Cyclone Numa in the Mediterranean Sea

November 19th, 2017 |

Terra MODIS and Suomi NPP VIIRS true-color RGB images [click to enlarge]

Terra MODIS and Suomi NPP VIIRS true-color RGB images [click to enlarge]

A toggle between Terra MODIS and Suomi NPP VIIRS Red-Green-Blue (RGB) images, viewed using RealEarth (above), revealed the well-defined eye structure of Cyclone Numa over the Ionian Sea (between Italy and Greece) on 18 November 2017. Tracing its origin back to the remnants of Tropical Storm Rina (track), Cyclone Numa had acquired subtropical characteristics, making it a relatively rare Medicane.

EUMETSAT Meteosat-10 High Resolution Visible (0.8 µm) images (below) showed the evolution of the storm on 18 November. Plots of hourly surface reports (in metric units) are plotted on the images.

Meteosat-10 Visible (0.8 µm) images, with plots of hourly surface reports [click to play MP4 animation]

Meteosat-10 Visible (0.8 µm) images, with plots of hourly surface reports [click to play MP4 animation]

Meteosat-10 Infrared Window (10.8 µm) images (below) showed cloud-top infrared brightness temperatures around -60ºC (darker red enhancement) associated with some of the convective bursts during the 18-19 November period, as the system eventually moved inland across Greece.

Meteosat-10 Infrared Window (10.8 µm) images, with plots of hourly surface reports [click to play MP4 animation]

Meteosat-10 Infrared Window (10.8 µm) images, with plots of hourly surface reports [click to play MP4 animation]


Deadly Smog in India and Pakistan

November 9th, 2017 |

Suomi NPP VIIRS Day Night Band Visible Imagery (0.70 µm) at Night, 05, 07 and 08 November 2017 (Click to enlarge).

Suomi NPP VIIRS Visible Imagery at Night (the Day Night Band Visible Image (0.7 µm) from 5 November, 7 November and 8 November), above, and Infrared Channel Brightness Temperature Difference  (11.45 µm – 3.9 µm) on 5 November, 7 November and 8 November), below, both show the presence of fog/smog over northern Pakistan and northwestern India from 05-08 November 2017 (Suomi NPP VIIRS Imagery courtesy of William Straka, CIMSS). The Smog led the Government of Punjab to ban burning of stubble; schools in Delhi were closed.  Vehicle crashes linked to reduced visibilities have killed at least 10 people (source).  Air Quality in the region is very poor as shown in this Screen Grab from this site.

Suomi NPP VIIRS Infrared channel Brightness Temperature Difference (11.45 µm – 3.9 µm) on 05, 07, and 08 November 2017 (Click to enlarge)

An animation of Meteosat-8 Visible Imagery, below, from 03-09 November, shows little improvement in conditions in the past week.

Meteosat-8 Visible Imagery (0.6 µm) at 0300 UTC from 03 to 09 November 2017 (Click to enlarge)

Daily composites of Suomi NPP VIIRS true-color Red-Green-Blue (RGB) images from RealEarth, below, showed the areal coverage of the smog during the 03-09 November period. Surface observations at New Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport indicated that the visibility remained below one statute mile — with zero visibility at times — during the 72-hour period spanning 07 November, 08 November and 09 November (animation).

Daily composites of Suomi NPP VIIRS true-color RGB images (click to enlarge)

Daily composites of Suomi NPP VIIRS true-color RGB images (click to enlarge)

Worth noting on a nighttime comparison of Suomi NPP VIIRS Infrared Brightness Difference (11.45-3.74 µm) and Day/Night Band (0.7 µm) images, below, was the appearance of a cloud shadow being cast by moonlight onto the top of the boundary layer smog/fog.

Suomi NPP VIIRS Infrared Brightness Difference (11.45-3.74 µm) and Dat/Night Band (0.7 µm) images [click to enlarge]

Suomi NPP VIIRS Infrared Brightness Difference (11.45-3.74 µm) and Day/Night Band (0.7 µm) images [click to enlarge]

Ex-hurricane Ophelia over Ireland and the United Kingdom

October 16th, 2017 |

Meteosat-10 Water Vapor (6.25 µm) images, with hourly surface wind gusts (knots) plotted in red [click to play MP4 animation]

Meteosat-10 Water Vapor (6.25 µm) images, with hourly surface wind gusts (knots) plotted in red [click to play MP4 animation]

After reaching Category 3 intensity over the eastern Atlantic Ocean on 14 October, Hurricane Ophelia (storm track) rapidly underwent transition to an extratropical storm which eventually spread high winds across much of Ireland and the United Kingdom on 16 October 2017. EUMETSAT Meteosat-10 upper-level Water Vapor (6.25 µm) (above) and lower-level Water Vapor (7.35 µm) images (below) revealed the familiar “scorpion tail” signature of a sting jet (reference). Hourly wind gusts (in knots) from primary reporting stations are plotted in red.

