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Hurricane Season 2009: Hurricane Jimena (Eastern Pacific)
09.04.09
 
September 4, 2009

Jimena's clouds over the Gulf of California and western Mexico on September 4 at 10:45 a.m. EDT. > View larger image
The GOES-11 satellite captured Jimena's clouds over the Gulf of California and western Mexico (center of image) on September 4 at 10:45 a.m. EDT.
Credit: NASA/GOES Project

Hurricane Jimena imageThe GOES-11 satellite captured Hurricane Jimena from September 1 to 4, as it moved north in the eastern Pacific Ocean, made landfall over Baja California and moved into the Gulf of California before making a final landfall in western Mexico. Click on image to view movie. Credit: NASA/GOES Project
GOES-11 Image Captures Jimena Weakening Over Gulf of California

Jimena crawled over the southern and central Baja California over the last couple of days bringing rainfall and gusty winds, and is now weakening while centered in the Gulf of California.

The Gulf of California is the area of water between the Baja California peninsula and western (mainland) Mexico. At 11 a.m. EDT (8 a.m. PDT) on September 4, Jimena had sustained winds near 30 mph. Her center was located near 27.7 north and 111.8 west, about 40 miles northeast of Santa Rosalia, Mexico. She was crawling west near 2 mph and had a minimum central pressure of 1008 millibars.

The Geostationary Operational Environmental (GOES) satellite, GOES-11 saw Jimena's clouds over the Gulf of California and extending into western Mexico in a satellite snapshot on Fridady, September 4. GOES is operated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. NASA's GOES Project, located at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md. creates some of the satellite images from the GOES satellites.

Jimena is crawling west and is expected to weaken further to a "remnant low pressure area" later today.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center













September 3, 2009

Hurricane Jimena on September 2 at 4:55 p.m. EDT when her center was directly over the southern tip of Baja California. > View larger image
The MODIS instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite captured this view of Hurricane Jimena on September 2 at 4:55 p.m. EDT when her center was directly over the southern tip of Baja California.
Credit: NASA/MODIS Rapid Response Team
Still from Quicktime animation. View Quicktime video
This Quicktime animation fades from a visible image of Hurricane Jimena's clouds on September 1 to the TRMM satellite's measurement of heavy rainfall within the storm.
Credit: NASA/SSAI, Hal Pierce
The center of Jimena's circulation is still over land, and most of the cloud cover appears the east of the center. > View larger image
NASA's Aqua satellite AIRS instrument captured Jimena on September 3 at 4:53 a.m. EDT. Jimena's clouds are the rounded area (purple and blue) located mostly in the Gulf of California. The center of circulation is still over land, although most of the cloud cover appears the east of the center. The small area of purple in the middle of the image indicates strong thunderstorms still exist.
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
Tropical Storm Jimena Still Affecting Baja California

> View an .mp4 movie of Jimena
The GOES-11 satellite captured Hurricane Jimena from September 1 to 4, as it moved north in the eastern Pacific Ocean, made landfall over Baja California and moved into the Gulf of California before making a final landfall in western Mexico. FOR STORM HISTORY from NASA's Hurricane page, go to: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/hurricanes/archives/2009/h2009_Jimena.html Credit: NASA/GOES Project Jimena is now a tropical storm over the central Baja Peninsula. NASA's Aqua and Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellites caught perfect images of Jimena's clouds and rainfall over the last 24 hours before and after she made landfall and weakened to a tropical storm. Aqua caught Jimena's center in the middle of the southern Baja California peninsula, while TRMM noticed areas of heavy rain in her center just before she made landfall yesterday.

The MODIS instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite captured a view of Hurricane Jimena on September 2 at 4:55 p.m. EDT when her center was directly over the southern tip of Baja California. It showed an eye obscured by cloud cover, indicating that the storm had weakened after making landfall. The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument also on Aqua captured Jimena on September 3 at 4:53 a.m. EDT. The image showed Jimena's clouds mostly in the Gulf of California. The center of circulation is still over land, although most of the cloud cover is east of the center.

