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NASA's TRMM satellite sees heavy rainfall in Tropical Storm Bud

Tropical Storm Bud is dropping heavy rainfall, and appears to be intensifying. NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite has been monitoring rainfall within the storm, and has watched it become heavier over the last day - a sign the storm is intensifying.

The TRMM satellite had an excellent view of tropical storm Bud on May 22, 2012 at 2243 UTC 6:43 p.m. EDT/2:43 p.m. PDT). TRMM's Microwave Imager (TMI) and Precipitation Radar (PR) data shows that Bud contained bands of very heavy rainfall near the center of circulation. TRMM revealed that some of these intense storms were dropping rainfall at a rate greater than 50mm/hr (~2 inches).

The TRMM satellite passed over Bud on May 22, 2012, at 6:43 p.m. EDT. This 3-D image from TRMM shows that some of the strong convective towers near Bud's center were taller than 15 km (~9.3 miles). Credit: NASA/TRMM, Hal Pierce

A 3-D image from TRMM's PR shows that some of the strong convective towers near Bud's center were taller than 15km (~9.3 miles). TRMM PR found reflectivity values of over 58.050 dBz indicating that very heavy rainfall was occurring.

On May 23, at 1500 UTC (8 a.m. PDT) Tropical Storm Bud's maximum sustained winds were near 65 mph (100 kph). It was located near latitude 13.4 North and longitude 107.6 West, about 445 miles (715 km) south-southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico. Bud is headed northwest near 9 mph (15 kph) and is expected to slow down, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC).

The NHC also forecasts that Bud will slow and turn to the north-northeast by Friday, May 25. NHC stated that Bud could become a hurricane later today (May 23) or tonight.

Rob Gutro | EurekAlert!
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