Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

NASA-JAXA's New Precipitation Satellite Sees First Atlantic Hurricane

09.07.2014

The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Core Observatory flew over Hurricane Arthur five times between July 1 and July 5, 2014. Arthur is the first tropical cyclone of the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season.


Animation of NASA-JAXA's GPM satellite data of rain rates and internal structure of Hurricane Arthur on July 3 2014.

Image Credit: NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio/JAXA

GPM is a joint mission between NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. The Core Observatory was launched Feb. 27 from Japan and began its prime mission on May 29, just in time for the hurricane season.

The five GPM passes over Arthur are the first time a precipitation-measuring satellite has been able to follow a hurricane through its full life cycle with high-resolution measurements of rain and ice. In the July 3 image, Arthur was just off the coast of South Carolina. GPM data showed that the hurricane was asymmetrical, with spiral arms, called rain bands, on the eastern side of the storm but not on the western side.

Arthur was born as the first 2014 Atlantic tropical depression on June 30. It strengthened into a tropical storm on July 1 and reached maximum intensity as a Category 2 hurricane on July 4. The storm moved up the U.S. East Coast and made landfall on July 3 at 11:15 p.m. EDT over the Shackleford Banks between Cape Lookout and Beaufort, North Carolina, before swinging northeast over the ocean toward Greenland, where it became an extra-tropical storm on July 5.

“With these new observations we are able to see fine scale structures of precipitation to about 1,000 feet vertically and 3 miles horizontally. This allows us to measure precipitation regionally and to improve weather forecasting models,” said Gail Skofronick-Jackson, GPM project scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt Maryland.

The GPM Core Observatory’s observations of storms like Arthur will also help scientists decipher some of the thorniest questions about hurricanes, such as how and why they intensify. Hurricane intensity is one of the most difficult aspects to predict and is an area of active research that GPM's observations will contribute to, said NASA Goddard hurricane researcher Scott Braun.

The spacecraft carries two instruments that show the location and intensity of the rain, which defines a crucial part of the storm structure. The GPM Microwave Imager sees through the tops of clouds to observe how much and where precipitation occurs, and the Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar observes precise details of precipitation in three dimensions.

With the added capability and higher resolution on the new instruments, "hurricane features pop out more. They're sharper, there's more clarity to the structures," said Braun. "Being able to see the structures more clearly may allow for better determination of the structure of the eye wall and rainbands, thereby providing clues about the likelihood of a storm intensifying or weakening.”

For forecasters, GPM's radiometer and radar data are part of the toolbox of satellite data that they use to monitor tropical cyclones and hurricanes. This toolbox includes data from other low Earth orbit and geostationary satellites.

"The whole idea here is to use these tools to understand the initial genesis of the tropical cyclone, then to monitor its location, eye structure and intensity as it evolves, and to use that along with our numerical model forecast to generate a five- to seven-day forecast every six hours," said Jeff Hawkins, head of the Satellite Meteorological Applications Section for the Naval Research Laboratory in Monterey, California. His group is an early adopter of GPM data and monitors near-real time tropical cyclones worldwide. They distribute satellite products generated from multiple satellites' data to operational and research users, including the Navy and Air Force's Joint Typhoon Warning Center in Hawaii and the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Florida.

The addition of GPM data to the current suite of satellite data is timely. Its predecessor precipitation satellite, the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission, is in the17th year of its operation. GPM's new high-resolution microwave imager data and the unique radar data ensure that forecasters and modelers won't have a gap in coverage.

All GPM data products will be released to the public by Sept. 2, 2014. Current and future data sets are available to registered users from NASA Goddard's Precipitation Processing Center website at: http://pps.gsfc.nasa.gov/

Related links:

GPM Mission - http://www.nasa.gov/gpm
Hurricane Arthur Updates - http://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/arthur-atlantic/
Naval Research Laboratory Tropical Cyclones Page:  http://www.nrlmry.navy.mil/TC.html
SVS link to the animation - http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/goto?4186

Ellen Gray
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

Rob Gutro | Eurek Alert!
Further information:
http://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/nasa-jaxas-new-precipitation-satellite-sees-first-atlantic-hurricane/

Further reports about: Atlantic Flight GPM Hurricane NASA Observatory Space cyclones observations tropical

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Comparing Climate Models to Real World Shows Differences in Precipitation Intensity
17.04.2015 | Department of Energy, Office of Science

nachricht GPM sees wind shear affecting remnants of Extra-tropical Cyclone Joalane
16.04.2015 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Astronomers reveal supermassive black hole's intense magnetic field

Astronomers from Chalmers University of Technology have used the giant telescope Alma to reveal an extremely powerful magnetic field very close to a supermassive black hole in a distant galaxy

Astronomers from Chalmers University of Technology have used the giant telescope Alma to reveal an extremely powerful magnetic field very close to a...

Im Focus: A “pin ball machine” for atoms and photons

A team of physicists from MPQ, Caltech, and ICFO proposes the combination of nano-photonics with ultracold atoms for simulating quantum many-body systems and creating new states of matter.

Ultracold atoms in the so-called optical lattices, that are generated by crosswise superposition of laser beams, have been proven to be one of the most...

Im Focus: UV light robot to clean hospital rooms could help stop spread of 'superbugs'

Can a robot clean a hospital room just as well as a person?

According to new research out of the Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine, that is indeed the case. Chetan Jinadatha, M.D., M.P.H., assistant...

Im Focus: Graphene pushes the speed limit of light-to-electricity conversion

Researchers from ICFO, MIT and UC Riverside have been able to develop a graphene-based photodetector capable of converting absorbed light into an electrical voltage at ultrafast timescales

The efficient conversion of light into electricity plays a crucial role in many technologies, ranging from cameras to solar cells.

Im Focus: Study shows novel pattern of electrical charge movement through DNA

Electrical charges not only move through wires, they also travel along lengths of DNA, the molecule of life. The property is known as charge transport.

In a new study appearing in the journal Nature Chemistry, authors, Limin Xiang, Julio Palma, Christopher Bruot and others at Arizona State University's...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

HHL's Entrepreneurship Conference on FinTech

13.04.2015 | Event News

World Conference On Regenerative Medicine 2015: Registration And Abstract Submission Now Open

25.03.2015 | Event News

University presidents from all over the world meet in Hamburg

19.03.2015 | Event News

 
Latest News

Engineer Improves Rechargeable Batteries with MoS2 Nano 'Sandwich'

17.04.2015 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Comparing Climate Models to Real World Shows Differences in Precipitation Intensity

17.04.2015 | Earth Sciences

A blueprint for clearing the skies of space debris

17.04.2015 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>