The TRMM satellite passed almost directly over Hurricane Jimena again on September 1 at 7:41 p.m. EDT (2341 UTC) creating the data used to make a TRMM rainfall analysis image. Jimena had weakened to a category 3 hurricane with wind speeds of about 105 knots (~132.25 mph) by that time. Very heavy rainfall is shown by the TRMM rainfall analysis north of Jimena's eye. The National Hurricane Center noted that "Jimena is expected to produce additional rain accumulations of 3 to 5 inches over portions of western Mexico and 1 to 2 inches over the central portion of the Baja Peninsula during the next day or so. Isolated maximum storm-total amounts of 15 inches are possible in association with Jimena." TRMM data will be used to confirm these estimates.

At 8 a.m. EDT today, September 3, Jimena's maximum sustained winds are near 45 mph. Her center was located 45 miles south-southwest of Santa Rosalia, Mexico, near 27.9 north and 112.6 west. Jimena is moving north-northwest near 5 mph. Estimated minimum central pressure is now up to 1001 millibars, indicating a weakened storm.

Jimena's slow movement is still causing higher than normal tide levels with large and dangerous battering waves along portions of the coast of the central Baja Peninsula and northwestern mainland Mexico. Those conditions will gradually subside during the next day or two.

Jimena's track over the next couple of days now takes her to the west central part of the Baja Peninsula, per the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Fla. She will continue slowly weakening while moving toward the north-northwest. Jimena may cause flooding as it produces heavy rainfall over the southern Baha Peninsula and western Mexico in the next couple days.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center












September 2, 2009

Hurricane Jimena when her center was southeast of the southern tip of Baja California. > View larger image
The MODIS instrument on NASA's Terra satellite captured this view of Hurricane Jimena on September 1 at 2:35 p.m. EDT when her center was southeast of the southern tip of Baja California. Today she's making landfall.
Credit: NASA/MODIS Rapid Response Team
Hurricane Jimena Lashing Southern Baja California

NASA's fleet of earth-observing satellites continue to provide valuable data to the National Hurricane Center on the inner workings of Hurricane Jimena as she drops copious amounts of rain and generates dangerous surf along the Baja today. Today, September 2 at 8 a.m. EDT, Jimena's center is now making landfall on the west coast of the Southern Baja California Peninsula.

NASA's Terra satellite flew over Jimena September 1 at 2:35 p.m. EDT and captured an image of the extent of her cloud cover. At that time her cloud-filled eye was still somewhat visible, and her center was located to the southwest of the southernmost tip of Baja California. At that time, Jimena's center had undergone an "eyewall replacement," and was weakening.

Today the National Hurricane Center warned that "Jimena is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 5 to10 inches over the southern half of the Baja Peninsula and portions of western Mexico during the next couple of days...with possible isolated maximum amounts of 15 inches." That means a lot of flooding and dangerous mud slides are likely. Flooding in the city of La Paz has already been reported this morning.

In addition, Jimena is causing a dangerous storm surge with large and dangerous battering waves. News reports from Bloomberg News indicated that shortly after midnight Pacific Time, hurricane force winds of at least 74 mph and 13 foot waves affected the western coast of La Paz. The Times also reported that many tourists, fishermen and surfers chose not to evacuate. Some resorts have boarded their windows, and the Los Cabos Airport was closed.

At 8 a.m. EDT today, Jimena's maximum sustained winds were near 105 mph making her a category two hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Scale. Weakening is forecast during the next 24 hours, but Jimena is still forecast to be a hurricane when it moves inland. Her center was located 30 miles south of Cabo San Lazaro, Mexico, near 24.5 north and 112.1 west. Jimena is moving north-northwest near 13 mph and is expected to slow. Estimated minimum central pressure is 970 millibars.

