Hurricane Earl Along the North Carolina Coast
On Sept. 2, 2010, the U.S. National Hurricane Center reported that Hurricane Earl was roughly 245 miles south of Cape Hatteras, NC, and about 720 miles south-southwest of Nantucket, Mass. A Category 3 hurricane, Earl packed maximum sustained winds of 125 miles per hour.
MODIS, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer, on NASA's Terra satellite captured this natural-color image of Hurricane Earl grazing the North Carolina coast. Researchers participating in the Genesis and Rapid Intensification Processes mission flew NASA's DC-8 and WB-57 planes and the robotic Global Hawk aircraft through and over Hurricane Earl on Sept. 2 as the storm approached the Carolina coast.
During flights earlier in the week, researchers noticed that dry air surrounded Earl. Hurricanes usually derive energy from moist air, and dry air can weaken or even stop a storm.
Image Credit: NASA