NASA-NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite provided a thermal view of the clouds in hurricane Ophelia as it lashed Ireland. The Global Precipitation Measurement mission core satellite provided a look at the rainfall that was affecting the Emerald Isle.
The Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core observatory passed directly above Hurricane Ophelia on October 14, 2017 at 12:56 p.m. EDT (1656 UTC) when it was a powerful category three on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane wind scale with sustained winds of close to 115 mph (100 knots).
GPM’s Microwave Imager (GMI) and Dual-Frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) instruments collected data showing the locations of extremely heavy rainfall with the hurricane. GPM’s radar unveiled intense downpours in the northeastern side of Ophelia’s eye wall that were dropping rain at the extreme rate of over 8.4 inches (213 mm) per hour. GPM saw rainfall in other intense feeder bands producing rain at a rate of over 3.9 mm (100 mm) per hour.
[GPM core observatory passed directly above Hurricane Ophelia on Oct. 14 at 12:56 p.m. EDT (1656 UTC) GPM’s radar unveiled intense downpours in the northeastern side of Ophelia’s eye wall that were dropping rain at the extreme rate of over 8.4 inches (213 mm) per hour. GPM saw rainfall in other intense feeder bands producing rain at a rate of over 3.9 mm (100 mm) per hour. Credits: NASA/JAXA, Hal Pierce]
At NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, a 3-D animation revealed the height of precipitation within hurricane Ophelia. The animation was produced by combining data from GPM’s radar (DPR Ku band) with heights of cloud tops based on GOES-EAST satellite image temperatures.
The National Hurricane Center said that that the rainfall GPM observed would be affecting Ireland. Ophelia is expected to produce rainfall amounts of 2 to 3 inches (50 mm to 75 mm) with isolated totals near 4 inches (100 mm) through Tuesday across western Ireland and Scotland. Across eastern Ireland, rainfall amounts will average around 1 inch (25 mm) or less.
The 3-D animation showed storm tops in the northeastern side of Ophelia’s eye wall (bright yellow) were shown by GPM’s radar reaching heights of above 7.6 miles (12.4 km). The structure of hurricane Ophelia’s eye wall is clearly shown with this close-up virtual flyby above the center of the tropical cyclone. GPM is a joint mission between NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, JAXA.
[This 3-D animation of data from the GPM core satellite on Oct. 15 showed storm tops in the northeastern side of Ophelia’s eye wall (bright yellow) were shown by GPM’s radar reaching heights of above 7.6 miles (12.4 km). The structure of hurricane Ophelia’s eye wall is clearly shown with this close-up virtual flyby above the center of the tropical cyclone. Credit: NASA/JAXA, Hal Pierce]
NASA-NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite measured temperatures of Ophelia’s cloud tops as it passed overhead early on Oct. 16. The VIIRS instrument aboard captured a thermal image of Hurricane Ophelia over Ireland on Oct. 16 at 02:54 UTC (Oct. 15 at 10:54 p.m. EDT). Coldest cloud tops appeared northwest of the center, showing that the upper level of Ophelia was pushed from wind shear.
Edited for WeatherNation by Meteorologist Mace Michaels
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