There's now been a change in the forecast track for Jimena. Previously, computer models had Jimena crossing the Sea of Cortez (the Gulf of California) and making a final landfall in western Mexico. Now, computer models are projecting that Jimena crawl up the Baja in a northwesterly direction up to the Central Baja California peninsula on Thursday, when she'll re-enter the Eastern Pacific Ocean.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center



September 1, 2009

A powerful Hurricane Jimena about to impact Baja California (bottom right). > View larger image
AIRS infrared image from August 31 a 4:59 p.m. EDT shows the icy clouds of powerful Hurricane Jimena about to impact Baja California (bottom right), a fading Tropical Depression Kevin (left at sea), and a trail of pyrocumulus clouds stretching from Los Angeles to New Mexico from the California fires.
Credit: NASA JPL, Ed Olsen
NOAA's GOES-11 flew over Jimena and captured a side view of the storm on Sept. 1. > View larger image
NOAA's GOES-11 image (top) has a red line showing where CloudSat flew over Jimena and captured a side view of the storm on Sept. 1. The CloudSat image (at the bottom in the larger image link) indicated Jimena's highest clouds as high as 15 kilometers (9.3 miles), indicating strong convection and a powerful hurricane.
Credit: NASA/JPL/Colo.St.Univ./NRL-Monterey
Hurricane Jimena as she was approaching Baja California on August 31, 2009 1:55 p.m. EDT. > View larger image
The Moderate Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument that flies on NASA's Terra satellite captured Hurricane Jimena as she was approaching Baja California on August 31, 2009 1:55 p.m. EDT.
Credit: NASA/MODIS Rapid Response Team
NASA Infrared Imagery Sees Landfalling Jimena, Weak Kevin, and Pyrocumulus Clouds

It's unusual to see towering clouds that are created from smoke and fires, but that's what showed up in the latest satellite imagery from NASA, when also capturing powerful Hurricane Jimena and Tropical Depression Kevin in the Eastern Pacific Ocean. Jimena's outer rainbands were already spreading over southern Baja California at 11 a.m. EDT.

"I have never before seen the signature of a pyrocumulus cloud in the infrared channel which I use for hurricane imagery," said Ed Olsen of the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) Team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The pyrocumulus clouds are towering cumulus clouds that were created by the smoke and heat from the California wildfires that are currently burning around Los Angeles. In the AIRS infrared image, they stretch from Los Angeles, Calif. and sweep into Nevada, Arizona and New Mexico between latitude 32 and 36.

The AIRS instrument flies onboard NASA's Aqua satellite and provides valuable infrared data on cloud top temperatures. They're important because they tell forecasters how high thunderstorms are in a tropical cyclone. The higher the thunderstorm, the more powerful.

At the same time, an extremely dangerous Hurricane Jimena is approaching Baja California. This is a powerful storm with sustained winds that are a Category Four on the Saffir-Simpson Scale. AIRS revealed very high, cold, powerful thunderstorms in Jimena's center of circulation, so high that they're colder than minus 63 degrees Fahrenheit (F).

NASA's CloudSat also flew above Jimena and captured a side view of the storm earlier today. The CloudSat data indicated Jimena's highest clouds as high as 15 kilometers (9.3 miles), verifying the AIRS data and indicating strong convection and a powerful hurricane.

At 11:00 a.m. EDT (8 a.m. PDT) today, September 1, Jimena has maximum sustained winds near 145 mph, a 10-mile per hour drop from three hours before (Category five is 155 mph sustained winds are greater). Hurricane force winds extend 45 miles from her center, and tropical storm force winds go out up to 140 miles from her center. Her center was located near 20.6° North and 110.4° West, about 140 miles south-southwest of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. She was moving north-northwest near 12 mph and had a minimum central pressure near 945 millibars, up from 931 millibars three hours ago. That rise in pressure indicates a weakening which was evidenced in her sustained winds dropping 10 mph over that same time.

Residents and interests in Baja California and northwestern mainland Mexico should have all their preparations and evacuations done.

Meanwhile, Tropical Depression Kevin appears dazed and confused on satellite imagery and is expected to fade to a remnant low pressure area later today. In fact, NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite showed this morning at 4:44 a.m. EDT that his center of circulation is so elongated that it looks like he has two possible centers of circulation.

