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Typhoon Sanvu had a bad weekend

Typhoon Sanvu had a bad weekend. It went from Typhoon status on May 25 to an extra-tropical storm and finally into a remnant low pressure area by May 29, 2012.

NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of Typhoon Sanvu on May 25 at 1559 UTC (11:59 a.m. EDT) when Sanvu was around its peak. The image clearly showed a visible eye surrounded by strong thunderstorms with high, cold cloud top temperatures.

This visible image of Typhoon Sanvu was taken from the MODIS instrument onboard NASA's Terra satellite on May 26, 2012, at 0130 UTC (May 25 at 9:30 p.m. U.S./EDT). By this time Sanvu had weakened and its eye was no longer visible. Credit: Credit: NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team

Those cloud-top temperatures were colder than -63 Fahrenheit (-52 Celsius) indicating they were high in the troposphere. Those strong storms were generating rainfall rates of more than 1 inch (25.4 mm) per hour.

A visible image of Typhoon Sanvu was taken from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument onboard NASA's Terra satellite on May 26, 2012 at 0130 UTC (May 25 at 9:30 p.m. U.S./EDT). By that time Sanvu had weakened as it moved into cooler sea surface temperatures and its eye was no longer visible.

Sanvu ran into much cooler ocean temperatures and wind shear that quickly weakened it over the May 27-28 weekend. On May 27, Tropical Storm Sanvu passed Chichi Jima and entered the open waters of the Pacific. At 5 a.m. EDT on May 27, Sanvu was about 245 miles east of Chichi Jima island, Japan and moving east-northeast at 15 knots (17.2 mph/27.8 kph).

Wind shear was pushing most of the rainfall to the northeast of the center and weakening the storm, as was seen in a satellite image from NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite. It was on May 27, that the final warning on Sanvu was issued the Joint Typhoon Warning Center.

Rob Gutro | EurekAlert!
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