GOES-16 GLM data now available in RealEarth™

July 21st, 2017 |

GOES-16 Infrared Window (103 µm) images, with GLM Group data points plotted as white dots [click to play animation]

GOES-16 Infrared Window (10.3 µm) images, with GLM Group data points plotted as white dots [click to play animation]

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

Real-time GOES-16 Geostationary Lightning Mapper (GLM) data are now available for viewing using RealEarth™ (real-time GLM link). An example from 21 July 2017 is shown above, for an isolated thunderstorm that developed during the afternoon hours along a residual convective outflow boundary — which was evident on an animation of “Red” Visible (0.64 µm) imagery — draped across eastern Iowa. This storm produced 1.0-inch diameter hail and damaging winds within 7-22 minutes after the 2200 UTC end of the animation (SPC storm reports).  Both the GOES-16 “Clean” Infrared Window (10.3 µm) images and the GLM Group (GLM Events clustered by proximity; see this blog post) data points were available at 1-minute intervals, since the region was within the domain of one of the Mesoscale Sectors.

Note that during the early portion of the animation, a number of GLM Group points were located south of the rapidly-expanding cold cloud top shield — GLM data are parallax-corrected, assuming a cloud-top height of 12.5 km. The 18 UTC tropopause height was 15.0 km on the 18 UTC sounding at Davenport, Iowa.

GOES-16 ABI Mesoscale Sector imagery and GLM data with strong thunderstorms over Wisconsin

July 12th, 2017 |

GOES-16 ABI Band 13 (“Clean Window”) 10.3 µm Imagery, every minute from 1000 – 1359 UTC on 12 July 2017, with GLM Lightning Flash locations for each minute (yellow circles) superimposed (Click to animate)

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

Strong morning thunderstorms with a few severe weather reports, and abundant heavy rain (24-h totals ending 1200 UTC on 12 July 2017, from here), spread over the northern part of the GOES-16 default western Mesoscale Sector on the morning of 12 July 2017. The animation above shows the GOES-16 Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI) 10.3 µm imagery with Geostationary Lightning Mapper (GLM) Lightning Flash event locations superimposed, at 1-minute timescales. The top of the default Mesoscale Sector cuts through central Wisconsin.

Click here to see a graphic with the GLM Flashes for the 3 different hours.

Plotting GOES-16 GLM data in McIDAS-X

July 11th, 2017 |

GOES-16 ABI Clean Window (10.3 µm) imagery at 1002 UTC, along with GLM Lightning Observations of Events, Groups, and Flashes from 0959-1000 UTC (Yellow), 1000-1001 UTC (Green) and 1001-1002 UTC (Red). [Click to enlarge]

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

 

The GOES-16 Geostationary Lightning Mapper (GLM) has achieved Beta Maturity and is being distributed via GOES Rebroadcast (GRB). A release of McIDAS-X slated for September 2017 has a GLM display, prototyped above.  GLM data processing in the Ground System groups lightning flashes from smallest increments (Events), to aggregates of Events (Groups) to aggregates of Groups (Flashes). Thus, Events, as shown above, are on a rectangular grid wherein each gridpoint is a GLM Field of View. Groups are plotted at the centroid of the Events that comprise the Group, and Flashes are plotted as the centroid of the Groups that comprise the Flash. Typically, the number of Events is greater than the number of Groups, which is greater than the number of Flashes.

Convection developing over east-central Illinois and west-central Indiana this morning at 1002 UTC (as depicted by the 10.3 µm imagery, above) was electrically active. Events, Groups and Flashes are shown for 1-minute increments. For this particular (small) increment of time, the large convective complex over central Indiana was electrically quiet.  (Here is an animation that shows a similar scene — but with three events, groups and flashes grouped in 5-minute intervals rather than 1).

Note:  The ‘+’ sign used in the plot does not describe the electrical polarity of the flash;  GLM cannot distinguish positive from negative activity.

Hurricane Matthew and the Day/Night Band

October 2nd, 2016 |
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Day/Night Band Visible Imagery (0.70 µm) from VIIRS on Suomi NPP, 0643 UTC on 1 October (Click to enlarge)

The Day/Night Band is a component of the VIIRS Instrument on board Suomi NPP, and it allows for satellite views in the visible portion of the electromagnetic spectrum at night. The nighttime light source is the Moon (if it is above the horizon), or airglow if not (or if the Moon is new). When Suomi NPP overflew Matthew early in the morning on 1 and 2 October, shortly after the New Moon (on 30 September), only airglow was illuminating the storm. Those images are shown above (for 1 October 2016) and below (for 2 October 2016). This imagery was produced using Polar2Grid software that is part of the CSPP Package using data received at a direct broadcast site (in this case, Miami).