Kevin is expected to slowly spin down, as more stable air enters into his circulation. Stable air means thunderstorm formation will slow to a stop and then Kevin will have faded. At 11 a.m. EDT today, September 1, Kevin had sustained winds of 35 mph, but that stable air moving in will weaken him. He's located in the Eastern Pacific Ocean about 835 miles west-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California, near 18.0 north and 121.7 west. He's moving north near 3 mph and is expected to slow to a stop where he'll fade to a remnant low tomorrow. His minimum central pressure was 1008 millibars.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center



The image that TRMM captured shows the horizontal distribution of rain intensity looking down into the storm. > View larger image
TRMM captured a unique image of Jimena at 8:06 UTC (1:06 am PDT) early on the morning of the 31st of August 2009 as the storm was moving northwest well offshore but parallel to the western coast of Mexico. The image that TRMM captured shows the horizontal distribution of rain intensity looking down into the storm.
Credit: SSAI/NASA, Hal Pierce
Hurricane Jimena Intensifies in the East Pacific, Threatens Baja

Jimena became the fifth hurricane to form in the East Pacific so far this year, which is about average for the midpoint of the season. It also became the third major hurricane of the season; typically there are about four major hurricanes in the East Pacific every year.

Jimena became a named tropical storm during the early morning hours (Pacific Daylight Time, PDT) of August 29, 2009 about 250 miles southwest of Acapulco, Mexico. It formed from a tropical depression that was moving westward through the East Pacific. This depression had its origins as a tropical easterly wave that emerged off of the coast of Africa nearly 2 weeks prior before crossing the Caribbean and Central America and emerging into the East Pacific. Most of the storms that form in the East Pacific actually originate from African easterly waves.

After it became a tropical storm, Jimena quickly intensified over warm water and was already a category 2 hurricane later that same day. In fact, within 24 hours of becoming a named tropical storm, Jimena was a major category 3 hurricane with sustained winds estimated at 100 knots (~115 mph) by the National Hurricane Center (NHC). By the morning of August 30, Jimena had intensified even further into a powerful category 4 hurricane with sustained winds estimated at 115 knots (132 mph) by NHC. The storm was now a little over 500 miles (~800 km) south-southeast of the southern tip of Baja California and moving to the northwest.

The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite (known as TRMM) was placed into service in November of 1997. From its low-earth orbit, TRMM has been providing valuable images and information on tropical cyclones around the Tropics using a combination of passive microwave and active radar sensors, including the first precipitation radar in space. TRMM captured a unique image of Jimena at 8:06 UTC (1:06 a.m. PDT) early on the morning of the August 31, 2009 as the storm was moving northwest well offshore but parallel to the western coast of Mexico. The image that TRMM captured shows the horizontal distribution of rain intensity looking down into the storm as viewed by TRMM. Rain rates in the center of the swath are from the TRMM Precipitation Radar (PR), and rain rates in the outer swath are from the TRMM Microwave Imager (TMI). These rain rates are overlaid on infrared (IR) data from the TRMM Visible Infrared Scanner (VIRS).

It is apparent from this image that Jimena is a well-organized, well-developed and powerful storm. Jimena's well-developed and intense cyclonic circulation is evidenced by the tight curvature of the concentric rain bands surrounding the center as well as the nearly complete inner eyewall (inner most green and red ring indicating moderate to intense rain rates). At the time of this image, Jimena was a strong category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds estimated at 125 knots (144 mph) by the NHC.

Jimena is expected to turn more northward and make landfall in the southern Baja Peninsula as a major hurricane despite an expected increase in wind shear and slightly coolers waters.

TRMM is a joint mission between NASA and the Japanese space agency JAXA.

Text credit: Steve Lang, SSAI/Goddard Space Flight Center



August 31, 2009

MODIS captured Hurricane Jimena approaching Baja California on Sunday, August 30, 2009. > View larger image
The Moderate Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument that flies on NASA's Aqua satellite captured Hurricane Jimena as she was approaching Baja California on Sunday, August 30, 2009 4:20 p.m. EDT.
Credit: NASA/MODIS Rapid Response Team
TRMM captured Hurricane Jimena on Monday, August 31, the eye is visible with heavy rainfall around it. > View larger image
The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission captured Hurricane Jimena on Monday, August 31, 2009 10:03 a.m. The eye is visible with heavy rainfall around it. The image is false-colored with yellow, green and red areas, which indicate rainfall between 20 and 40 millimeters (.78 to 1.57 inches) per hour. Red areas are considered moderate rainfall.
Credit: NASA/SSAI, Hal Pierce
QuikScat flew over Jimena late on August 29 at 9 p.m. EDT, just after she powered up to hurricane strength. > View larger image
NASA's QuikScat flew over Jimena late on August 29 at 9 p.m. EDT, just after she powered up to hurricane strength.
Credit: NASA/JPL, Peter Falcon
NASA Satellites Confirm Powerful Jimena in Clouds, Winds and Rainfall

