India floods situation worsens in UP, Bihar and Orissa

More than two million people have been affected by floods in India as torrential rains lash Orissa, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar states.

Heavy monsoon rains have been battering parts of India for the past fortnight.

More than 80 people have died in flood-related incidents, and some areas have been cut off by rising waters.

Heavy rains in Uttar Pradesh (UP) have killed more than 30 people across the state. A flood alert has been issued in eight districts in Bihar.

In Orissa, the worst affected state, vast parts of 10 districts have been inundated by flood waters, officials say.

Special Relief Commissioner PK Mohapatra said 55 people had died - some drowned, while others died from snakebites and in wall collapses.

More than 10 people who had gone missing after the boat in which they were travelling overturned in the Brahmani river in Dhenkanal district were rescued on Monday, officials say.

Some areas have been cut off because of breaches to river banks and embankments. Helicopters are the only way to bring food and water to people stranded there.

Officials said that more than 130,000 in Orissa alone have been evacuated to safety as the relief and rescue operation moves into full swing.

Hundreds of thousands of people in the state are reported to be taking refuge in trees or on the tops of buildings as flood waters continue to rise.

Flowing full
In UP officials say that most people were killed in wall and house collapses on Sunday caused by the incessant rain in the eastern districts of Varanasi, Jaunpur and Mirzapur.

Relief Commissioner KK Sinha said that most died in their sleep when the roofs of their mud houses collapsed.

Officials say that the water levels of two major rivers in UP - the Ganges and Gomti - are on the rise. Other rivers are full, but below the danger mark.

In neighbouring Bihar state, authorities have sounded a flood alert in eight districts, including the capital, Patna, after heavy rains led to a rise in the water levels on Ganges and Sone rivers.

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Missouri River Flood Damage Revealed

Officials do not expect the Missouri River to fully return to its banks until October. As it recedes farmers are seeing their fields for the first time since June and what they are finding is discouraging. Sand dunes, strange debris and deep gouges the floodwaters carved into their once-fertile land are the scars of flooding. The soil quality has also been diminished because the floodwaters killed off many of the microbes that help crops grow and compacted the soil.

Farmland along the Missouri River in Nebraska, Iowa and Missouri may be out of production for at least a year. As an example of the damage left behind, Scott Olson, a farmer near Tekamah, Neb., found a new ditch that's about 300 feet wide, one-quarter mile long, and more than 15 feet deep.

Clarke McGrath, agronomist with the Iowa department of Agriculture and Natural Resources, says any time water stands on a field for more than a couple days the soil starts to stagnate because of the lost microbes and the weight of the water. McGrath advises that farmers may need to allow weeds to grow on the land or plant a cover crop such as winter wheat to get roots back in the soil and help microbes grow. Without doing that, there's a risk that whatever crop is planted on the land won't perform well.

The Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency warns that a critical flood insurance deadline is approaching for many policy holders whose properties were damaged as a result of this year's flooding along the Missouri River. For some, the deadline could be as early as this Thursday, September 29.

The first step for flood insurance policy holders is to call their insurance agent to open a claim for the flood damage and provide current contact information so they may be reached as necessary throughout the process. If a claimant is unsure whether or not the "Proof of Loss" was properly submitted, they should contact their insurance agent in order to meet the 120-day deadline.

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Hurricane Hilary may turn toward Baja

SUMMIT COUNTY — Hurricane Hilary regained strength Monday, redeveloping sustained winds of 135 mph as it continued to move west over warm waters and in a low wind-shear environment. The storm is expected to weaken during the next few days as it moves over cooler water, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Whether or not Hilary will curve sharply north and potentially affect Baja is still unclear. Some of the forecast models show the storm making a sharp jog to the northeast Wednesday, on a path that could lead Hilary toward the southern end of the peninsula, but other forecasts suggest the hurricane will once again start heading out into the open waters of the Pacific. Check the NHC forecast discussion for more details.

The hurricane center said the uncertainty toward the end of the five-day forecast period is still quite high, so residents of southern Baja will probably be watching the storm closely the next few days. In any case, Hilary is likely to bring some big surf to Baja and potentially even parts of California.

In the Atlantic, the hurricane center now says that the remnants of Tropical Storm Ophelia are again showing signs of organization. That area of disturbed weather will bring heavy rain to parts of the northern Leeward Islands in the next few days. Forecasters said there’s a 60 percent chance the system will reform as a tropical cyclone in the next 48 hours.

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Orissa flood: 17 dead, 21 lakh hit in 10 districts

Orissa continued to reel under one of the worst floods in recent memory, as rising floodwater in 3,128 villages across 10 districts claimed 17 lives, while affecting more than 21.6 lakh people.

The floods in Baitarani, Brahmani, Budhabalanga and Subarnarekha river systems, which came less than a week after the massive floods in Mahanadi river system, have marooned over 1,100 villages, mostly in Bhadrak, Jajpur, Kendrapara and Keonjhar districts. Though water-levels in Baitarani came down, Brahmani continued to rise menacingly. The flood in Mahanadi river system in the second week of September affected 3.4 million people in 19 districts, causing a loss of Rs 2,122 crore to the State.

Officials at the State Emergency Centre said that during the last 48 hours, five choppers from Air Force, Navy and the State’s own choppers have air-dropped 9,009 food packets worth 360 quintals in marooned villages of Bhadrak, Jajpur, Keonjhar and Kendrapara. Besides, 10 teams of NDRF (307 men with 60 boats and other accessories) have been deployed for the rescue and relief operations. These teams have already started evacuating the marooned people to safer places.

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Typhoons, Cyclones and Hurricanes: What's the Difference?

Typhoon Roke is currently pounding central Japan, causing massive blackouts, flooding and at least three deaths. Roke is the second typhoon to hit Japan this month, coming only three weeks after Typhoon Talas struck the west side of the island nation, killing more than 60 people.

These types of large storms are seasonal, running almost exclusively between the spring and the new year. So far, there have been a number of major storms across the world, including Hurricane Irene, which slammed the Caribbean and traveled up the East Coast of the United States.

So what exactly is the difference between a typhoon, a cyclone and a hurricane?

