GCOM-W1 AMSR2 microwave productsA series of GCOM-W1 AMSR2 swaths during the period from 2256 UTC on 28 November to 1692 UTC on 30 November 2018 (above) showed the global coverage of Total Precipitable Water and Wind Speed products from that polar-orbiting satellite. A closer look just south of the Atlantic provinces of Canada (above) showed a comparison of Total Precipitable Water, Wind Speed, Surface Rain Rate and Cloud Liquid Water products over a strong mid-latitude cyclone at 0545 UTC on 29 November (the 0532 UTC time stamp on the images denotes the beginning time of that particular satellite swath).
Surface analyses from the OPC (below) classified this low pressure system as Hurricane Force at 00 UTC and Storm Force at 06 UTC — however, AMSR2 ocean surface wind speeds were as high as 71 knots west of the surface low, 84.8 knots north of the low and 95.6 knots in the vicinity of the occluded front.Shortly after the overpass of GCOM-W1, additional views of the western portion of this storm were provided by Aqua MODIS and NOAA-20 VIIRS (below). (note: the NOAA-20 VIIRS images are incorrectly labeled as Suomi NPP) Another overpass of GCOM-W1 about 10 hours later continued to show a broad region of strong post-frontal westerly winds to the south of the storm center (below). During that period, the occluded low continued to deepen from 957 to 952 hPa (surface analyses). Additional features seen in the AMSR2 Total Precipitable Water and Wind Speed products in other parts of the world included the following: Low pressure south of Iceland (surface analyses), with an ocean surface wind speed of 76 knots (above). Low pressure off the US West Coast (surface analyses), with an ocean surface wind speed of 70 knots (above). Low pressure and a cold front northwest of Hawai’i (surface analysis), with a long fetch of tropical moisture and widespread ocean surface wind speeds of 60-70 knots (above). Low pressure southwest of Australia, with an ocean surface wind speed of 47 knots (above). Low preesure and a cold front southeast of Argentina, with TPW as high as 2.2 inches and an ocean surface wind speed of 58.6 knots (above). Low pressure over the Norwegian Sea (surface analysis), with an ocean surface wind speed of 75 knots (above). A plume of moisture and strong winds ahead of a low pressure and cold front (surface analysis) moving across the Aleutian Islands (above).
Due to the frequent overlap of polar-orbiting satellite swaths at high latitudes, some locations can have data coverage from numerous consecutive overpasses. The example below shows the Barents Sea — between 70-80º N latitude — during 7 consecutive swaths from 2256 UTC on 28 November to 0847 UTC on 29 November.