Category four hurricanes like Jimena in the Eastern Pacific Ocean typically have organized cloud cover and very heavy rain, and two NASA satellites confirm those two ingredients in Hurricane Jimena today, August 31.

NASA and the Japanese Space Agency's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite flew over Category Four Hurricane Jimena on Monday, August 31, 2009 10:03 a.m. and captured the horizontal pattern of her rain intensity. Jimena had heavy rainfall around her eye at the time.

The Moderate Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument that flies on NASA's Aqua satellite captured Hurricane Jimena as she was approaching Baja California on Sunday, August 30, 2009 4:20 p.m. EDT.

NASA's QuikScat flies over Jimena daily, and captures her surface winds using microwave technology that can peer through her clouds! The National Hurricane Center uses QuikScat data daily to help make their forecasts, identify wind speed, and help locate the low-level center of tropical cyclones.

QuikScat can determine the speed of the rotating winds. QuikScat images show wind speeds in different colors and wind direction are indicated by small barbs. The highest wind speeds are normally shown in purple, which indicate the strongest winds, and this morning, August 31, Jimena's maximum sustained winds were of Category Four hurricane strength.

At 11 a.m. EDT today, August 31, Jimena had maximum sustained winds near 145 mph (It is 10 mph under Category Five status). Jimena is a compact storm, with hurricane force winds only extending only 30 miles out, and tropical storm force winds out to 80 miles from the center.

Her center was about 355 miles south-southeast of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, near 18.0 north and 108.3 west. She was moving northwest near 8 mph, and had a minimum central pressure near 940 millibars.

For updates on the forecast track of Hurricane Jimena, go to the National Hurricane Center website at: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center











This time-series of AIRS satellite image shows Jimena as she grew to a Category 4 hurricane. > View larger image
This time-series of AIRS satellite image shows Jimena's high, cold clouds (depicted in purple and blue) become organized from Aug 27-30 when she went from a low pressure area to a powerful Category 4 hurricane.
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
NASA Satellite Sees Hurricane Jimena Explode in Strength Over 4 Days

Hurricane Warnings are up for the southern Baja California, as powerful Category Four Hurricane Jimena threatens. Jimena developed over the weekend, and the infrared instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite captured that explosive development.

A hurricane warning is in effect for the southern portion of the Baja California peninsula from Bahia Magdalena southward on the west coast...and from San Evaristo southward on the east coast, including Cabo San Lucas. Hurricane conditions are expected in the Warning area within 24 hours.

NASA's Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument captured the explosive growth of Hurricane Jimena in the Eastern Pacific Ocean from August 27-30, 2009.

On August 27, Jimena was a low pressure area and AIRS showed lower cloud tops and a disorganized system. On August 28, AIRS captured Jimena when she became Tropical Depression 13-E. By 2 a.m. EDT August 29, Jimena was a Tropical Storm, and AIRS saw a better organized, more rounded storm with growing thunderstorms. By 8 p.m. EDT August 29, Jimena became a Hurricane. By 1:30 p.m. August 30, Hurricane Jimena strengthened to a Category Four Hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Scale and AIRS revealed towering thunderstorms around her center of circulation.

In infrared imagery, NASA's false-colored purple clouds are as cold as or colder than 220 Kelvin or minus 63 degrees Fahrenheit (F). The blue colored clouds are about 240 Kelvin, or minus 27F. Today's satellite imagery indicated Jimena's cloud top temperatures were colder than minus 63F indicating powerful thunderstorms in her center.

At 11 a.m. EDT today, August 31, Jimena had maximum sustained winds near 145 mph making her a powerful Category Four hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Scale (It is 10 mph under Category Five status). Jimena is a compact storm, with hurricane force winds only extending only 30 miles out, and tropical storm force winds out to 80 miles from the center.

