In a wink, the TRMM satellite sees Gelane's smaller eye

February 18, 2010
TRMM noticed Gelane's eye was much smaller than how it appeared on February 16 at about only 10 nautical miles in diameter. Heaviest rainfall is in the southwest quadrant of the eye, where rain rates were as high as 2 inches per hour (red). Credit: NASA/SSAI, Hal Pierce

The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission or TRMM satellite noticed that Tropical Cyclone Gelane's eye is smaller than it was a couple of days ago. TRMM passed over tropical cyclone Gelane in the Southern Indian Ocean early on February 18 and noticed the decrease in size.

TRMM caught Gelane at 09:34 UTC (4:34 a.m. ET). This time the TRMM satellite passed over during the daytime so a visible image from TRMM's VIRS instrument was also used to create a composite satellite image for the TRMM precipitation analysis. TRMM images are created at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. and TRMM is managed by NASA and the Japanese Space Agency, JAXA.

TRMM noticed that Gelane's eye was much smaller than how it appeared in the February 16 image. The eye is now about only 10 nautical miles in diameter. noticed that the heaviest rainfall now appears in the southwest quadrant of the eye, where rain rates were as high as 2 inches per hour.

At 10 a.m. ET (15:00 UTC) today, February 18, Gelane's were near 95 knots with higher gusts. It was about 400 nautical miles northeast of La Reunion Island, near 15.5 South and 62.2 East. It was moving at a slow 5 mph (4 knot) crawl in a south-southeasterly direction.

Gelane is now in an area of moderate vertical wind shear, but is still expected to strengthen a little more before the winds and cooler waters in its path start affecting the storm's strength. The storm is forecast to continue moving south and then south-southeast.

Explore further: NASA's TRMM sees Depression 10P strengthen into Tropical Storm Nisha

Related Stories

2 NASA satellites see Edzani power up in clouds and rainfall

January 7, 2010

The latest satellite imagery from NASA's Aqua and Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellites have provided forecasters with signs in clouds and rainfall that Edzani is strengthening in the Southern Indian Ocean. Edzani ...

TRMM satellite doesn't need 3-D glasses for Magda

January 22, 2010

People may need 3-D glasses to see life-like images, but rainfall and cloud data from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission or TRMM satellite gives scientists a three-dimensional look at tropical cyclones without the glasses.

Cyclone Anja hits wind shear, weakens drastically

November 17, 2009

This morning, Cyclone Anja was a powerful Category 4 cyclone on the Saffir-Simpson scale. Wind shear has now giving Anja a strong "punch in the gut" as the storm has weakened to a Category 1 cyclone.

Recommended for you

Scientists solve mystery of unexplained 'bright nights'

June 21, 2017

Dating back to the first century, scientists, philosophers and reporters have noted the occasional occurrence of "bright nights," when an unexplained glow in the night sky lets observers see distant mountains, read a newspaper ...

New research leverages big data to predict severe weather

June 21, 2017

Every year, severe weather endangers millions of people and causes billions of dollars in damage worldwide. But new research from Penn State's College of Information Sciences and Technology (IST) and AccuWeather has found ...

Measuring biological dust in the wind

June 21, 2017

In the popular children's story "Horton Hears a Who!" author Dr. Seuss tells of a gentle and protective elephant who stumbles upon a speck of dust that harbors a community of microscopic creatures called the Whos living the ...

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.