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Hurricanes – view from space

Jul - 4 - 2011
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Hurricane Ike just rolled across Cuba, and soaked parts of Haiti – both regions still reeling from recent Hurricane Gustav. Ike appears to be weakening now, but is headed tward the Gulf Coast of the U.S., and may yet strengthen. The crew aboard the International Space Station was able to take a photo of Ike from 220 miles overhead last Thursday – one in a long series of great NASA photographs of hurricanes from space. Here are some of the best, from the past several years.

On the morning of Sept. 4, at a time when this photo was taken from the window of the International Space Station with a height of 220 miles, Hurricane Ike strengthened to a fourth category. Ike appeared in the northwest Atlantic Ocean, through the wind, 120 nautical miles in some places gusting to 145 miles. ( Photo Courtesy NASA and the Crew of the International Space Station)

This image provided by NASA from the Terra satellite shows Hurricane Ike off the Lesser Antilles as it approaches the Bahamas Thursday Sept. 4, 2008 at 10:40 a.m. EDT. ” Ike looks like it’s a very, very dangerous storm,” said FEMA Administrator David Paulison. (NASA/AP Photo

A nadir view from the Space Shuttle Atlantis on Sept. 18th, 2006 gives a good look at the eye of Hurricane Gordon. At the time the photo was taken, with a digital still camera eqipped with a 28mm lens, the center of Gordon was near 37.5 north latitude and 46.4 west longitude moving west-northwest. The sustained winds were at 80 nautical miles per hour with gusts to 95 nautical miles per hour. (NASA)

This image features the eye of Hurricane Ivan at center, partially framed by solar array panels on the International Space Station. One of the strongest hurricanes on record, Ivan was photographed Saturday from an altitude of about 230 miles by Astronaut Edward M. (Mike) Fincke, NASA ISS science officer and flight engineer, aboard the orbital outpost. At the time, Ivan was in the western Caribbean Sea and reported to have winds of 160 mph. (NASA)

5On Sept. 12th, 2003, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument onboard NASA’s Terra satellite captured this true-color image of Hurricane Isabel northeast of the Lesser Antilles Islands. At the time Isabel maintained a rare Category 5 status with maximum sustained winds near 160 mph. (Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC

This view of Hurricane Felix was taken from the Earth-orbiting International Space Station (ISS) by an Expedition 15 crewmember using a digital still camera equipped with a 28-70 mm lens set at 28 mm focal length on Sept. 3, 2007 at 11:38:29 GMT. The ISS was located at the nadir point of 16.0 degrees north latitude and 84.0 degrees west longitude nearly over the coast of eastern Honduras when this image was taken. The sustained winds were 165 miles per hour with higher gusts making it a category 5 on the Saffir-Simpson scale. (NASA

A view from the Space Shuttle Atlantis on Sept. 18th, 2006 gives a good look of Hurricane Gordon. At the time the photo was taken, with a digital still camera equipped with a 28mm lens, the center of Gordon was near 37.5 north latitude and 46.4 west longitude moving west-northwest. The sustained winds were at 80 nautical miles per hour with gusts to 95 nautical miles per hour. (NASA)

This image featuring Hurricane Catarina was taken on March 27th, 2004 by an Expedition 8 crewmember on the International Space Station (ISS). The crew of the ISS acquired this excellent oblique photo of the storm just as it made landfall on the southern Brazilian state of Catarina (the storm has been unofficially dubbed “Hurricane Catarina”). Note the clockwise circulation of this Southern Hemisphere cyclone, the well-defined banding features, and the eyewall of at least a Category 1 system. (NASA)

A look into the eye of the storm from space was provided by astronaut Edward M. Fincke as Hurricane Ivan approached landfall on the central Gulf coast Wednesday afternoon, Sept. 15th, 2004. At the time, sustained winds in the eye wall were reported at about 135 mph as the storm approached the Alabama coast. This photo was taken from an altitude of about 230 miles. (NASA)

This image of Hurricane Wilma was taken at 8:23 a.m. CDT Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2005 by the crew aboard NASA’s international space station as the complex flew 222 miles above the storm. At the time, Wilma was the strongest Atlantic hurricane in history, with winds near 175 miles per hour. The storm was located in the Caribbean Sea, 340 miles southeast of Cozumel, Mexico. (NASA)

