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NASA satellites capture Hurricane Sandy's massive size

Date:
October 30, 2012
Source:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
Summary:
NASA's Aqua satellite captured a visible image Sandy's massive circulation. Sandy covers 1.8 million square miles, from the Mid-Atlantic to the Ohio Valley, into Canada and New England.

NASA's Aqua satellite captured a visible image Sandy's massive circulation on Oct. 29 at 18:20 UTC (2:20 p.m. EDT). Sandy covers 1.8 million square miles, from the Mid-Atlantic to the Ohio Valley, into Canada and New England.
Credit: NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team

NASA's Aqua satellite captured a visible image Sandy's massive circulation. Sandy covers 1.8 million square miles, from the Mid-Atlantic to the Ohio Valley, into Canada and New England.

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The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured a visible image Sandy's massive circulation on Oct. 29 at 18:20 UTC (2:20 p.m. EDT). Sandy covered 1.8 million square miles, from the Mid-Atlantic to the Ohio Valley, into Canada and New England. Sandy made landfall hours after the MODIS image was taken.

Sandy Was Still a Hurricane After Landfall

On Oct. 29, 2012 at 11 p.m. EDT, the center of Hurricane Sandy was just 10 miles (15 km) southwest of Philadelphia, Penn., near 39.8 North and 75.4 West. Sandy was still a hurricane with maximum sustained winds near 75 mph (120 kph) and moving northwest at 18 mph (30 kph). Sandy's minimum central pressure had risen to 952 millibars. The hurricane-force-winds extended 90 miles (150 km) east of the center of circulation. Tropical-storm-force winds, however, went much further, as far as 485 miles (780 km).

NASA's GOES Project created a "full-disk view" of NOAA's GOES satellite data, that captured a global view of Hurricane Sandy's birth to landfall. The animation of NOAA's GOES-13 and GOES-15 satellite observations were combined from Oct. 21-30, 2012 and showed the birth of Tropical Storm Sandy in the Caribbean Sea, the intensification and movement of Sandy in the Atlantic Ocean along the U.S. East Coast, and Hurricane Sandy make landfall in N.J. on Oct. 29 and move inland to Penn.

Sandy's Inland Movement on Oct. 29

At 2 a.m. EDT, on Oct. 29, Sandy's center was located just south of Lancaster, Penn. At 5 a.m. EDT, Sandy continued moving to the west-northwest at 15 knots (24 kph) and was located just 15 miles (24 km) east of York, Penn., and 90 miles (145 km) west of Philadelphia. Sandy was centered near 40.5 North and 77.0 West. Sandy's minimum central pressure continues to rise and was 960 millibars.

Sandy's sustained winds were near 65 mph. Tropical-storm-force winds extend almost 1,000 miles. According to Weather Channel, the winds are going to continue being a problem from the northeast into the Ohio Valley today. The strongest winds are being experienced now in the Great Lakes Region.

Widespread Damages

Hurricane Sandy has caused significant damage in New York City and along the Mid-Atlantic coast. Flooding has been reported from Maine to Va. During the morning hours on Oct. 29 (Eastern Daylight Time), nearly eight million people were without power this morning up and down the East coast. The Appalachian Mtns. received some heavy snow from western Md. down to Tenn. and N.C. As much as 26 inches of snow had fallen in Garrett County, Md. by the morning of Oct. 30. According to Reuters news, flooding along the U.S. East Coast was extensive.

Watches and Warnings in Effect on Oct. 29

According to the NOAA's Hydrometeorological Prediction Center (NOAA/HPC), there are high-wind warnings in effect including gale force winds over the coastal waters of the Mid-Atlantic States, New York and New England. Storm warnings are in effect for portions of the Mid-Atlantic coastal waters. Flood and flash flood watches and warnings are in effect over portions of the Mid-Atlantic and northeastern states.

NOAA's HPC forecast on Oct. 29 calls for Sandy to move in a "west-northwest motion with reduced forward speed is expected today into western Penn. with a turn north into western New York tonight, Oct. 30. The cyclone will move into Canada on Wed., Oct. 31. Steady weakening is forecast during the next 48 hours."

NOAA/HPC warns that gale-force winds will continue over parts of the Mid-Atlantic through New England on Oct. 29 and storm surge and tides can still cause normally dry areas along or near the coast to be flooded, especially during high tide.

Rain and Snowfall Forecasts from NOAA

NOAA/HPC forecasts large rainfall totals for many areas in Sandy's reach. Far northeastern N.C. could expect 3 to 6 inches, while 4 to 8 inches more are possible over the Mid-Atlantic States on Oct. 30. Both areas can see isolated higher totals. Between 1 and 3 inches are possible with up to 5 inches in the southern tier of New York state and northeastward through New England.

Snowfall between 2 and 3 feet are expected in the W.Va. mountains with higher totals through Oct. 30. Snowfall of 1 to 2 feet in the southwestern Va. and Ky. Mountains are expected, and between 12 and 18 inches along the N.C. and Tenn. Border and in western Md.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. The original article was written by Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "NASA satellites capture Hurricane Sandy's massive size." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 October 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121030143216.htm>.
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. (2012, October 30). NASA satellites capture Hurricane Sandy's massive size. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121030143216.htm
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center. "NASA satellites capture Hurricane Sandy's massive size." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121030143216.htm (accessed November 23, 2014).

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