There are striking mesospheric airglow gravity waves evident to the east and north of the center on 1 October, at which time Matthew was a Category 5 storm on the Saffir-Simpson scale, having undergone remarkable intensification during the previous 24 hours. On October 2, the gravity waves are not quite so apparent (at this time, the storm was a Category 4 storm). Are the gravity waves a response to the strong intensification?

Lightning streaks are present to the east of the center, within the cluster of deep convection east of Matthew, in both images. City lights on the islands of the Greater Antilles, and over the South American landmass, are also apparent. Haiti is notable for its minimal signature of city lights.

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Day/Night Band Visible Imagery (0.70 µm) from VIIRS on Suomi NPP, 0624 UTC on 2 October (Click to enlarge)

Matthew is forecast to affect Jamaica, eastern Cuba and Haiti on Monday and Tuesday, 3 and 4 October. Consult the website of the National Hurricane Center for more information.

Day/Night Band imagery will be available from JPSS-1, scheduled for launch no earlier than March 2017. After its launch, both Suomi NPP and JPSS-1 will provide Day/Night Band imagery. JPSS-2, -3 and -4 (scheduled for launch in 2021, 2026 and 2031, respectively), will also have a Day/Night Band capability. There are currently no plans for a geostationary Day/Night Band capability (In particular, GOES-R does not have a Day/Night Band).

======================== Added, 3 October =======================
The Day/Night Band image from early on 3 October, below, also shows evidence of gravity waves that are perturbing the airglow, and of lightning in the convective complex well east of the center of Matthew.

Day/Night Band Visible Imagery (0.70 µm) from VIIRS on Suomi NPP, 0605 UTC on 3 October (Click to enlarge)

Shown below is the same VIIRS Day/Night Band image, as viewed using AWIPS II with data received by the Puerto Rico ground station.

Suomi NPP VIIRS Day/Night Band (0.70 µm) image [Click to enlarge]

Suomi NPP VIIRS Day/Night Band (0.70 µm) image [Click to enlarge]

======================== Added, 4 October =======================
The Day/Night Band early on 4 October continues to show gravity waves in the airglow. Note how city lights in Haiti are mostly absent in this image. This could be due to attenuation by the rain in the hurricane bands, or it could be due to infrastructure failure (or both).

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Day/Night Band Visible Imagery (0.70 µm) from VIIRS on Suomi NPP at 0550 UTC on 4 October (Click to enlarge)

======================== Added, 5 October =======================
Here is the storm-centered Day/Night Band image for 5 October (also shown below). The ragged center of Matthew is barely visible over the water north of eastern Cuba. Haiti continues to show no man-made light sources. Parts of western Dominican Republic also show no lights. In both places, thick clouds and heavy rain may be the reason.

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Day/Night Band Visible Imagery (0.70 µm) from VIIRS on Suomi NPP at 0711 UTC on 5 October (Click to enlarge)

======================== Added, 5 October =======================
The image from 6 October is here, with a different version shown below. The center of Matthew is apparent east of the island of Andros in the Bahamas. Note that city lights have returned to Port-au-Prince, Haiti (station MTPP), but they’ve vanished from several Bahama islands. In the zoomed-out version of the Day/Night Band that includes the United States, increased illumination is apparent over the western Gulf of Mexico. The Moon is starting to appear near the horizon during NPP’s overpass; increased illumination in these images should be the result in the next couple days.

Day/Night Band Visible Imagery (0.70 µm) from VIIRS on Suomi NPP at 0652 UTC on 5 October (Click to enlarge)

At 0633 UTC on 7 October, Matthew was located east of the Atlantic coast of Florida. Lightning streaks are apparent well to the east of the center. This Day/Night Band image centered over Haiti shows that electricity has been restored to most of the island.

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Day/Night Band Visible Imagery (0.70 µm) from VIIRS on Suomi NPP at 0633 UTC on 7 October (Click to enlarge)