NASA analyzes Tropical Storm Ula's winds

January 7, 2016 by Rob Gutro
This image from NOAA's GOES-West satellite on Jan. 7, 2016 at 1200 UTC (7 a.m. EST) shows Tropical Storm Ula in the South Pacific Ocean west-southwest of Fiji. Credit: NASA/NOAA GOES Project

Tropical Storm Ula continued to weaken as it pulled farther away from Fiji in the Southern Pacific Ocean. NASA's RapidScat instrument found that the strongest winds in the storm were south of the center. NOAA's GOES-West satellite captured an infrared image of the storm that showed stronger thunderstorms had recently developed around its center.

On Jan. 7, 2016 NASA's RapidScat instrument measured in Tropical Storm Ula and saw the strongest sustained winds near 29 meters per second//64.4 mph/104.4 kph south of the center. Maximum sustained winds are not always equally distributed in a hurricane or tropical , winds in the other quadrants were not as strong. RapidScat instrument helps forecasters find the strongest quadrants of a storm. RapidScat is an instrument that flies aboard the International Space Station.

NOAA's GOES-West satellite captured an of Tropical Storm Ula at 1200 UTC (7 a.m. EST) on Jan. 7, 2016. The infrared image showed that stronger thunderstorms redeveloped in the center of circulation as wind shear relaxed and the storm moved over warmer sea surface temperatures.

At 0900 UTC (4 a.m. EST) on Jan. 6, 2016 Ula's maximum sustained winds had dropped to 45 knots (51 mph/83 kph). Ula continues to track to the northwest at 4 knots (4.6 mph/7.4 kph) and into increasing vertical wind shear, which is expected to keep weakening the storm. Ula was centered near 19.0 degrees south latitude and 175.0 degrees east longitude, about 201 nautical miles (231.3 miles/372.3 km) west-southwest of Suva, Fiji.

On Jan. 7, 2016 NASA's RapidScat instrument measured surface winds in Tropical Storm Ula and saw the strongest sustained winds near 29 meters per second//64.4 mph/104.4 kph south of the center. Credit: NASA JPL/Doug Tyler

The Joint Typhoon Warning Center forecast calls for Ula move toward the northwest and re-strengthen for a day or two before the storm turns to the southwest where it will run into increasing and move back over cooler waters. Both of those factors are expected to weaken the storm and lead to dissipation by Jan. 10, 2016.

Explore further: Tropical Storm Ula weakens, moves south

Related Stories

Tropical Storm Ula weakens, moves south

January 5, 2016

Former hurricane Ula has weakened to a tropical storm in the Southern Pacific Ocean. NOAA's GOES-West satellite captured an infrared image of the storm on Jan. 5 that showed it moved further south of Fiji.

NASA sees Tropical Cyclone Ula weakening

January 6, 2016

Tropical Cyclone Ula continued to move west, passing south of Fiji when NASA's Aqua satellite passed overhead and captured an image of the weakening storm.

NASA sees Tropical Cyclone Ula's eye and rainfall

January 1, 2016

Tropical Cyclone Ula formed on Dec. 30 and continued tracking south of Pago Pago as NASA observed rainfall rates and saw an eye form the next day. Warnings were in effect in Fiji as Ula approaches.

Recommended for you

Scientists examine bacterium found 1,000 feet underground

December 8, 2016

Pioneering work being carried out in a cave in New Mexico by researchers at McMaster University and The University of Akron, Ohio, is changing the understanding of how antibiotic resistance may have emerged and how doctors ...

0 comments

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.