Technically, all three are categorized under the umbrella-term "Tropical Cyclone." But just as a square is a rectangle, but a rectangle is not a square -- the distinction between these three types of storms vary in the details. The difference lies not in any meteorological difference, but in the geographical difference. (Contrary to popular belief, the designation has nothing to do with a storm's rotation. Clockwise or counter-clockwise, it doesn't matter.

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Irene Sounded Strong Climate Change Warning

WASHINGTON DC (IDN) - Goodbye, Irene. Other tempests, too, will straddle parts of the U.S. during the 2011 hurricane season which, as usual, began in June and will run through the end of November. But Irene, though gone, is not forgotten.

Many cannot forget how Irene took away precious lives, destroyed homes, plans and livelihoods. Others remember it for their fearful moments of anticipation when they followed its every move and wondered whether it would affect and alter their lives. Some remember it for the dislocation of their holiday plans by the enforced evacuation of potential hurricane victims from perceived danger zones.

On top of the grim memories, perplexing questions arise, despite the "let's all look the other way" approach of science-deniers, as to whether and how climate change affects weather patterns including the intensity of hurricanes. (Their intensity determines their destructiveness.)

Greater Risks
A great deal of scientific research has been conducted and continues to be undertaken on the impact of climate change, and on the economic consequences that might follow. As research continues, more knowledge is forthcoming, enabling private citizens and policy makers to reach informed decisions.

The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) recently compiled a summary of key items that included the following:

-- Sea levels are rising and allowing storms to reach further inland and damage property. As sea levels rise due to climate change, storms – including hurricanes – have a higher “jumping off point” when they hit land and are able to penetrate further inland before they dissipate, posing greater risks to roads and buildings.

-- Sea levels are expected to rise as the ocean warms and expands and as land-based glaciers and ice sheets rapidly shrink. One recent study estimates that total sea-level rise by the end of the century could be between 2.5 feet and 6.6 feet, though scientists consider the worst-case scenario less likely.

-- Warmer air increases the chance for more intense precipitation that can drive flooding. Since 1958, the amount of rain or snow falling in the heaviest one percent of storms has risen nearly 20 percent on average in the U.S.

On the specific question of how climate change affects hurricanes, the UCS responded: "The short answer is that global warming makes the ocean warmer and increases sea surface temperatures, which can make hurricanes stronger. But several factors, including differences in wind speed and direction, can break up hurricanes. Many future projections show a decrease in the frequency of all hurricanes globally, but a higher chance of intense hurricanes forming when they do occur. The changing nature of hurricanes in a warmer world remains an active area of research."

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Hurricane Irene costs Delaware River and Bay Authority $1.3 million in lost revenue

NEW CASTLE, Del. — Hurricane Irene’s late-August assault on the East Coast cost the Delaware River and Bay Authority more than $1.3 million in lost fares and tolls, officials said Tuesday.

The authority was forced to shut down its Cape May-Lewes Ferry for four days when the storm struck the area and saw traffic drop off sharply on the Delaware Memorial Bridge as drivers stayed off of roadways.

“The DRBA will not be able to make up the revenue lost, particularly at the ferry,” said Jim Salmon, spokesman for the bi-state authority. “August is typically one of the top months for traffic volume at both the Cape May-Lewes Ferry and the Delaware Memorial Bridge.”

Authority commissioners, meeting here Tuesday, were told overall traffic was down 8.6 percent on the bridge with only 1,596,323 vehicles passing through the tolls. At the ferry, which crosses the Delaware Bay between North Cape May and Lewes, Del., only 41,415 vehicles paid fares (down 19.4 percent) and the number of passengers using the crossing dropped 16.9 percent to 138,861.

The figures compare usage numbers from August 2010 compared to August 2011.

Also at the ferry, with terminals in North Cape May and Lewes, food and beverage revenues dropped 12.2 percent this year compared with 2010 and retail revenues fell 17.5 percent , officials said.

The hit from Irene translated to $703,000 less in tolls at the Delaware Memorial Bridge ($8,933,000 compared to the anticipated $9,636,000) and $629,222 less in revenues from the ferry ($2,393,000 compared to the anticipated $3,022,000).

Overall, DRBA officials said total authority revenues totaled $12,707,000 in August, $1,343,000 short of the $14,050,000 which had been anticipated.

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Corps Pegs 2011 Flood Damage to Levees at $2B

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers estimates it will cost more than $2 billion to repair the damage to the nation’s levees, dams and riverbanks caused by this year’s excessive flooding, a sum that dwarfs $150 million it currently has to make such repairs and that doesn’t account for damage from Hurricane Irene or Tropical Storm Lee.

Floodwaters that raged down the nation’s rivers this year have strained dams, eroded riverbanks, filled harbors with silt and ripped football field-sized holes in some earthen levees protecting farmland and small towns. The damage estimate, confirmed to The Associated Press by corps officials, promises to be more significant than with a typical flood in which high water recedes quickly.

The estimate does not factor in flood damage caused by Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee, and the corps does not have an estimate of the damage from those storms yet.

Along some stretches of the Missouri River, levees have been holding back floodwaters since June 1 as the corps lowered water levels from upstream dams that had filled to overflowing with record runoff from rain and winter snows. That water ultimately proved too much for many levees downstream in states such as Iowa and Missouri. Record high water levels also created havoc along the lower Mississippi from Missouri to Louisiana.

“I’m really nervous about it,” Tom Waters, chairman of the Missouri Levee and Drainage District Association, said of the limited resources. “I think the corps is real nervous about it, too.”

The Senate is considering a $7 billion emergency disaster relief bill, but only $1.3 billion of that would go to the corps. A competing House bill would allocate $3.7 billion to overall disaster aid, $226 million of it to the corps, although Congress could provide more money in future legislation.

Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin said he is working with senators in neighboring states to urge support for the emergency relief.

“I have seen firsthand some of the devastation along these rivers and local communities need financial assistance to recover,” Harkin said.

Sensing it might not get all the money it needs, the corps is racing to repair the most essential damaged flood barriers before the spring runoff. Priority is being given to repairing damaged infrastructure that if left unfixed, would put lives at risk when the snows start melting and the 2012 flood season begins. Repairs only meant to safeguard property from future damage would get second billing.

