Frances: a hurricane likely to live in infamy.
This behemoth of a storm has come in to shore on a slow boat, soaking up energy from the sun-drenched waters of the tropical Atlantic.
This hurricane shows a classical shape and highly organized structure, befitting one of the most powerful phenomena known in nature. New pictures from NASA now reveal the inner structure of this tropical giant as it lumbers toward Florida.
With data from the space agency's remarkable TRMM satellite, experts can now see huge towers of heated atmosphere and clouds rising above the main body of the storm. These towers indicate a powerful, self-perpetuating engine inside Frances, and offer clues to the storm's overall behavior. Using an instrument on the AQUA satellite, NASA experts are also studying how the waters in the western Atlantic warmed over the summer, creating the reservoir of energy that enabled Frances to grow.
As Frances continues to rumble across the tropics, data continues to come in.