Tapah through infrared satellite eyes: Now a typhoon

Apr 29, 2014
NASA's Aqua satellite passed over Typhoon Tapah on April 29 at 03:47 UTC and saw strong thunderstorms with cold cloud-top temperatures near -63F/-52C (purple) around the center of circulation and east of the center. Credit: NASA JPL, Ed Olsen

Tropical Storm Tapah strengthened since April 28 and early on April 29, the storm reached typhoon strength. From its orbit in space, NASA's Aqua satellite zoomed over Tapah and the AIRS instrument captured infrared data on the storm that showed the location of its strongest thunderstorms.

The U.S. National Weather Service in Guam noted that a tropical storm warning and a watch continues for Alamagan and Pagan. For details on the advisory, visit: http://www.prh.noaa.gov/data/GUM/HLSPQ1

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite collected infrared data on Typhoon Tapah on April 29 at 03:47 UTC (April 28 at 11:47 p.m. EDT). A false-colored image was created at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, Calif. showing the temperature data gathered by AIRS. The data showed that there were strong with cold cloud-top temperatures near -63F/-52C around the center of Tapah's circulation and to the east of the center where bands of thunderstorms were wrapping into the center.

The Joint Typhoon Warning Center also looked at animated enhanced infrared satellite imagery and a microwave image and both showed that the convection (rising air that forms the thunderstorms that make up the tropical cyclone) had weakened slightly during the morning hours (Eastern Daylight Time/U.S.) of April 29. Both sets of data confirmed the AIRS data and also showed bands of thunderstorms remained tightly wrapped into the low level center.

Tapah reached typhoon strength today, April 29, when maximum sustained winds were near 65 knots (75 mph/120 kph). At 1500 UTC/11 a.m. EDT, Typhoon Tapah was centered near 17.6 north latitude and 147.2 east longitude, about 151 nautical miles (173.8 miles/279.7 km) northeast of Saipan. Tapah has tracked northward at 8 knots (9.2 mph/14.8 kph).

Tapah is expected to continue on a northwesterly path for a couple days until turning to the northeast around a subtropical ridge (elongated area) of high pressure. Tapah is expected to weaken and curve northeast before reaching Iwo To. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center expects Tapah to move into cooler waters and an area of increasing vertical wind shear over the next couple of days which are expected to weaken the storm quickly after a couple of days.

Explore further: Newborn Tropical Storm Tapah threatens Saipan and Tinian

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Newborn Tropical Storm Tapah threatens Saipan and Tinian

Apr 28, 2014

A tropical storm warning is in force for Saipan and Tinian as Tropical Storm Tapah moves north through the Northwestern Pacific Ocean on April 28. When NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite passed overhead and, ...

Recommended for you

Strong quake hits east Indonesia; no tsunami threat

5 hours ago

A strong earthquake struck off the coast of eastern Indonesia on Sunday evening, but there were no immediate reports of injuries or damage, and authorities said there was no threat of a tsunami.

Scientists make strides in tsunami warning since 2004

Dec 19, 2014

The 2004 tsunami led to greater global cooperation and improved techniques for detecting waves that could reach faraway shores, even though scientists still cannot predict when an earthquake will strike.

Trade winds ventilate the tropical oceans

Dec 19, 2014

Long-term observations indicate that the oxygen minimum zones in the tropical oceans have expanded in recent decades. The reason is still unknown. Now scientists at the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.