“We are trying to rack and stack them and see which projects need to be done quickly and which ones can be delayed for some time,” said Jud Kneuvean, emergency management chief for the corps’ Kansas City district. “And honestly some of them can’t be delayed. There is a high likelihood for failure. The consequences associated with failure are high.”

Crews have been bulldozing earth back into place along the Mississippi River’s damaged floodwalls, but repairs along much of the Missouri River will have to wait until the water level fully recedes, likely by October. A dry winter would allow repair work to continue, but ice and snow could force them to shut down temporarily.

“We’ve got to be ready to roll when the water recedes because time is our enemy,” said Jud Kneuvean, emergency management chief for the corps’ Kansas City district. “I will cross my fingers that it will be dry through the winter and spring.”

In northwest Missouri’s Holt County, more than 30 levee breaks inundated more than 230 square miles. Presiding commissioner Mark Sitherwood, whose own corn and soybean crops were ruined, said the levee damage will be in the millions.

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Northeast farmers warn of pumpkin shortage after Hurricane Irene

NEW YORK (AP) — Northeastern states are facing a jack-o’-lantern shortage this Halloween after Hurricane Irene destroyed hundreds of pumpkin patches across the region, farmers say.

Wholesale prices have doubled in some places as farmers nurse their surviving pumpkin plants toward a late harvest. Some farmers are trying to buy pumpkins from other regions to cover orders.

“I think there’s going to be an extreme shortage of pumpkins this year,” said Darcy Pray, owner of Pray’s Family Farms in Keeseville, in upstate New York. “I’ve tried buying from people down in the Pennsylvania area, I’ve tried locally here and I’ve tried reaching across the border to some farmers over in the Quebec area. There’s just none around.”

Hurricane Irene raked the Northeast in late August, bringing torrents of rain that overflowed rivers and flooded fields along the East Coast and into southern Canada. Pray saw his entire crop, about 15,000 to 20,000 pumpkins, washed into Lake Champlain.

But pumpkin farmers had been having a difficult year even before the storm. Heavy rains this spring meant many farms had to postpone planting for two or three weeks, setting back the fall harvest, said Jim Murray, owner of the Applejacks Orchard in Peru, N.Y.

A late harvest can be fatal to business because pumpkin sales plummet after Halloween on Oct. 31. Wholesalers need to get pumpkins on their way to stores by mid-September.

Another spate of rain about two weeks before Irene caused outbreaks of the phytophthora fungus —a type of water mold — in many fields, said Jim Stakey, owner of Stakey’s Pumpkin Farm in Aquebogue, on New York’s Long Island.

This week a cold snap threatened to kill the surviving vines, Murray said.

“We were real close to a frost last night,” Murray said Saturday. “It was 34, and if we had had a frost, a lot of immature pumpkins would have never made it.”

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Hurricane Maria Speeds Toward Newfoundland With 80 MPH Winds

Sept. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Hurricane Maria sped toward Newfoundland and is expected to cross the Canadian island later today with winds of at least 74 miles (119 kilometers) per hour, the National Hurricane Center said.

Maria, with maximum sustained winds of 80 mph, was racing northeast across the Atlantic at 45 mph, the center said in a 5 a.m. Miami time advisory. The storm was about 495 miles southwest of Cape Race, Newfoundland, and is forecast to strike Placentia Bay, passing north of St. John’s, a base for offshore oil and gas companies.

On its current track, “the center of Maria should pass near or over extreme southeastern Newfoundland this afternoon,” the center said. “Little change in strength is expected before Maria moves over southeastern Newfoundland.”

Energy companies including Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Hibernia Management & Development Co. have offshore facilities near the storm’s projected path, according to Bloomberg data. Hurricane Igor hit the island last year, killing three people and causing $200 million in damage.

Maria is expected to pass about 170 miles southeast of the Sable Offshore Energy Project’s Thebaud platform, Tanya White, a Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board spokeswoman, said yesterday in an e-mail.

The Sable natural-gas project is owned by a group including Exxon Mobil Canada Properties Ltd., Shell Canada Ltd., Imperial Oil Resources, Pengrowth Energy Corp. and Mosbacher Operating Ltd., according to its website.

Hurricane Warnings

A hurricane warning is in place for the coast of Newfoundland from Arnolds Cove to Brigus South, and a tropical storm warning, indicating winds of at least 39 mph are expected, was set for the area from Stones Cove to Arnolds Cove and from Brigus South to Charlottetown, the center said.

Hurricane-force winds extend 45 miles from Maria’s center. Tropical storm-strength winds reach 205 miles.

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In the wake of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee, sediment choked the Hudson River in New York City.

On September 7, The New York Times noted the river’s unusual brown or reddish hue, likely driven by runoff occurring upstate.

The Advanced Land Imager (ALI) on NASA’s Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) satellite captured these natural-color images of the Hudson River and East River around Ellis Island. Both images are rotated and north is at right. The top image shows the area on September 12, 2011. The bottom image shows the same place about a year earlier, on September 2, 2010.

Flooding not only raises river levels, but also increases the amount of sediment they carry. Torrential rain eats away at the ground, washing mud and debris into streams. After it is deposited into a river, sediment may sink to the bottom of the riverbed, or may flow with the water toward the sea. Multiple rivers feed the Hudson, and some of the sediment winding up in the river in early September 2011 included reddish clays from the Catskills region, The New York Times reported.

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2011 Atlantic hurricane season

The 2011 Atlantic hurricane season is an event in the annual cycle of tropical cyclone formation. The season officially started on June 1 and will end on November 30. These dates conventionally delimit the period of each year when most tropical cyclones form in the Atlantic basin.[1] However, should a tropical or subtropical cyclone form outside these dates during the calendar year 2011, it would count as part of the 2011 season.

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NASA's Aqua Satellite Spots Flooding from Tropical Storm Arlene in Mexico

On June 30, 2011, Tropical Storm Arlene made landfall near Cabo Rojo in Veracruz, Mexico. As the storm came ashore, the U.S. National Weather Service forecast total rainfall accumulations up to 8 inches (20 centimeters), and warned of potentially life-threatening flash floods and mudslides.

The impact of Arlene’s heavy rain was clear in early July as the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite passed overhead. MODIS captured an image on July 5, 2011 after Arlene had passed through.

