloud structures, this band can help identify power outages. Tampa and Miami city lights are still visible. Key West is dark. A zoomed-in view of Key West (here) shows very little illumination.

Suomi NPP Day/Night Band Image over the southeast United States showing Hurricane Irma over Florida, 0710 UTC on 11 September 2017 (Click to enlarge)

In addition, GOES-16 “Clean” Infrared Window (10.3 µm) images with surface wind gusts (in knots) are shown below during the night and the following day into the evening on 11 September 2017, as Irma was eventually downgraded to a Tropical Storm and then a Tropical Depression (NHC Discussions) as it moved northward across the Florida peninsula and into southern Georgia and South Carolina.

GOES-16 data posted on this page are preliminary, non-operational and are undergoing testing

GOES-16

GOES-16 “Clean” Infrared Window (10.3 µm) images, with surface wind gusts in knots (Click to animate)

GOES-16 Water Vapor animations, below, show the evolution of the Hurricane as it transitions to an extratropical cyclone. At the start of the animations, near 0400 UTC on 11 September, the convection in the center of the hurricane is apparent between Tampa and Cape Canaveral. That central convection diminishes with time as it moves northeast and as the extratropical transition continues.

GOES-16 Mid-level Water Vapor (6.95 µm), 0442-1702 UTC on 11 September 2017 (Click to animate)

GOES-16 Upper-level Water Vapor (6.19 µm), 0427-1647 UTC on 11 September 2017 (Click to animate)