Hurricane Ivan fills this image over the northern Gulf of Mexico as the storm approached landfall on the Alabama coast Wednesday afternoon, Sept. 15, 2004. Ivan was reported to have sustained winds of 135 mph. (NASA)

This view of Hurricane Epsilon in the Atlantic Ocean was photographed on Dec. 3, 2005 by one of the crewmembers of Expedition 12 aboard the International Space Station. The orbital outpost was flying at an altitude of 190 nautical miles. Center point coordinates are 34.5 degrees north latitude and 44.4 degrees west longitude. (NASA)

This image of Hurricane Ivan, one of the strongest hurricanes on record, was taken Saturday from an altitude of about 230 miles by Astronaut Edward M. Fincke, NASA ISS science officer and flight engineer, looking out the window of the International Space Station on Sept. 11th, 2004. (NASA)

This close-up view of the eye of Hurricane Isabel was taken on Sept. 15th, 2003, by one of the Expedition 7 crewmembers onboard the International Space Station (NASA)

While not a true hurricane, this image from September 4, 2003 shows a beautifully-formed low-pressure system swirling off the southeastern coast of Greenland, illustrating the maxim that “nature abhors a vacuum.” The vacuum in this case was a region of low atmospheric pressure. In order to fill this void, air from a nearby high-pressure system moves in, in this case bringing clouds along for the ride. This huge system swirled over the Denmark Strait in between Greenland and Iceland. (Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC)

This close-up view of the eye of Hurricane Isabel was taken by one of the Expedition 7 crewmembers onboard the International Space Station (ISS). At the time this photo was taken, Sept. 13th, 2003, Isabel had reformed to a Category 5 storm, packing winds of 160 miles per hour. (NASA)

Hurricane Douglas, seen on July 23, 2002. Douglas had dropped back to category 1 status as it moved away from the Baja California Peninsula in the eastern Pacific Ocean. This image was acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Terra satellite on July 23. (Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC)

This image of Hurricane Ivan, one of the strongest hurricanes on record, was taken Saturday, Sept 11th, 2004 from an altitude of about 230 miles by Astronaut Edward M. Fincke, NASA ISS science officer and flight engineer, looking out the window of the International Space Station. At the time, Ivan was in the western Caribbean Sea and reported to have winds of 160 mph. (NASA)

Detail of the eye wall of Hurricane Ivan, as seen from the International Space Station on Sept. 11th, 2004. (NASA)

The MODIS instrument onboard NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this true-color image of Hurricane Isabel on September 14, 2003 at 17:55 UTC. In this image Isabel is located about 400 miles north of Puerto Rico and is packing maximum sustained winds near 155 mph. (Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC)

Detail of the eye wall of Hurricane Isabel, as seen from the International Space Station on Sept. 15th, 2003. (NASA)

Banding of surrounding clouds can be seen from the International Space Station as it passes over Hurrican Frances on Sept. 2nd, 2004 (NASA)

This view of Hurricane Isabel was taken by one of the Expedition 7 crewmembers onboard the International Space Station (ISS) on Sept. 13th, 2003. At the time this photo was taken, Isabel had reformed to a Category 5 storm, packing winds of 160 miles per hour. (NASA)

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS)instrument onboard NASA’s Terra satellite captured this true-color image of Hurricane Kate on October 4, 2003. At the time this image was taken Kate had sustained winds of 115 mph and was moving towards the west at 12 mph. (Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC)

This high-oblique panoramic view, recorded by a digital still camera using a 400mm lens, shows the eye of Hurricane Emily on July 16th, 2005. The image was captured by the crew of the International Space Station while the complex was over the southern Gulf of Mexico looking eastwardly toward the rising moon. At the time, Emily was a strengthening Category 4 hurricane with winds of nearly 155 miles per hour and moving west-northwestwardly over the northwest Caribbean Sea about 135 miles southwest of Kingston, Jamaica. (NASA)

One Response so far.

  1. Grey says:

    Just awesome !


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