The image was created using a combination of visible and infrared light to increase contrast between water and land. In the image, water varies from electric blue to navy. Depending on land cover, areas above water range in color from green to brown. Clouds are pale to medium blue-green.

A network of lakes extends inland from the city of Tampico. In the image from July 5, the lake network appears to have multiplied, with standing water covering large areas northwest and southwest of the city. Standing water is also apparent south of Cabo Rojo.

On July 5, 2011, the Associated Press reported that the Mexican government had raised the official death toll for Arlene to 22. Deaths occurred in multiple states, with the most deaths reported in Hidalgo.

Arlene was the first named Atlantic storm of the season.

Deadly Tropical Cyclones in West Pacific

Saturday, Tropical Depression Meari and the remnants of Tropical Cyclone Haima were located just west of the Korean Peninsula and over northern Laos, respectively.

Meari has continued to weaken as it encountered cooler waters and less favorable wind shear. The storm, however, brought flooding rainfall to northern and eastern parts of the Philippines Thursday and Friday then farther north across Taiwan and the Ryukyu Islands Friday night into Saturday. Ambulong, in the northern Philippines, recorded more than 10 inches of rain since Wednesday. Taipei, the capital city of Taiwan recorded more than 4 inches of rain along with wind gusts near 40 mph.

More than 300,000 people have been affected by the recent flooding in the Philippines. At least 15 people have been reported missing since the storm hit the area.

Over 50 flights were canceled out of Manila due to the unsettled weather. Several ports were also closed due to heavy rain, strong winds and high seas associated with the storm.

Heavy rainfall has also drenched the Korean Peninsula over the past several days as the storm approached. Widespread rainfall of 1-3 inches has already occurred, while more than 7 inches has fallen since Friday in Ulsan, South Korea. At least 13 people have been killed or reported missing since the storm hit the area. Locally heavy rainfall will continue in these areas through Monday.

Meanwhile, Haima has become a remnant low pressure after making landfall in Vietnam. Thanh Hoa received more than 10 inches of rain over the past couple of days due to this storm.

Haima also brought heavy rainfall to southern China, including Hainan, over the past couple of days. Tung Fang, in western Hainan, recorded more than 5 inches of rain during this time.

The heavy rainfall across the region has resulted widespread flooding. Reports indicate that at least seven people have been killed in northern Vietnam from this storm and more remain missing. More than 5,000 people have been evacuated from their homes; meanwhile, at least 900 homes have been destroyed.

Heavy rain over the weekend has shifted into northern Laos where widespread 2-5 inch rainfall occurred. Heavy rain soaked Phonhong where more than 8 inches of rain fell in a 24 hour period from Saturday into Sunday. Heavy rain is expected over the next couple days across Indochina as the remnant low weakens.

Hurricane Beatriz weakened into a tropical storm

MANZANILLO, Mexico – Hurricane Beatriz weakened into a tropical storm and headed out to sea Tuesday after pounding Mexico's resort-studded Pacific coast with heavy rains and winds

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Mexico's government had discontinued a hurricane warning for a stretch of coastline from La Fortuna to Cabo Corrientes. Beatriz is expected to continue weakening

Beatriz's maximum sustained winds have dropped to near 60 mph (95 kph). It is about 110 miles (175 kilometers) south-southwest Cabo Corrientes and moving west into the Pacific at near 12 mph (19 kph).

No injuries or major damage were reported in Manzanillo, said David Sanchez, Manzanillo's civil protection director. He said authorities saw two palm trees that had been knocked over.

About 150 Mexican soldiers were deployed on a rescue mission in case homes needed to be evacuated in Acapulco

Authorities say 100 homes were flooded, 20 trees fell and some avenues in the tourist district were also flooded because of the heavy rains. About 30 parked vehicles were swept by the current.

Tropical Storm Aere-Western North Pacific Ocean

In a time series of imagery from NASA's Aqua satellite, the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument showed Tropical Storm Aere's progress over the weekend on May 6 at 16:59 UTC, May 7 at 05:29 UTC, and Monday, May 9 at 05:17 UTC. Infrared data basically takes the temperature of a tropical cyclone's clouds and the coldest areas indicate the strongest thunderstorms and areas of heaviest rainfall. Those coldest cloud temperatures (highest, strongest thunderstorms) and are as cold as or colder than -63F/-52C.

On May 6, when Aere was a tropical depression (03W) it appeared to be more concentrated with the heaviest rainfall and strongest thunderstorms over open ocean. By Saturday, May 7, those heavy rains overspread land areas. On Monday, May 9, the circulation seemed to become weaker and convection seemed to appear more scattered and has decreased in AIRS imagery.

Warnings are still in effect in the Philippines as Aere continues to move north. Public storm warning signal #1 is in effect in the following provinces: Luzon: Quirino, Ifugao, Mt. Province, Kalinga, Apayao and Batanes. Public storm warning signal #2 is in effect for: Luzon: Cagayan, Babuya and Calayan.

The four fatalities caused by Tropical Storm Aere occurred in Balatan, Camarines Sur where a landslide took three lives, and another person drowned in floodwaters in Leyte. Radio reports also noted that nine people at the Manila airport were injured when lightning struck a plane on the tarmac on May 7.

Tropical Depression 03W-Western North Pacific Ocean

Tropical Depression 03W near the Philippines, according to data from NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite. NASA's Aqua satellite confirmed the data through cold cloud-top temperatures and rain continues to fall in the Philippines today where the storm has been given the local name "Bebeng."

System 93W strengthened into Tropical Depression Three early on May 6 and is forecast to move toward Luzon late into the weekend. At 1500 UTC on May 6, the center of TD03W was located east of Visayas about 460 nautical miles east-southeast of Manila, the Philippines near 11.9 North and 138.0 East. It was moving toward the northwest at 3 knots. Maximum sustained winds are near 30 knots.

On May 6, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) had not issued any warnings in the Philippines. The forecast from PAGASA on Friday, May 6 noted that clouds and scattered showers would affect the Bicol Region, Visayas and northern Mindanao, with thunderstorms developing over the Bicol Region and Visayas. Some of the rainfall could be heavy in those areas and may trigger flash flooding and landslides.

