GPM

Overview

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. 

The GPM Core Observatory carries the first space-borne Ku/Ka-band Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) and a multi-channel GPM Microwave Imager (GMI). The DPR instrument, which provides three dimensional measurements of precipitation structure over 78 and 152 mile (125 and 245 km) swaths, consists of a Ka-band precipitation radar (KaPR) operating at 35.5 GHz and a Ku-band precipitation radar (KuPR) operating at 13.6 GHz. Relative to the TRMM precipitation radar, the DPR is more sensitive to light rain rates and snowfall. In addition, simultaneous measurements by the overlapping of Ka/Ku-bands of the DPR can provide new information on particle drop size distributions over moderate precipitation intensities. In addition, by providing new microphysical measurements from the DPR to complement cloud and aerosol observations, GPM is expected to provide further insights into how precipitation processes may be affected by human activities.

The GMI instrument is a conical-scanning multi-channel microwave radiometer covering a swath of 550 miles (885 km) with thirteen channels ranging in frequency from 10 GHz to 183 GHz. The GMI uses a set of frequencies that have been optimized over the past two decades to retrieve heavy, moderate and light precipitation using the polarization difference at each channel as an indicator of the optical thickness and water content.

Latest Updates

August 25, 2017
GPM precipitation radar data from Hurricane Harvey on 8/25/17.
Hurricane Harvey's has continued to intensify today as it moves toward the Texas coast. Bands of rain from the hurricane were affecting the Gulf coast from Louisiana to southeastern Texas. The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission core observatory satellite had another look at hurricane Harvey on August 25, at...
August 28, 2017
GPM IMERG precipitation totals for Hurricane Harvey from August 21st - August 27th 2017.
Despite its earlier demise, after rejuvinating over the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, Hurricane Harvey has become a major weather maker as it unleashes historical flooding over parts of coastal Texas. Harvey began on the 17th of August as a weak tropical storm about 250 miles (~400 km) east of Barbados in the Leeward Islands. Over the next two days, Harvey continued moving steadily westward passing through the Leeward Islands as a still weak tropical storm and entered into the east central Caribbean. On the 19th, Harvey succumbed to the effects of northeasterly wind shear over the...
May 9, 2017
GPM IMERG 7 day rainfall accumulation ending on May 7th, 2017 for the Quebec region.
GPM IMERG 7 day rainfall accumulation ending on May 7th, 2017 for the Quebec region. 1-, 3- and 7-day accumulations are available as shapefile and GeoTIFF files for the affected areas: https://pmm.nasa.gov/precip-apps Time series of the affected areas are available through NASA Giovanni: https://giovanni.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/giovanni/  
April 14, 2017
IMERG precipitation accumulation from New Zealand.
Two extra-tropical cyclones recently dropped very heavy rain over New Zealand, Debbie and Cook. As Cook's remnants continue to move away, NASA analyzed the heavy rainfall generated from the double extra-tropical punch. Tropical cyclone Debbie dumped extreme amounts of rain over the northeastern coast of Australia when it hit the Queensland coast on March 28, 2017. After drenching northeastern Australia Extra-tropical Cyclone Debbie transported a river of water...
April 3, 2017
Deadly Flooding Rains Near Mocoa, Colombia Measured By GPM IMERG
Click here to view animated GIF Late Friday night and Saturday morning flash flooding and mudslides killed over 250 people in Mocoa, Colombia. Extremely intense storms added heavy rain to water logged terrain around Mocoa. Water from this heavy rainfall converged into a river that runs close to Mocoa causing it to overflow it's banks with...
April 1, 2017
Landslide susceptibility and fatalities map from the NASA Global Landslide Catalog.
Torrential rains on the night of Friday March 31st 2017 caused three rivers surrounding the southern Colombian city of Mocoa to overflow -- sending a torrent of mud and debris surging through the city. At least 254 people were killed.  The above image shows the Global Landslide Susceptibility map for the affected region, overlaid with the estimated total fatalities due to landslides from 2007-2016 on the left.  This data was...
March 29, 2017
Animated 3D look at precipitation from tropical cyclone Debbie.
Tropical cyclone Debbie formed in the Coral Sea northeast of Australia om March 24, 2017. Debbie intensified and had hurricane force wind speeds within a day of formation. While headed toward northeastern Australia Debbie reached it's maximum sustained wind speeds estimated at over 100 kts (115 mph) on March 27, 2017 (UTC). Tropical cyclone Debbie came ashore on March 28th and brought destructive winds and extremely heavy rain to northeastern Australia. It was reported that heavy rainfall caused flash flooding that cut off a coastal town and covered several roads in Queensland. ...
February 23, 2017
IMERG rainfall estimates for the period from Feb. 15 at 00:30 UTC (Feb. 14 at 7:30 p.m. EST) to Feb. 23 at 23:00 UTC (6 p.m. EST).