Her center was about 355 miles south-southeast of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, near 18.0 north and 108.3 west. She was moving northwest near 8 mph, and had a minimum central pressure near 940 millibars.

The National Hurricane Center said in its 11 a.m. EDT update today, "Jimena is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 5 to 10 inches over the southern half of the Baja California peninsula and portions of western Mexico during the next 2 days, with possible isolated maximum amounts of 15 inches. A storm surge along with large and dangerous battering waves will produce significant coastal flooding along the Baja California peninsula."

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center



August 30, 2009

GOES-12 satellite this morning, August 30, caught remnants from Danny exiting Newfoundland (top right). > View larger image
The GOES-12 satellite this morning, August 30, caught remnants from Danny exiting Newfoundland (top right) and Hurricane Jimena on the Mexican west coast, and Tropical Storm Kevin farther west (bottom left) this morning at 7:45 a.m. EDT.
Credit: NASA/GOES Project
Danny's Remnants Exit Newfoundland, Jimena and Kevin Active in Pacific

While Danny's remnants exit Newfoundland, Canada this morning, Jimena has become a powerful Category Three hurricane in the Eastern Pacific, and Tropical Storm Kevin developed to her west.

The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite, or GOES-12, operated by NOAA, caught remnants from Danny exiting Newfoundland and Hurricane Jimena on the Mexican west coast, and Tropical Storm Kevin farther west this morning at 7:45 a.m. EDT. NASA's GOES Project created imagery from the GOES-12 satellite that clearly shows Danny's clouds stretched from the Mid-Atlantic north to New England. The image also shows a powerful Hurricane Jimena with a clear eye, and a less intense Tropical Storm Kevin.

Danny merged with a low pressure area yesterday and brought rains to Long Island, eastern Massachusetts, coastal New Hampshire and Maine, before moving into Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland, Canada. On Sunday morning, August 30, the rains associated with what was Danny are exiting Newfoundland. Live Environment Canada radar reveals the rains: http://www.weatheroffice.gc.ca/radar/index_e.html?id=ERN.

At 9 a.m. EDT this morning, Jimena's center was located about 305 miles south of Cabo Corrientes, Mexico near 16.0 north and 105.7 west. She had maximum sustained winds near 115 mph. She was moving northwest near 12 mph. Minimum central pressure is near 965 millibars, a drop of 25 millibars in 24 hours indicating rapid intensification. The National Hurricane Center noted "interests in western Mexico and the southern Baja California Peninsula should monitor the progress of Jimena."

Farther to her west, the second area of low pressure forecasters were watching on Friday has developed into Tropical Storm Kevin. He had sustained winds near 50 mph, and is forecast to strengthen. He's located about 995 miles southwest of the southern tip of Baja California, near 14.1 north and 121.9 west. Kevin was north at 7 mph and had a minimum central pressure of 1000 millibars.

Now that Danny is history. there is one new area in the Atlantic that forecasters are watching for likely development, located 950 miles east of the Windward Islands. This area has a greater than 50 percent chance of development, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center



August 29, 2009

GOES-12 satellite this morning, August 29, saw a dying Danny on the U.S. east coast (top right). > View larger image
The GOES-12 satellite this morning, August 29, saw a dying Danny on the U.S. east coast (top right) and an explosive Tropical Storm Jimena on the Mexican west coast (bottom left).
Credit: NASA/GOES Project
NASA Sees Dying Danny Drenching Eastern New England, Jimena Exploding in Pacific

Weekends and tropical cyclones have gone together this hurricane season, and this weekend, Danny is dying in the Atlantic, while Jimena has exploded in fast development in the eastern Pacific Ocean.

Danny is in the process of being absorbed by an extra-tropical low pressure area over North Carolina, and has lost his punch in terms of sustained winds. Danny has been downgraded to a tropical depression this morning, Saturday, August 29. However, he's still packing a lot of heavy rain, and bringing dangerous surf along the U.S. east coast from the Mid-Atlantic to the Northeast into Canada.