The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite, managed by NASA and the Japanese Space Agency flew over Tropical Depression 03W on Friday, May 6 at 0837 UTC. TRMM noticed that the storm's rainfall was still concentrated on the western side of circulation, although the northern and eastern areas of the storm were also showing rainfall. Only a couple of very small areas of heavy rainfall were seen in the TRMM image around the northeastern fringes of circulation. In those small, isolated areas rain was falling at about 2 inches per hour. Rainfall around the rest of the storm was moderate, falling at rates between 20 and 40 millimeters per hour.

System 93W-Western North Pacific Ocean updates

An infrared image taken from the AIRS instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite on May 4 at 17:11 UTC showed large areas of strong convection on System 93W's west and southern edges, where thunderstorms have very cold cloud-top temperatures (-63F/-52C). That strong convection remained on the low's western side on May 5.

On May 5, System 93W's circulation center appears to be near 11.1 North and 128.3 East, about 475 nautical miles east-southeast of Manila, the Philippines. The surface winds are still estimated between 15 and 20 knots. System 93W is still in warm waters that will assist in its strengthening as it continues moving to the northwest near 8 knots.

The eastern Philippines are already experiencing some light rains from System 93W. At 12 p.m. EDT on May 5, the city of Legazpi, Philippines reported light rain with a temperature of 25C/ 77F. The minimum central pressure was 29.80 inches and falling and winds were blowing from the northeast at 5 mph. Thunderstorms are in the forecast for Friday, May 6 and Saturday May 7, as System 93W moves closer.

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System 93W-Western North Pacific Ocean

System 93W is a large low pressure area in the Western North Pacific Ocean that appears poised for tropical development in NASA satellite imagery.

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured both an infrared and visible image of System 93W on May 4 at 01:53 UTC. The width of the AIRS image track is 1056 miles, the width of System 93W appears to be approximately 800 miles from west to east. The AIRS imagery showed an improved low-level circulation center and unorganized, but deep convection. Convection is rapidly rising air that forms the thunderstorms that power a tropical cyclone.

The strongest convection appeared around the center of System 93W's circulation where cloud-top temperatures were measured to be as cold as or colder than -63F/-52C. Cloud-top temperatures are important because they tell forecasters how high thunderstorms are, and the higher the thunderstorm, the colder the cloud tops and the more powerful the thunderstorms.

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System 95B-Northern Indian Ocean updates

The ragged low pressure area currently sits several hundred miles from Sri Lanka. The system appears to have fallen apart on infrared satellite imagery from NASA's Aqua satellite today.

On May 2 at 0654 UTC, NASA's Aqua satellite passed over the low pressure area called System 95B in the Northern Indian Ocean. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer instrument that flies aboard Aqua, captured an infrared image of the low that showed a disorganized storm. Estimated sustained winds have dropped to 15 knots and the estimated minimum central pressure in the low is near 1010 millibars.

System 95B-Northern Indian Ocean

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite passed over System 95B from its orbit in space and captured an infrared image of the low pressure area on April 29 at 07:53 UTC. Infrared imagery acts like taking the temperature of the system's clouds - and there were some high, very cold clouds that indicated powerful convection and strong thunderstorms in the center. Some cloud top temperatures were as cold as or colder than -63F/-52C. Infrared imagery indicated that there was scattered convection around all sides of the low-level center, and even some curved banding of thunderstorms.

On April 29, System 95B was located about 420 nautical miles east-northeast of Colombo, Sri Lanka near 9.5 North and 96.5 East. System 95B is drifting and currently has estimated sustained surface winds between 15 and 20 knots. Despite the waters in the Bay of Bengal being warm enough to sustain the development of a tropical cyclone, there is a westerly wind field present.

System 91L-Atlantic Ocean

System 91L sparked the interest of forecasters because it had a small chance to develop into a subtropical or tropical storm last week. Now that chance is zero. On Saturday, April 23, 2011, the showers associated with System 91L diminished. At that time, the low was centered about 360 miles north of San Juan, Puerto Rico. Wind shear had taken its toll on the low and weakened it . As a result, the National Hurricane Center issued their final notice about the system on Saturday.

Currently there are no tropical cyclones expected elsewhere in the Atlantic Ocean, and the official hurricane season doesn't start until June 1.

NASA's TRMM Satellite Estimates Australia's Cyclone Season Rainfall

NASA's TRMM satellite measures rainfall from space and data from it was used to create a map of total cyclone rainfall. The TRMM satellite is managed by both NASA and the Japanese Space Agency, JAXA.

At NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. data from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite was used to create the cyclone rain maps. TRMM-based, near-real time Multi-satellite Precipitation Analysis (TMPA), data were used in an analysis to show rainfall contributed by tropical cyclones that have affected Australia in 2011. Hal Pierce of the NASA TRMM team created the image and included the tracks of tropical cyclones on the image.

"The largest tropical cyclone rainfall contribution was over the coast of northwestern Australia with estimated totals of over 600 millimeters (~23.6 inches)," Pierce said. "Cyclones Bianca, Carlos, Twenty, Errol and their remnants were close enough to the northwestern coast of Australia to add to these rainfall totals."

Tropical Low #1 -Atlantic

Hurricane season doesn't start in the Northern Atlantic Ocean until June 1, but a low pressure system in doesn't seem to want to follow the calendar. There's a low pressure area with a small chance for development north-northeast of Puerto Rico, and the GOES-13 satellite captured a visible image of the storm.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) issued a Special Tropical Weather Outlook today, April 20, that noted the low pressure area was located about 460 miles northeast of San Juan, Puerto Rico at 3:35 p.m. EDT. The NHC noted that slow development is possible over next couple of days. The low is moving west -northwest at 10mph.

The image was created using satellite imagery was captured on April 20 at 17:45 UTC (1:45 p.m. EDT) from the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES-13). Although it is not easy to pick out the center of circulation in the image, it is located to the west of the largest area of clouds.

Tropical Storm Errol

NASA's Aqua Satellite Sees Weaker Tropical Depression Errol Crossing West Timor

NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of Tropical Depression Errol's warming cloud temperatures as it was crossing the southern tip of West Timor today. West Timor is the western and Indonesian portion of the island of Timor. To the east lies the Timor Sea, to the west is the Southern Indian Ocean.

