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Hurricane Season 2008: Pancho (Indian Ocean)
March 28, 2008

Pancho Losing Its Punch

Satellite image of Pancho Credit: NASA/JPL
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Tropical cyclone Pancho has steadily weakened over the last 24 hours as its maximum sustained winds dropped from 90 knots (103 mph) to 70 knots (80 mph), and will continue fading. By Sunday, March 30, Pancho will be an extra-tropical cyclone.

On March 28, at 9:00 GMT (5:00 a.m. EDT) Pancho was located in the southern Indian Ocean near 24.2 degrees south latitude and 108.9 degrees east longitude, or about 310 miles west of Learmonth, western Australia. Pancho is moving southeast near 9 knots (9 mph).

This visible image from March 28 at 5:59 GMT (1:59 a.m. EST) was created by data from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) on NASA's Aqua satellite.

Pancho is the circular area of cloudiness in the left center of the image, and to the left of Australia.

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

March 25, 2008

Cyclone Pancho is 'Lefty' of Australia in the Indian Ocean

Satellite image of Cyclone Pancho Credit: NASA/JPL
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"Pancho and Lefty" is an old country song by Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, and now there's a Cyclone Pancho spinning in the Indian Ocean.

Pancho is the 26th cyclone in that ocean basin, making for a very busy cyclone season. On Tuesday, March 25, 2008 at 15:00 Zulu time (11:00 a.m. EDT), Pancho was located near 15.0 degrees south latitude and 104.3 degrees east longitude, or 455 nautical miles east-southeast of the Cocos Islands, and to the northwest, or "left" of Australia.

The Cocos Islands are located in the Indian Ocean, off the West coast of Australia, approximately one-half the way between Australia and Sri Lanka.

Pancho has recently moved on a south-southeastern track and increased its forward speed slightly. Satellite imagery indicates that Pancho is getting a little stronger and better organized. Pancho's maximum sustained winds are around 50 knots (57 mph).

Sea surface temperatures are warm enough (over 80 degrees Fahrenheit) to enhance the development and strength of the storm over the next day.

This visible image of Pancho (lower left) was created on March 25 at 7:11 Zulu Time (3:11 a.m. EDT) by data from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS), an instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite.

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