NASA sees Cyclone Giovanna moving through the Mozambique Channel
Infrared NASA satellite imagery showed Cyclone Giovanna moving south through the Mozambique Channel on Thursday, February 16, 2012. Infrared data showed that Giovanna was regaining strength in the warm waters of the Channel, and the strongest thunderstorms were west of the storm's center.
NASA's Aqua satellite passed over Tropical Storm Giovanna on February 16 at 11:23 UTC (6:23 a.m. EST) as it was moving south in the Mozambique Channel. Thunderstorms west of the center still appeared strong, and had high cloud tops. Cloud top temperatures were high enough to reach the -63F/-52.7C threshold, indicating powerful storms. Those strong thunderstorms appeared to be mostly over water and not affecting southwestern Madagascar although Giovanna appeared to be hugging the coastline.
On Thursday, February 16, 2012 at 0000 UTC (Feb. 7 p.m. EST) Giovanna's maximum sustained winds had increased to 50 knots. Giovanna was centered about 450 nautical miles east of Maputo, Mozambique near 24.5 South and 40.7 East. It was moving south-southwest at 4 knots.
Giovanna is moving along the western edge of a ridge (elongated area) of high pressure located to the storm's east. Giovanna is expected to move slowly to the west and cross the Mozambique Channel. Over the next day as Giovanna is crossing the channel toward Mozambique wind shear is expected to increase, according to forecasters at the Joint Typhoon Warning Center, and that will again weaken the storm. Interests along coastal Mozambique should monitor the progress of Cyclone Giovanna.