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image on April 18 at 04:53 UTC (12:53 a.m. EDT) that showed very little strong convection (rapidly rising air that forms thunderstorms) remained in Errol. The strongest areas of convection had cloud-top temperatures as cold as -63F/-52C. However, AIRS data shows that much of the cloud top temperatures in the depression have since warmed. Cloud-top temperatures are important because they tell forecasters how high thunderstorms are, and the higher the thunderstorm, the colder the cloud tops and the more powerful the thunderstorms. Warming cloud top temperatures mean lower cloud heights and indicate that the storm is growing weaker. It means that there's not as much power to lift the air up to create the thunderstorms that power it.

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Tropical Storm Errol-Southern Indian Ocean

The low pressure area formerly known as System 92S has strengthened overnight and developed into Tropical Storm Errol today, April 15. Infrared imagery from NASA's Aqua satellite showed strong thunderstorms near Errol's center, but they remained off-shore from Western Australia's northern coast.

An infrared image on April 14 at 0517 UTC from NASA's Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument shows that Tropical Storm Errol's strongest thunderstorms with the coldest, highest cloud tops were off-shore from the northern coast of Western Australia. Those thunderstorms had cloud-top temperatures as cold as or colder than -63 F/-52C and brought heavy rainfall. Multispectral satellite imagery also showed a well-defined center of circulation in Errol, and bands of thunderstorms wrapping around its souther and western edges.

Tropical Storm Errol has sustained winds of 40 knots with higher gusts, and is kicking up rough surf along the northern coast of Western Australia today. Errol's center was about 270 miles (434 km) west of Darwin, Australia near 13.1 South latitude and 126.3 East longitude. Errol is currently drifting south-southwestward at 2 knots (2 mph/~4 km) but is expected to start moving to the west-northwest as a result of a strengthening ridge of high pressure building up over Western Australia.

System 92S-Southern Indian Ocean

Visible imagery from NASA's Aqua satellite showed strong convection around the center of developing tropical low 92S that lies north of the Western Australia coastline. System 92S is still in the Timor Sea today. Early this morning (EDT), April 14, it was about 315 miles west of Darwin, Australia. The southern extent of the low pressure area's clouds, however, already stretch over land in Western Australia. The center of System 92S' circulation at 06:30 UTC was near 13.0 South latitude and 125.5 East longitude. The system appears to be consolidating and there is strong convection near the center of circulation. By 8 p.m. WST Australia local time System 92S' center was near 12.5S and 126.3E. That is 127 miles north of Kalumburu. Although it moved from this morning, System 92S is now nearly stationary.

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology has issued a Strong Wind Warning from Kuri Bay to Wyndham for the next 24 to 36 hours. That warning area can expect east-southeasterly wind between 20 and 30 knots with higher gusts and squalls. Seas are expected to be 6 to 10 feet. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured a visible image of System 92S on 0519 UTC on April 13. In the imagery there was area near the center that appears to have texture and shadows. That area is one of higher, more powerful thunderstorms, and is still over open waters of the Timor Sea.

Tropical Storm 97W - Northwest Pacific Ocean

Infrared data from NASA's Aqua satellite has seen potential in a developing tropical low pressure system near Brunei. Brunei is located on the north coast of the island of Borneo, in Southeast Asia. Apart from its coastline with the South China Sea, it is completely surrounded by the state of Sarawak, Malaysia.

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of the tropical low pressure area called "System 97W" on April 6 at 0611 UTC (2:11 a.m. EDT). Infrared data basically takes the temperature of atmospheric, land or oceanic objects. The infrared data revealed the coldest temperatures were in thunderstorm cloud tops around the center of System 97W's circulation. Those cloud tops were as cold as or colder than -63 degrees Fahrenheit (-52 Celsius) indicating strong convection (rapidly rising air that forms the thunderstorms that power a tropical cyclone). That's an indication that the storm is getting stronger. There is also a banding of thunderstorms around the low-level center of circulation.

AIRS data also showed that the sea surface temperatures were above 80F (26.7 C), which is the threshold for maintaining a tropical cyclone, so the water remains a power source for intensification. At 0600 UTC on April 6, 2011, System 97W was about 170 miles west-northwest of Brunei near 6.2 North and 112.4 East. Maximum sustained surface winds are estimated at 15 to 20 knots. Minimum sea level pressure is estimated to be near 1008 millibars.

Tropical Storm 2W -Northwest Pacific Ocean

The second tropical depression of the Northwestern Pacific Ocean season has formed, just as the first depression has dissipated. NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of the depression and observed some strong thunderstorms within, and the storm has already caused warnings to be posted.

On April 5, 2011, Tropical Depression 2W formed about 270 miles (434 km) NW of Anderson Air Force Base, Guam, near 16.1 South and 141.1 East. It was moving east-northeast near 19 knots and had maximum sustained winds near 30 knots. The Northern Marianas are expected to feel the effects of the depression as it continues to move in that direction. A tropical storm warning is in force for Agriahan, Pagan and Alamagan Islands in the Northern Mariana Islands.

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of Tropical Depression 2W on April 5 at 0353 UTC. It showed cold, high, strong thunderstorms around the center of circulation with heavy rainfall west of the Northern Marianas islands.

Tropical Depression 1W-Northwest Pacific Ocean

Tropical Depression 1W formed on April 2 and was dissipating by April 4 a couple of hundred miles east southeast of Vietnam and NASA's Aqua satellite captured its brief life. The Northwestern Pacific Ocean basin can experience tropical cyclones almost all year 'round, except that activity is usually minimal in February and March. So, the first tropical cyclone of the new "season" didn't take long to form after the end of March. The Northwestern Pacific includes all of the area north of the equator and west of the International Date Line, including the South China Sea. The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite passed over Tropical Depression 1W on April 2 when it was born, and then again on April 3rd, when it faded. That was a short life for the first tropical depression of the Pacific Northwest's hurricane season, but only the beginning.

AIRS data on April second at 05:41 UTC showed a cluster of strong thunderstorms surrounding the weak center of circulation of TD1W. Some of those thunderstorms were dropping heavy rainfall and had very high cloud tops, so high they were as cold as -63 Fahrenheit/-52 Celsius. On April 2, TD1W was located about 280 miles east-southeast of Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam near 9.3 North latitude and 111.2 East longitude. It was moving very slowly at 1 knot to the west and maximum sustained winds were near 25 knots. By April 3 at 0900 UTC it had continued moving slowly, only at a rate of 2 knots westward and was then 315 miles (506 km) east-southeast of Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam near 9.1 North and 111.7 East. It still had maximum sustained winds near 25 knots, but wind shear was battering the system.

