Cyclone Harold 2020

Start Date

April 6, 2020

Overview

Tropical Cyclone Harold developed from a low pressure system that was observed to the east of Papua New Guinea, and tracked to the southeast where it peaked as a Category 5 cyclone on April 6th, 2020. The cyclone brought destructive high winds and extreme rainfall to the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji, and Tonga.

The NASA Earth Applied Sciences Program has activated to Tier 1 response for Cyclone Harold and is monitoring the situation to determine what NASA resources and capabilities may be available to support response and recovery for the event. The Disasters Program is working with stakeholders including the World Food Programme (WFP), the U.S. Department of State (DOS), and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). As of April 14th, 2020, the NASA Advanced Rapid Imaging and Analysis (ARIA) project has produced several Damage Proxy Maps (DPMs) and a Flood Proxy Map (FPM) for the affected regions and provided them to the WFP. The products have also been shared in GIS format on the NASA Disasters Mapping Portal.

On April 10, the MODIS instrument that flies aboard NASA’s Terra provided a visible image of Extra-tropical Cyclone Harold in the Southern Pacific Ocean. Credit: NASA Worldview, Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS).

On April 10, the MODIS instrument that flies aboard NASA’s Terra provided a visible image of Extra-tropical Cyclone Harold in the Southern Pacific Ocean. Credit: NASA Worldview, Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS).

Latest Updates

April 27, 2020
ARIA Damage Proxy Map (DPM) showing potentially damaged structures from Cyclone Harold in red and yellow in Luganville, the second largest city in Vanuatu,. Credit: NASA ARIA, EOS, Google, Copyright contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data 2020, process
ARIA Damage Proxy Map (DPM) showing potentially damaged structures from Cyclone Harold in red and yellow in Luganville, the second largest city in Vanuatu,. Credit: NASA ARIA, EOS, Google, Copyright contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data 2020, processed by ESA Tropical Cyclone Harold developed from a low-pressure system that was observed to the east of Papua New Guinea, and tracked to the southeast where it peaked as a Category 5 cyclone on April 6th, 2020. The cyclone brought...
April 14, 2020
Rainfall measurements of Cyclone Harold from NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement mission (GPM) satellite on April 6th, 2020. Credit: NASA
A Category 4 cyclone, the most powerful yet of 2020, made landfall on the South Pacific nation of Vanuatu on Monday, not long before this GPM overpass from April 6th, 2020 at 1:41 UTC. Tropical Cyclone Harold developed from a low pressure system that was observed to the east of Papua New Guinea last week, and has tracked to the southeast, where it has already caused flooding and loss of life in the Solomon Islands. Early reports from Vanuatu indicate heavy flooding and property damage.