Nav: Home

NASA's GPM looks at John's rainfall rates in eastern Pacific Ocean

August 07, 2018

The Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core observatory satellite had an extremely good view of strengthening Tropical Storm John on August 6, 2018 and measured its rainfall rates.

On Aug.6 at 3:08 a.m. EDT (0708 UTC) the satellite passed right over John's center of circulation. GPM's Microwave Imager (GMI) and Dual-Frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) instruments provided excellent coverage of precipitation associated with tropical storm John. GPM showed that the large tropical cyclone was becoming well organized and had intense rainfall within feeder bands that were spiraling toward John's center. GPM's radar (DPR Ku Band) revealed that a band of powerful storms northeast of John's center were dropping rain at a rate of close to 160 mm (6.3 inches) per hour.

The GPM satellite's radar data (DPR Ku Band) were used to show the 3-D structure of rainfall in tropical storm John. The Dual-Frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) is one of the main instruments on the GPM Core Observatory satellite. The DPR Ku Band(13.6 GHz) radar is an updated version of the radar that flew on the TRMM satellite from 1997 to 2015.

GPM's radar showed that storm tops were tall in a feeder band on JOHN's eastern side but the tallest tower was measured in storms just north of JOHN's center of circulation. GPM's DPR found that the tall storms north of JOHN's center were reaching heights above 13.7 km (8.5 miles). GPM is a joint mission between NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, JAXA.

On Aug. 6, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said, "The GPM pass helped set the initial motion at 300/7 kt, somewhat to the left of the previous estimate." Tropical storm John is in a favorable environment for intensification into a hurricane. The water is warm and wind shear is low."

On August 7, Hurricane John continues to strengthen while moving near weakening Tropical Storm Ileana along the west coast of Mexico. Infrared data from NASA's Aqua satellite provided forecasters with temperature data that showed the cloud top temperatures in John had cooled as the storm intensified into a hurricane. At 5 a.m. EDT (0900 UTC), the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said the eye of Hurricane John was located near latitude 17.3 North and longitude 109.1 West. John is moving toward the northwest near 9 mph (15 km/h), and a faster northwestward motion is forecast for the next few days. On the forecast track, John should pass to the southwest of Baja California Sur late Wednesday into Thursday.

Maximum sustained winds are near 90 mph (150 kph) with higher gusts. Some strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours, and John is forecast to become a major hurricane tonight or early Wednesday, Aug. 8.

NHC noted that swells generated by John are expected to begin affecting the coasts of southwestern Mexico and the southern portion of the Baja California peninsula during the next day or so.

For updated forecasts on John, visit the NHC website:

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Related Hurricane Articles:

Hurricane resilience in the Bahamas
A new Stanford-led study provides information on how to invest in natural coastal ecosystems that the Bahamian government, community leaders and development banks are applying in post-disaster recovery and future storm preparation in the Bahamas.
NASA finds a weaker hurricane Juliette
Hurricane Juliette has been weakening and NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite provided a look at the strength of storms within.
NASA sees Dorian become a hurricane
NASA's Terra satellite passed over the northwestern Atlantic Ocean as Dorian reached hurricane status during the afternoon of August 28, 2019.
Landslides triggered by Hurricane Maria
Hurricane Maria hit the island of Puerto Rico on 20 September 2017 and triggered more than 40,000 landslides in at least three-fourths of Puerto Rico's 78 municipalities.
NASA sees Atlantic's Leslie become a hurricane
NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of Hurricane Leslie that revealed strong storms circled the center.
NASA sees Walaka becoming a powerful Hurricane
The Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core satellite passed over the Central Pacific Hurricane Center and analyzed Walaka's rainfall and cloud structure as it was strengthening into a hurricane.
NASA finds a weaker Hurricane Olivia
Infrared data from NASA's Terra satellite revealed that the area of coldest cloud topped thunderstorms has dropped from the previous day, indicating weaker uplift and less-strong storms
NASA looks at heavy rainmaker in Hurricane Lane
Cloud top temperatures provide scientists with an understanding of the power of a tropical cyclone.
Hector weakens but remains Category 4 Hurricane
Hurricane Hector has weakened slightly but still remains a robust Category Four storm at present.
UA forecast: Below-average hurricane activity
The UA hurricane forecasting model, which has proved to be extremely accurate over the years, is calling for fewer hurricanes in the Atlantic this year on the heels of a devastating 2017.
More Hurricane News and Hurricane Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Sound And Silence
Sound surrounds us, from cacophony even to silence. But depending on how we hear, the world can be a different auditory experience for each of us. This hour, TED speakers explore the science of sound. Guests on the show include NPR All Things Considered host Mary Louise Kelly, neuroscientist Jim Hudspeth, writer Rebecca Knill, and sound designer Dallas Taylor.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#576 Science Communication in Creative Places
When you think of science communication, you might think of TED talks or museum talks or video talks, or... people giving lectures. It's a lot of people talking. But there's more to sci comm than that. This week host Bethany Brookshire talks to three people who have looked at science communication in places you might not expect it. We'll speak with Mauna Dasari, a graduate student at Notre Dame, about making mammals into a March Madness match. We'll talk with Sarah Garner, director of the Pathologists Assistant Program at Tulane University School of Medicine, who takes pathology instruction out of...
Now Playing: Radiolab

Kittens Kick The Giggly Blue Robot All Summer
With the recent passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, there's been a lot of debate about how much power the Supreme Court should really have. We think of the Supreme Court justices as all-powerful beings, issuing momentous rulings from on high. But they haven't always been so, you know, supreme. On this episode, we go all the way back to the case that, in a lot of ways, started it all.  Support Radiolab by becoming a member today at