NASA sees Tropical Storm Philippe off Florida coast

October 30, 2017

Tropical Depression 18 had strengthened into Tropical Storm Philippe and on Sunday, Oct. 29 was located off the east coast of Florida. NASA's Aqua satellite saw some strong storms with heavy rainfall potential along Florida's central east coast on Oct. 29.

Tropical Depression 18 formed in the Caribbean Sea and moved into the Gulf of Mexico and to Florida's east coast.

On Oct. 29, a Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for the Cuban provinces of Isla de la Juventud, La Habana, Ciudad de la, Habana, Matanzas, Cienfuegos, and Villa Clara and the northwestern Bahamas.

NASA's Aqua satellite passed over Philippe on Oct. 29 at 3:05 a.m. EDT (0705 UTC) and analyzed the storm in infrared light to show temperatures. The MODIS or Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer instrument aboard NASA's Aqua satellite revealed cloud top temperatures as cold or colder than minus 70 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 56.6 degrees Celsius). NASA research indicates very cold cloud tops with the potential to generate very heavy rainfall. Storms east and south of the center were weaker.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) said at 8 a.m. EDT (1200 UTC), the center of Tropical Storm Philippe was estimated near latitude 27.6 North, longitude 79.0 West. Philippe has accelerated and is now moving toward the northeast near 32 mph (52 kph). This general motion is expected to continue through Monday, Oct. 30. On the forecast track, the center of Philippe will continue to move quickly away from the Florida east coast and the northwestern Bahamas this morning, and then move over the open western Atlantic by this afternoon.

Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 50 mph (85 kph) with higher gusts. Some additional slight strengthening is forecast during the next day or so. The estimated minimum central pressure based on nearby surface observations is 997 millibars.

NHC said Philippe is expected to become a post-tropical cyclone by tonight, and be absorbed by an extratropical low on Monday.

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

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