25th Anniversary of the Oakfield, Wisconsin F5 tornado

July 18th, 2021 |

An F5 tornado struck the village of Oakfield, Wisconsin late in the day on 18 July 1996 (NWS Milwaukee story). An animation of GOES-8 (GOES-East) Visible images (below) showed the development of supercell thunderstorms as they moved east-southeastward across the area. Oakfield is located just southwest of Fond du Lac (KFLD), and is denoted by the yellow ‘+’ symbol on the images. Overshooting tops were evident on these thunderstorms.

GOES-8 Visible images [click to play animation | MP4]

GOES-8 Visible images [click to play animation | MP4]

The corresponding GOES-8 Infrared Window images (below) revealed cloud-top infrared brightness temperatures as cold as -63.6ºC (darker shades of red) at 2345 UTC, which was approximately 30 minutes prior to the tornado moving through Oakfield (the GOES-8 imager instrument was actually scanning the Oakfield area at 2348 UTC).

GOES-8 Infrared images [click to play animation | MP4]

GOES-8 Infrared images [click to play animation | MP4]

On a larger-scale view of GOES-8 Water Vapor images (below), a sharp gradient of warm-to-cool brightness temperature — orange/yellow to blue enhancement, portraying the gradient of dry air to moist air — highlighted the presence of a middle-tropospheric jet streak that was moving southeastward across the state.

GOES-8 Water Vapor images [click to play animation | MP4]

GOES-8 Water Vapor images [click to play animation | MP4]

Examples of Derived Product Images from the GOES-8 Sounder can be seen here.

1984: Carolinas Tornado Outbreak

March 29th, 2021 |

NOAA’s GOES-5 VISSR view of a historical outbreak in the Carolina’s in 1984. March 28th and 29th, 1984 saw one of the most destructive tornado events in the history of North and South Carolina.

Infrared Loop:

GOES-5 Infrared imagery from 12:00 UTC to 23:30 UTC on March 28, 1984.

The coldest clouds appear as darker shades of red. A regional scale IR loop.

Visible Loop:

GOES-5 visible imagery from 12:00 UTC to 23:30 UTC on March 28, 1984.

A more zoomed-in visible loop over the same time range.

H/T Melissa Griffin for reminding us of this case:

More background on this case in 1984 was posted by the NWS Willmington office: https://www.weather.gov/ilm/CarolinasOutbreak.

A combined visible and infrared GOES-5 Full Disk image from March 28, 1984 at 21 UTC.

A larger Full Disk “sandwich” image.

NOAA GOES-5 data are via the University of Wisconsin-Madison SSEC Satellite Data Services.

Geostationary satellite views of the most rain over 72-hours in 2007

February 27th, 2021 |

The record for the most rain over a 72-hour period was in late February 2007, with 3.930m (154.72″)! This was on Reunion Island, associated with Tropical Cyclone Gamede in South Indian Ocean. The island is east of Madagascar. This island also holds the record for the most rain (4,869 mm (191.7 in)) over a 96-hour period, associated with the same event. More on this case can be found in this 2009 BAMS article.

Meteosat-8

While the view of the cyclone from EUMETSAT‘s MET-8 was on the edge of the viewing area, the infrared window loop was still impressive.

A 3-day color-enhanced infrared window loop from EUMETSAT’s Meteosat-8 geostationary imager.

A longer loops of 3 and 4 days were also generated. Which shows Tropical Cyclone Favio as well. For these images, the coldest brightness temperatures have the green/yellow/red/pink colors. A one-day loop (February 25, 2007) in both mp4 and animated gif formats.

Meteosat-7

EUMETSAT’s Meteosat-7, due to its location over the Indian Ocean, had a more direct view of these cyclones.

A 3-day color-enhanced infrared window loop from EUMETSAT’s Meteosat-7 geostationary imager.

Note that the view angle is improved over Meteosat-8, but the image frequency is reduced. A longer Meteosat-7 loop was also generated. Again, Tropical Cyclone Favio can be seen.

A loop of Meteosat-7 visible band from February 25, 2007.

Visible loops (mp4 format) from February 23 and 24 and 26, 2007. The same loops as animated gifs: February 23, 24, 25 and 26, 2007.

H/T

Thanks to @Weather_History for the post on this event.

The above satellite data are from EUMETSAT, accessed via the University of Wisconsin-Madison Space Science and Engineering Center (SSEC) Data Services. The images were generated with McIDAS-X. More on EUMETSAT’s Meteosat Third Generation will appear in the Bulletin of the AMS.

Hurricane Gilbert: 1988 as seen by GOES-7

September 14th, 2020 |

Hurricane Gilbert (1988) is one of the most intense Atlantic-basin hurricane on record. NOAA’s GOES-7 offer both visible and infrared views of the storm. These images are from the VISSR mode. What is unique about the view from the geostationary orbit, is that it allows both large / synoptic scale views as well as finer (mesoscale) views. 

Visible band

Visible

GOES-7 Visible images from September 10-17, 1988. [click to play animation | MP4]

A week-long visible loop of the Hurricane Gilbert as it moves across the Caribbean and through the Gulf of Mexico. Tropical Storm Florence can also be seen near Louisiana, early in the animation. 

Gilbert. GOES-7 Visible

GOES-7 Visible images from September 12-15, 1988. [click to play animation | MP4]

A GOES-7 visible loop over the time period of maximum intensity. 

GOES-7

GOES-7 Visible images from September 13, 1988. [click to play animation | MP4]

The highest spatial resolution visible GOES-17 imagery of Hurricane Gilbert. Note the horizontal striping due to the photo-multipler tube technology that was then used. 

Infrared window band

IR

GOES-7 IR images from September 10-18, 1988. [click to play animation | MP4]

Above is a “large-scale” view of the GOES-7 infrared longwave window band covering September 10-18, 1988. Tropical Storm Florence can also be seen near Louisiana, early in the animation. 

A more “zoomed in” view:

IR

GOES-7 IR images from September 12-14, 1988. [click to play animation | MP4]

All the IR images have been color-enhanced to highlight the coldest temperatures. 

Visible and Infrared window bands

GOES-7 Full Disk

GOES-7 combined visible and infrared full disk image from September 13, 1988. [Click to enlarge.]

A much larger file (18 MB) of the same day/time as above. This is a combined image, with the visible band, along with the cold pixels from the infrared band (color). 

Swipe between GOES-7 Visible and Infrared bands.

Fade between GOES-7 Visible and Infrared bands. (Using this software.)

NOAA GOES-7 data are via the University of Wisconsin-Madison SSEC Satellite Data Services.