On April 4 NASA's Aqua satellite passed overhead once again and noticed that TD1W had become much more disorganized and spread out. By the fourth, TD1W had also moved more than 45 miles farther away from Vietnam and into the South China Sea. Strong convection appeared scattered and disorganized on AIRS' infrared imagery and not around the center of circulation.

Tropical Depression that influences weather, sea conditions spotted near sabah

A tropical depression that influences weather and sea conditions has been spotted near Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. The Meteorological Department of Malaysia said the tropical depression was located approximately 482km West-Northwest of Kudat, Sabah and 527km North-Northwest of Miri, Sarawak. The tropical depression is expected to track southeastwards at 4kmph. The department issued a heavy rain and thunderstorms advisory and warning on strong winds and rough seas. Intermittent rain occasionally heavy and windy conditions are expected over Sabah, Divisions of Interior (Kuala Penyu, Beaufort Districts), West Coast (Papar, Penampang, Kota Kinabalu, Tuaran, Kota Belud Districts) and Kudat Kudat, Kota Marudu, Pitas Districts) and Labuan from today and is expected to continue until Wednesday (April 6).

This condition may result in floods over low-lying areas and along river banks. Strong North/Northeasterly winds from 60kmph with waves reaching 5.5 metres occurring over the waters off Condore, Reef North and Layang-layang are expected to continue until Thursday (April 7). The condition is dangerous to all coastal and shipping activities, including workers on oil platforms said the statement.

Tropical Depression 91S-South Pacific

NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite spotted light to moderate rainfall in the system as continues tracking southwest and bringing rains and winds to the northern coast of Western Australia this weekend. System 91S was located in the Timor Sea, west-southwest of Darwin, Australia and was moving in a west-southwesterly direction. System 91S is forecast to continue traveling in that direction and its center is expected to remain at sea over the next several days as it heads toward the Southern Indian Ocean.

As it continues to track along coastal areas of the Northern Territory and Western Australia, cyclone warnings are in effect. A Cyclone Warning is in effect for Western Australian coastal and island areas from Kuri Bay to the Western Australia/Northern Territory border, including Kalumburu and Wyndham. In addition, a cyclone watch is in effect from Kuri Bay to Cape Leveque, not including Derby. The TRMM satellite, operated by both NASA and the Japanese Space Agency, passed over the system at 1451 UTC on April 1. The U.S. Navy and Naval Research Laboratory's Monterey Marine Meteorology Division, Calif. overlaid TRMM rainfall rate imagery on top of Japan's METSAT-2 infrared imagery to provide a complete picture of the low pressure areas cloud extent and rainfall rates. TRMM's precipitation radar instrument measured rainfall rates close to 1 inch (25 mm) per hour.

NASA Satellites Eyeing 4 Tropical Systems Around the World For Possible Development

NASA satellites are all keeping an eye on for possible development. They are Systems 90S, 91S and 99S in the Southern Pacific, and System 93B in the Northern Indian Ocean. Despite a poor chance for development in all of them, one has triggered warnings in northern Australia because of its proximity to land. NASA and the Japanese Space Agency manage the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission or TRMM satellite and TRMM passed over two of those four systems today. TRMM captured light to moderate rainfall in the low pressure area called “System 90S” on March 30 at 01:49 UTC. Rainfall rates were between 5 and 20 millimeters (0.2 and 0.8 inches) per hour within the storm. System 90S is located 500 miles north-northwest of Port Hedland, Australia, near 12.0 South latitude and 116.0 East longitude.

Infrared satellite imagery from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite revealed that the low has consolidated during the morning hours, while the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer-E instrument showed deep convection on the north and south sides of the center of circulation. Despite these developments atmospheric dynamics are not currently favorable, so the Joint Typhoon Warning Center currently gives this low a poor chance for development. The second tropical low pressure area NASA satellites are watching is also 500 miles away from land, and that’s System 99S. System 99S is 500 miles north of the Cocos Islands today, near 9.8 South and 99.4 East. The TRMM satellite measured rainfall rates between 5 and 20 millimeters (0.2 and 0.8 inches) per hour within the System 99S early today. The AIRS infrared imagery captured from NASA’s Aqua satellite shows that areas of deep convection exist on all sides of the low pressure center, but it’s not uniform. Vertical wind shear is currently light and sea surface temperatures are warm enough to support development, however, the chance that it will develop into a tropical storm in the next 24 hours is poor. As the week progresses, perhaps the chance will improve with the environmental conditions.

The third tropical low pressure area isn’t a tropical storm but it has triggered a watch for Australia’s Northern Territories. Because of System 91S’ location, about 200 miles northeast of Darwin, Australia (near 10.0 South and 133.1 East), a tropical cyclone Watch has been issued for the coastal communities between Cape Hotham, Port Keats, including Darwin and the Tiwi Islands. The Tiwi Islands include Melville and Bathurst Islands and are part of Australia’s Northern Territory, 25 miles (40 km) north of Darwin where the Arafura Sea joins the Timor Sea. In addition, a Strong Wind Warning has been issued from Milingimbi to Troughton Island.

Tropical Cyclone Cherono

Tropical Cyclone Cherono and saw some heavy rain still existing in the storm as it dissipates.

The TRMM satellite passed directly above the remnants of tropical cyclone Cherono in the South Indian Ocean on March 22, 2011 at 0225 UTC (March 21 at 10:25 p.m. EDT). TRMM's Microwave Imager (TMI) and Precipitation Radar (PR) showed that Cherono, although weakened, still had some life and was producing very heavy rainfall of over 50 mm/hr (~2 inches) south-southeast of Reunion Island.

The image of Cherono's rainfall was created by Hal Pierce of the TRMM team at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. Rain rates in the center of the image swath are from the TRMM PR, the only spaceborne radar of its kind, while those in the outer portion are from the TMI. The rain rates are overlaid on infrared (IR) data from the TRMM Visible Infrared Scanner (VIRS).