Meteosat-10 Water Vapor (7.35 µm) images, with hourly surface wind gusts (knots) plotted in red [click to play MP4 animation]

Meteosat-10 Water Vapor (7.35 µm) images, with hourly surface wind gusts (knots) plotted in red [click to play MP4 animation]

Two sites with notable wind gusts were Cork, Ireland (67 knots at 0930 UTC) and Valley, UK (70 knots at 1500 UT), shown below. In fact, a wind gust of 103 knots (119 mph or 191 km/hour) was reported at the Fastnet Rock Lighthouse off the southwest coast of Ireland.

Time series plot of surface data from Cork, Ireland [click to enlarge]

Time series plot of surface data from Cork, Ireland [click to enlarge]

Time series plot of surface data from Valley, United Kingdom [click to enlarge]

Time series plot of surface data from Valley, United Kingdom [click to enlarge]

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Terra and Aqua MODIS true-color images [click to enlarge]

Terra and Aqua MODIS true-color images [click to enlarge]

In a toggle between Terra MODIS (overpass time around 1159 UTC) and Aqua MODIS (overpass time around 1345 UTC) true-color Red-Green-Blue (RGB) imagery (above), a somewhat hazy appearance was seen over the Irish Sea on the Terra MODIS image. This was due to an airborne plume of sand from the Sahara Desert (UK Met Office story).

In fact, blowing sand was observed about 3 hours later at Isle of Man, from 1520-1620 UTC — during that time period their surface winds gusted to 68 knots (78 mph), and surface visibility was reduced to 2.2 miles (below).

Time series plot of surface data from Isle of Man [click to enlarge]

Time series plot of surface data from Isle of Man [click to enlarge]

Hurricane Irma in the eastern Atlantic Ocean

September 1st, 2017 |
Suomi NPP VIIRS Infrared Window (11.45 µm) and Day/Night Band (0.7 µm) images (Click to enlarge)

Suomi NPP VIIRS Infrared Window (11.45 µm) and Day/Night Band (0.7 µm) images (Click to enlarge)

A toggle between nighttime images of Suomi NPP VIIRS Infrared Window (11.45 µm) and Day/Night Band (0.7 µm) data at 0347 UTC (courtesy of William Straka, SSEC/CIMSS) showed a high-resolution view of the eye of Category 3 Hurricane Irma.

 

Toggle of CIMSS True Color, GOES-16 Split Window Difference (10.3 µm – 12.3 µm) field, and GOES-16 Dust RGB Product, 1315 UTC on 1 September 2017 (Click to enlarge)

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

The animation above cycles through imagery from 1315 UTC on 1 September, showing CIMSS GOES-16 True Color Imagery, The GOES-16 Split Window Difference (10.3 µm – 12.3 µm), and the GOES-16 Dust RGB (Red-Green-Blue) Product. The Split Window Difference field highlights moist air (bright red in the enhancement) to the south of Irma, and also dryer air (blue in the color enhancement), to the north. The Saharan Air Analysis, below, from the CIMSS Tropical Weather Website, corroborates the placement of the dry air to the north of Irma, and Total Precipitable Water estimates (from here) also show dry air. This dry air could influence further strengthening of the storm in the short term.

Saharan Air Layer analysis on 01 September 2017 (Click to animate)

Irma is near the eastern edge of the GLM Domain for GOES-16 in the central Test position at 89.5 W Longitude; the animation below, with GLM Group information (every 10 minutes) over ABI Band 13 (10.3 µm, every 30 minutes from the Full Disk Domain), shows little lightning near the center of Irma on 30/31 August. Lightning was more active on 1 September.

GOES-16 ABI “Clean Window” 10.3 µm Infrared Imagery, every half hour, with GLM Group Data plotted in 10-minute increments from 0000 UTC on 30 September through 1200 UTC on 1 September 2017 (Click to animate)

Satellite trends with Irma show the development of an eye structure, as seen below in the screen capture from the GOES-13 Floater (source) at 1745 UTC, and DMSP-16 SSMIS Microwave (85 GHz) at 1829 UTC on 1 September.

GOES-13 10.7 µm Infrared Imagery, 1745 UTC, 1 September 2017 (Click to enlarge)

The evolution of the eye is also apparent in the GOES-16 Visible Imagery (0.64 µm), below, from 1315-1815 UTC on 1 September 2017.

GOES-16 Visible (0.64 µm) Imagery, 1315-1815 UTC, 1 September 2017 (Click to animate)

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