Danny's heavy rainfall is mostly located to the north and northeast of the storm, as evidenced in NASA satellite data. As he continues merging with the extra-tropical low pressure system today, his center will stay off-shore and keep moving north. Ahead of his center, heavy rains will pour over eastern Long Island, eastern Massachusetts, coastal New Hampshire and Maine, before moving into Nova Scotia, Canada.

When the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite (managed by NASA and JAXA) flew over tropical storm Danny yesterday, August 28, it revealed that only moderately heavy rain was occurring then in an area northeast of Danny's center of circulation. That also holds true today, August 29 as Danny is now raining on the northeastern U.S. On the radar, Danny's rainfall looks like a large "V" shape entering New England.

For live radar from Boston, Massachusetts, go to: http://radar.weather.gov/radar.php?rid=BOX&product=NCR&overlay=11101111&loop=yes.

Dangerous surf is the other issue Danny is causing. Beachgoers should not venture into the ocean, as Tropical Depression Danny is stirring up surf 3-5 feet high in the mid-Atlantic. Surf is much higher, as much as 6-10 feet, near Long Island, N.Y., and coastal Rhode Island, Connecticut, and south and east-facing Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

At 5 a.m. EDT today, Saturday, August 29, the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Fla. issued its last advisory on Tropical Depression Danny. At that time, Danny's remnants had sustained winds near 35 mph, and he was moving north-northeast near the same speed! Danny's center was located 540 miles south-southwest of Nantucket, Mass.; or 80 miles southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. He had an estimated minimum central pressure near 1007 millibars.

The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite, or GOES-12, operated by NOAA, caught a dying Danny on the U.S. east coast and an explosive Tropical Storm Jimena on the Mexican west coast this morning at 7:45 a.m. EDT. NASA's GOES Project created imagery from the GOES-12 satellite that clearly shows Danny's clouds stretched from the Mid-Atlantic north to New England. The image also shows a powerful Tropical Storm Jimena that developed early this morning.

Tropical Storm Jimena developed from one of the two areas that forecasters were watching yesterday. It developed and intensified quickly and by 8:18 a.m. this morning, Saturday, August 29, she had maximum sustained winds near 70 mph. Light upper level winds and warm sea surface temperatures are fueling her intensification.

At 9 a.m. EDT this morning, Jimena's center was located about 270 miles southwest of Acapulco, Mexico near 14.2 north and 102.8 west. She was moving west near 10 mph and will turn north-northwest in the next day or so. Minimum central pressure is near 990 millibars. Jimena is expected to become a hurricane later today.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center



August 28, 2009

Two areas of showers and thunderstorms in the Eastern Pacific that may develop into tropical storms. > View larger image
This infrared satellite image from late last night shows 2 areas of showers and thunderstorms (blue areas of cold high clouds) in the Eastern Pacific Ocean (bottom center of image), that may develop into tropical storms over the weekend.
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
NASA Infrared Satellite Eyes 2 Potential Pacific Tropical Cyclones

Two areas of showers and thunderstorms located south of Tropical Storm Ignacio's remnants are being closely watched for development. Forecasters use infrared satellite imagery to determine cloud temperatures, and get an idea about the height and strength of thunderstorms.

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite flies over the Eastern Pacific Ocean daily, and captured the two areas on August 27at 5:23 p.m. EDT. Although both didn't have signature shapes of tropical cyclones yet, the National Hurricane Center reported on Friday, August 28 that the potential for development is at least 50%. So, over the weekend, there's a potential for them to develop into tropical storms. If they do, they'd be named Jimena and Kevin.

Infrared imagery measures temperatures and not only can it see cold, high cloud tops in tropical cyclones, but also the warm ocean waters that fuel them. The colder the clouds are, the higher they are, and the more powerful the thunderstorms are that make up the cyclone.

The first area of disorganized showers and thunderstorms are located a couple of hundred miles south of Acapulco, Mexico, and are associated with a low pressure area. Because conditions are favorable for development, there's a medium chance (30-50 percent) of the system becoming a tropical depression this weekend.

The second area of showers and thunderstorms are further west, about 950 miles south-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California. Conditions there are also favorable for development: warm waters over 80 degrees Fahrenheit and light surrounding winds. This system has the same chance to develop over the weekend.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center