2018 News and Updates

September 14, 2018
Figure 1.  Weekly total rainfall (inches), valid 11-18 September 2018, from the National Weather Service Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS) product.  Four counties are denoted, for which soil moisture histogram animations are shown later in thi
  UPDATE 9/18/18: Soil moisture transformation from dry (brown/orange) to near saturation (purple/blue) over North Carolina associated with flooding rainfall from Hurricane #Florence (SPoRT-LIS product incorporating #MRMS precipitation). @NASA_LIS pic.twitter.com/SRgPnz5nL6 — NASA SPoRT (@NASA_SPoRT) September 18, 2018 As anticipated, Hurricane Florence resulting in monumental rainfall totals, particularly across southern and eastern North Carolina.  This past week’s rainfall totals are depicted in Figure 1, derived from the NOAA/National Weather Service Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS).  Widespread totals exceeded 10” across most of southern/eastern North Carolina and far eastern South Carolina, with maximum rainfall of more than 20” along and within a few counties of the Atlantic Coast.

 

September 14, 2018
This image, taken at 1:35 pm local time on Tuesday, September 11, 2018 by the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) onboard NASA's Aqua satellite shows Hurricane Florence whose strong winds are expected to reach the Carolina coast late Thursday. Florence in
The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder, AIRS, is a facility instrument whose goal is to support climate research and improve weather forecasting. Launched into Earth orbit on May 4, 2002 aboard NASA's Aqua satellite, AIRS moves climate research and weather prediction into the 21st century. AIRS is one of six instruments onboard Aqua, which is part of NASA's Earth Observing System of satellites.  This image, taken at 1:35 pm local time on Tuesday, September 11, 2018 by the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) onboard NASA's Aqua satellite shows Hurricane Florence whose strong winds are expected to reach the Carolina coast late Thursday. Florence intensified from a Category 2 to a Category 4 storm in a matter of hours. As of Tuesday evening, Florence had maximum sustained winds of 140 mph (225 kph). All eyes were on Hurricane Florence Wednesday as the Category 3 storm barreled toward the U.S. East Coast. NASA's Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument was watching, too, and captured new imagery of the storm's approach.

 

September 14, 2018
GPM Core Observatory overpass of Hurricane Florence from 9/14/18 at 18:36 UTC. Ground track shows rain rates (mm/hr) from the GPM Microwave Imager (GMI) instrument, 3D swath shows rain rates in the atmospheric column from the Dual-frequency Precipitation
The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission is an international network of satellites that provide the next-generation global observations of rain and snow. Building upon the success of the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), the GPM concept centers on the deployment of a “Core” satellite carrying an advanced radar / radiometer system to measure precipitation from space and serve as a reference standard to unify precipitation measurements from a constellation of research and operational satellites. Through improved measurements of precipitation globally, the GPM mission is helping to advance our understanding of Earth's water and energy cycle, improve forecasting of extreme events that cause natural hazards and disasters, and extend current capabilities in using accurate and timely information of precipitation to directly benefit society. GPM, initiated by NASAand the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) as a global successor to TRMM, comprises a consortium of international space agencies, including the Centre National d’Études Spatiales (CNES), the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration(NOAA), the European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT), and others. GPM Core Observatory overpass of Hurricane Florence from 9/14/18 at 18:36 UTC. Ground track shows rain rates (mm/hr) from the GPM Microwave Imager (GMI) instrument, 3D swath shows rain rates in the atmospheric column from the Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR).

 

September 14, 2018
Photograph of Hurricane Florence as seen from the International Space Station on 9/12/2018 at ~600 miles from Southeast U.S. coastline.
Photograph of Hurricane Florence as seen from the International Space Station on 9/12/2018 at ~600 miles from Southeast U.S. coastline. Astronauts onboard the International Space Station are using digital cameras to take images of Hurricane Florence as they pass over it, capturing panoramic views of the storm’s eye and cloud bands.  Once the storm has passed and cloud cover lessens, requests to document flooding, changes to the land surface, etc. will be sent to the crew as part of ongoing NASA ISS response to the International Disaster Charter activation for Hurricane Florence. Imagery of this type is then georeferenced by the Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit at JSC. 

