Satellites Tracking Powerful Hurricane Maria From Space
The storm’s impending arrival has forced the huge Arecibo Observatory, a 1,000-foot-wide (305 meters) radio dish in Puerto Rico, to cease operations through Thursday (Sept. 21).
The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) satellite — a joint effort of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency and NASA — got a dramatic look at Maria’s turbulent interior yesterday. GPM’s observations revealed a thunderstorm cell inside Maria that reached up into the stratosphere.
And, early this morning, NASA’s Aqua satellite got a look at Maria in infrared light. Measurements by Aqua’s Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer instrument found cloud-top temperatures of thunderstorms in the hurricane’s eyewall to be a maximum of minus 80 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 62 degrees Celsius).