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System 98S (Southern Indian Ocean)

System 98S Southern Indian Ocean
System 98S has been battered with wind shear over the last couple of days and is still holding together as a tropical depression. Infrared satellite imagery from NASA's Aqua satellite revealed an area of strong convection and thunderstorms around the low pressure area's center yesterday, indicating that the low is maintaining strength even in adverse conditions.

On March 16, System 98S was located about 615 nautical miles southeast of Diego Garcia, near 14.2 South latitude and 80.3 East longitude in the Southern Indian Ocean. The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite has been capturing imagery of the low pressure area and today showed that the low level circulation center east of the main area of convection is partially exposed to outside winds.

AIRS infrared imagery also showed that convection had begun flaring or increasing on the western side of the circulation center during the morning hours, indicating strengthening. Flaring convection means the creation of more towering thunderstorms. Thunderstorms power a tropical cyclone. There was also an indication in microwave satellite imagery that thunderstorms were wrapping around the low level center.

Tropical Cyclone Carlos Now Affecting Western Australia

Tropical Cyclone Carlos continues to live and has moved into the Southern Indian Ocean, and is affecting Western Australia.

cyclone Carlos on February 22 at 1850 UTC (1:50 p.m. EST) as the storm's center was battering coastal Australia. TRMM's rainfall data shows that most of the rainfall with Carlos was located off shore but some bands of moderate rainfall were affecting coastal Australia.

Tropical storm force wind speeds on the Saffir Simpson scale estimated to be over 50 kts (~58 mph). Carlos has been predicted to batter the Australian coast as it continues traveling southwestward. It is expected to intensify to minimal hurricane force with wind speeds of 65 kts (~75 mph) on February 24 after moving into the open waters of the Indian Ocean.

Cyclone Dianne Currently Staying Away from Australia

Tropical CycloneWhen NASA's Aqua satellite flew over Tropical Cyclone Dianne on Feb. 18 at 06:47 UTC (2:47 p.m. Australia/Perth local time/1:47 a.m. EST) it provided information to forecasters that showed Dianne moving farther west than previously forecast. That movement is keeping the storm farther away from Western Australia and that's good news because Dianne strengthened.

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument on the Aqua satellite showed a larger area of strong thunderstorms around Dianne's center today, Feb. 18, compared to yesterday. The greatest area of deep convection (rapidly rising air that forms the thunderstorms that power the tropical cyclone) are over the northern semi-circle of the storm.

AIRS infrared data takes temperatures of cloud tops and sea surface temperatures and noticed the stark contrast between the two indicating that the thunderstorm cloud tops were very high, very cold (-52C/-63F) and very strong. Meanwhile, the sea surface temperatures were very warm (warmer than 80F/26.5C) and adding power to Dianne.

System 98S Southern Indian Ocean

NASA’s Aqua satellite is already seeing the potential in a tropical low pressure area to blossom into a tropical cyclone through its very cold cloud top temperatures.

A low pressure system known as System 98S is currently moving over the northern coast of Western Australia appears to have a good chance for developing into a tropical cyclone later this week once it slides into the warm waters of the Southern Indian Ocean.

On Monday, January 24, 2011 EST, the low was nearing Kuri Bay, located on the northern coast of Western Australia. It is forecast to continue moving southwest and skip over water along the northern coast as it heads toward Beagle Bay, Derby and Broome will be affected by the low’s outer rains and winds as it continues tracking southwest.

Tropical Storm Vania South Pacific Ocean

Tropical Storm Vania on January 12 at 1246 UTC (7:46 a.m. EST). TRMM noticed that some of the thunderstorms reached more than 9 miles (~15 kilometers) high, indicating strong uplift and a heavy rainmakers. TRMM also noticed that the heaviest rains were falling in the northeastern quadrant of the storm and indicate rainfall at about 2 inches per hour. Other quadrants of the storm were generating moderate rainfall rates between .78 to 1.57 inches per hour. TRMM is managed by NASA and the Japanese Space Agency, JAXA.

TRMM captured the rainfall rates of Tropical Storm Vania on January 12 at 1246 UTC. The yellow and green areas indicate moderate rainfall between .78 to 1.57 inches per hour. The heaviest rains were falling in the northeastern quadrant of the storm (Red) and indicate rainfall at about 2 inches per hour.

System 93P

Tropical Storm
System 93P, which is also designated in the Fiji Islands as “03F” for third tropical disturbance formed in the South Pacific Ocean. On Monday, January 10, 2011 at 0600 UTC (1 a.m. EST), it was located about 115 miles east-northeast of Port Vila, Vanuatu near 16.9 South and 170.0 East.

Vanuatu is an island nation located in the South Pacific Ocean about 1,090 miles (1,750 kilometers) east of northern Australia, and 301 miles (500 kilometers) northeast of New Caledonia and west of Fiji.

The infrared image provided an appearances of circular motion, but didn’t show a well-organized storm. Areas that are brighter white are areas of stronger convection

Tropical Storm Tasha

Cyclone Tasha recently made landfall just south of Cairns along the northeast coast of Queensland, Australia during the early morning hours on Christmas Day.

The storm, which had formed just off the coast, came ashore as a Category 1 cyclone (equivalent to a tropical storm on the U.S. Saffir-Simpson scale) with wind gusts of up to 105 kph (~65 mph) reported just offshore. The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite (known as TRMM) was launched back in 1997 with the primary purpose of measuring rainfall in the Tropics.

With its unique combination of active radar and passive microwave sensors, TRMM has also served as a valuable platform for monitoring tropical cyclones. TRMM captured an image of Tasha at 15:32 UTC (5:32 am AEST) on the 24th of December 2010 just before it became a Category 1 cyclone. Tasha appears as an area of enhanced rainfall with moderate to localized areas of heavy rain embedded within a broader area of light to moderate rain draped along the coast of northeastern Australia.

Tasha has no eye and little evidence of banding, which indicates that it is not an intense system. In fact, Tasha's winds did little damage and the storm was quickly downgraded from a cyclone by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology's Tropical Cyclone Warning Centre; however, heavy rains from the storm and its remnants had a substantial impact on the region by exacerbating flood conditions already in place as a result of prior excessive rainfall across eastern Australia. The result was widespread flooding with many areas cut off.