 

September 14, 2018
 AMSR-2 / GCOM-1 Surface Precipitation Rates from Hurricane Florence obtained 9/14/18
 AMSR-2 / GCOM-1 Surface Precipitation Rates from Hurricane Florence obtained 9/14/18 The Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer 2 (AMSR2) instrument on the Global Change Observation Mission - Water 1 (GCOM-W1) provides global passive microwave measurements of terrestrial, oceanic, and atmospheric parameters for the investigation of global water and energy cycles. Near real-time (NRT) products are generated within 3 hours of the last observations in the file, by the Land Atmosphere Near real-time Capability for EOS (LANCE) at the AMSR Science Investigator-led Processing System (AMSR SIPS), which is collocated with the Global Hydrology Resource Center (GHRC) DAAC.

 

September 14, 2018
NASA SPoRT Sea Surface Temperatures from 9/13/18 at 6:00 UTC
UPDATE 9/21/18: SPoRT Sea Surface Temperatures (SST) composite image from 9/20/18. View the latest SPoRT SST image: https://weather.msfc.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/sportPublishData.pl?dataset=sst   UPDATE 9/14/18: NASA SPoRT Sea Surface Temperatures from 9/13/18 at 6:00 UTC

 

September 14, 2018
Precipitation rates within Hurricane Florence from the GPM IMERG "early run" half hourly data product, obtained 9/14/18 at 15:00 UTC.
UPDATE 9/18/18: Over the weekend #HurricaneFlorence brought torrential rains and record flooding to the Carolinas. This GPM IMERG visualization shows storm-total accumulated rainfall on the left for 9/12/18 - 9/17/18 vs. a sequence of 3-hour accumulations on the right https://t.co/numzHJXzb2 pic.twitter.com/pzAgkVrRXl— NASA Precipitation (@NASARain) September 17, 2018 UPDATE 9/14/18: Precipitation rates (mm/hr) within Hurricane Florence from the GPM IMERG "early run" half hourly data product, obtained 9/14/18 at 15:00 UTC.

 

September 12, 2018
Dr. David Greene and Jim Bridenstine
NASA’s Disaster Program lead Dr. David Green discusses NASA’s efforts to study storms like Hurricane Florence and other natural disasters with NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine.

 

September 10, 2018
GPM Core Observatory overpass of Hurricane Florence from September 7, 2018.
Video of GPM Observes Tropical Storm Florence Temporarily Weakened by Wind Shear   GPM passed over Tropical Storm Florence on September 7, 2018. As the camera moves in on the storm, DPR's volumetric view of the storm is revealed. A slicing plane moves across the volume to display precipitation rates throughout the storm. Shades of green to red represent liquid precipitation. Frozen precipitation is shown in cyan and purple. NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core observatory satellite flew over Tropical Storm Florence on September 7, 2018. At that time, the storm was experiencing strong wind shear. The storm later restrengthened into a hurricane.  The GPM Core Observatory carries two instruments that show the location and intensity of rain and snow, which defines a crucial part of the storm structure – and how it will behave. The GPM Microwave Imager sees through the tops of clouds to observe how much and where precipitation occurs, and the Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar observes precise details of precipitation in 3-dimensions. GPM data is part of the toolbox of satellite data used by forecasters and scientists to understand how storms behave. GPM is a joint mission between NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.   

 

September 10, 2018
ARIA Damage Proxy Map of the Hokkaido, Japan earthquake comparing data from before (August 23, 2018) and after (September 6, 2018) the earthquake. 
ARIA Damage Proxy Map of the Hokkaido, Japan earthquake comparing data from before (August 23, 2018) and after (September 6, 2018) the earthquake.  The Advanced Rapid Imaging and Analysis (ARIA) team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, and Caltech created a Damage Proxy Map (DPM) depicting areas in the southwestern part of Hokkaido, Japan, that are likely damaged (shown in red and yellow pixels) as a result of the earthquake on September 5, 2018. The map is derived from synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images from the Advanced Land Observing Satellite (ALOS-2), operated by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). The images were taken before the earthquake on August 23, 2018 and after the earthquake on September 6, 2018. The map covers an area of 70 by 57 kilometers, shown by the large red polygon. Each pixel measures about 30 meters across. The color variation from yellow to red indicates increasingly more significant ground surface change. Preliminary validation was done by comparing with the high-resolution airborne optical imagery provided by the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan. This damage proxy map can be used as guidance to identify damaged areas.  For more information about ARIA, visit: http://aria.jpl.nasa.gov

 

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