NASA sees Depression Nine become Gaston then back to a depression

Sep 02, 2010
AIRS infrared image taken Sept. 2 at 0423 UTC (12:23 a.m. EDT) showed that Tropical Depression Gaston seemed to have a compact circulation with some high, cold thunderstorm cloud tops (purple) around its center of circulation. Those clouds reached so high into the troposphere that they were colder than -63 degrees Fahrenheit. It later weakened as it encountered dry, stable air. Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen

Tropical Depression Nine strengthened yesterday into Tropical Storm Gaston, but today it ran into dry and stable air and weakened back into a depression again.

When NASA's Aqua satellite flew over Gaston early this morning, Sept. 2 at 0423 UTC (12:23 a.m. EDT), the infrared image taken from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument showed that Tropical Depression Gaston seemed to have a compact circulation with some high, cold thunderstorm cloud tops around its center of circulation. Those clouds reached so high into the troposphere that they were colder than -63 degrees Fahrenheit. Later this morning, Gaston encountered some stable and drier air, weakening it back to a tropical depression.

Visible and late this morning showed deep convection (rapidly rising air that forms thunderstorms that power the cyclone) had decreased considerably since the AIRS image was captured, and convection and is limited to a broken band over the western and northern part of the circulation.

At 11 a.m. EDT today, Gaston's were near 35 mph, although some re- strengthening is possible as it moves into a better environment. The center of Gaston was about 970 miles west of the southernmost Cape Verde Islands, or about 1500 miles east of the Lesser Antilles near latitude 14.0 north and longitude 38.9 west. The depression is moving toward the west-northwest near 7 mph and should continue in that direction for the next couple of days. Estimated minimum central pressure is 1008 millibars.

Even though Gaston is in an area of warm waters and upper level winds that will allow it to develop, the dry and stable air is keeping it weak, so re-strengthening is likely to be a slow process. For now, it is no threat to land.

Explore further: Tropical Storm Genevieve forms in Eastern Pacific

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Tropical Storm Genevieve forms in Eastern Pacific

11 hours ago

The seventh tropical depression of the Eastern Pacific Ocean formed and quickly ramped up to a tropical storm named "Genevieve." NOAA's GOES-West satellite captured an infrared image of the newborn storm ...

NASA maps Typhoon Matmo's Taiwan deluge

14 hours ago

When Typhoon Matmo crossed over the island nation of Taiwan it left tremendous amounts of rainfall in its wake. NASA used data from the TRMM satellite to calculate just how much rain fell over the nation.

User comments : 0