NASA sees Tropical Storm Hagupit as Micronesia posts warnings
NASA's Aqua satellite captured a visible picture of Tropical Storm Hagupit in the western North Pacific Ocean on December 2, when several warnings were in effect for islands in Micronesia.
Micronesia warnings include a Typhoon Warning for Woleai, Yap and Ngulu in Yap state, a Typhoon Watch posted for Faraulep, Fais and Ulithi in Yap state, and a Tropical Storm Warning for Faraulep in Yap state.
When NASA's Aqua satellite passed over Hagupit on Dec. 2 at 03:45 UTC (Dec. 1 at 10:45 p.m. EST) the MODIS instrument took a visible picture of the storm that showed it had become much better organized over the previous day. Powerful, high thunderstorms circled the center while bands of thunderstorms spiral in from the west, south and north.
At 1500 UTC (10 a.m. EST) on Dec. 2, Hagupit had become a Category One typhoon on the Saffir-Simpson wind scale with maximum sustained winds near 70 knots (80.5 mph/129.6 kph). Hagupit was centered near 6.2 north longitude and 142.7 east latitude, about 463 nautical miles (532.8 miles/857.5 km) south of Andersen Air Force Base, Guam. It was moving to the west at 17 knots (19.5 mph/31.8 kph) and generating high seas with waves up to 25 feet (7.6 meters).
Forecasters at the Joint Typhoon Warning Center forecast Hagupit to continue moving west-northwest through Micronesia and to intensify to 130 knots before weakening. The forecast track takes the center of Hagupit between Palau and Yap on Dec. 3 and toward the Philippines thereafter.
Weakening is not expected to begin until Dec. 6 so Hagupit is expected to maintain typhoon status through December 7.