NASA has estimated rainfall from the Pineapple Express over the coastal regions southwestern Oregon and northern California from the series of storms in February, 2017. IMERG rainfall estimates for the period from Feb. 15 at 00:30 UTC (Feb. 14 at 7:30 p.m. EST) to Feb. 23 at 23:00 UTC (6 p.m. EST). The initial surge was responsible for bringing part of the rainfall (up to about 2 to 3 inches) was seen over the coastal regions southwestern Oregon and northern...
January 7, 2017
GOES and IMERG satellite image of atmospheric river hitting the US west coast.
Video of Atmospheric River Slams California   After more than four years of drought, Californians may wonder where the current rain is coming from. Using satellites, NASA scientists have a unique view of the sources of precipitation, and how it reaches the western United States. Rain is often carried by narrow tendrils of moisture called atmospheric rivers that occur all over the world, shown here in white. The atmospheric rivers that affect the western United States are known as the Pineapple Express because they transport water vapor from as far south as Hawaii to California...
January 12, 2017
GPM IMERG precipitation accumulation from 1/7/17 - 1/10/17.
GPM IMERG precipitation accumulation from 1/7/17 - 1/10/17. Click here to view an animated GIF. An atmospheric river has been flooding California and other parts of the western United States with rain and snow for nearly a week. Precipitation...
January 12, 2017
Flood Extent from MODIS Aqua / Terra as of 1/12/17.
Significant amounts of rain in early January have caused significant and widespread flooding in southern Thailand. Learn more about the flood recovery efforts on the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC) website Flood Extent from MODIS Aqua / Terra as of 1/12/17. MODIS suface water extent data from 1/12/17. View this data on an interactive map: http://projectmekongnasa.appspot.com/...
October 12, 2016
IMERG total of hurricane matthew.
In this animation Hurricane Matthew travels up the east coast from Florida to the Carolinas. On October 8, 2016 Matthew (still a category 2 hurricane) dumps massive amounts of rain throughout the southeast dousing North and South Carolina. GPM then flies over the area revealing precipitation rates on the ground. As we zoom in closer, GPM's DPR sensor reveals a curtain of 3D rain rates within the massive weather system. To download:...
August 15, 2016
NASA Analyzes Deadly Louisiana Flooding
Record-setting rainfall and flooding in southern Louisiana have been calculated at NASA with data from satellites. An extremely severe rainfall event hit the states of Louisiana and southern  Mississippi when a very slow moving low pressure system continuously pulled tropical moisture from the Gulf of Mexico. NASA's IMERG data from Aug. 8 to Aug. 15, 2016 showed over 20 inches (508 mm) of rainfall was estimated in large areas of southeastern Louisiana and...
October 7, 2016
Satellite-based measurements of rainfall that fell on Haiti from September 28 to October 7, 2016, as compiled by NASA.
On October 4, 2016, Matthew slammed into southwestern Haiti near Les Anglais as a category 4 hurricane. Over the next few days, the slow-moving storm dropped upwards of 800 millimeters (30 inches) across parts of the impoverished nation. While aid workers and government officials have only begun to tally the damage, preliminary assessments suggest that more than 800 people have died as a result of the...
October 6, 2016
GPM precipitation data from hurricane Matthew
NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core observatory satellite flew over Hurricane Matthew several times as the category 4 storm headed toward Florida. 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. Video of GPM Monitors...
September 30, 2016
GPM Finds Intense Rainfall In Matthew Rainband
Matthew rapidly intensified Thursday evening and winds increased to 100 kts (115 mph) by Friday September 30, 2016. The GPM core observatory satellite flew over Hurricane Matthew on September 20, 2016 at 0946Z (5:46 AM EDT). A rainfall analysis from GPM's Microwave Imager (GMI) and Dual-Frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) showed that the Matthew had heavy rainfall in the northern side of the newly formed eye wall. GPM’s radar area of coverage (...
August 12, 2016
GPM gets a closer look at Louisiana floods
Twice on August 12, 2016 GPM flew over a massive rainstorm that flooded large portions of Louisiana. The flooding was some of the worst ever in the state, resulting in a state of emergency. Tens of thousands of people were evacuated from their homes in the wake of this unprecedented event.  Throughout the course of August 12 (UTC) GPM captured the internal structure of the storm twice and GPM IMERG measured the rainfall accumulation on the ground.  Video of GPM Provides a Closer Look at the Louisiana Floods   NASA's GPM satellite is designed to measure rainfall...
September 27, 2016
GPM Precipitation data from Typhoon Megi
Three typhoons have battered Taiwan in the past few weeks. Super Typhoon Meranti, the strongest typhoon of the year, caused havoc as it passed to the south of Taiwan on September 14, 2016. Typhoon Malakas clipped northeastern Taiwan a few days later. Typhoon Megi has now caused injuries, deaths and destruction as it passes over northeastern Taiwan. The GPM core observatory satellite passed over on September 26, 2016 at 2231 UTC when typhoon Megi was...

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