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The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission has several cross-cutting application areas which contribute to and enhance our understanding of weather forecasting, disasters, ecology, health, water and agriculture and energy. Using advanced space-borne instruments, GPM measures light rain to heavy rain and falling snow, producing a near-global view of precipitation every 30 minutes. Through improved measurements of rain and snow, precipitation data from the GPM mission is used by a diverse range of applications and user communities at local to global scales to inform decision making and policy that directly benefits society. 


What are Applications? 

“Applications” refers to the use of mission data products in decision-making activities for societal benefit. Mission Applications take a satellite's data products and expands them into areas where they can help inform policy or decisions. 

Learn more about Applied Sciences at NASA

Who's Using GPM Data?

Learn about the different people and organizations that are using GPM and other NASA Earth data to help improve life around the world. 

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2022 GPM Mentorship Program


GPM Data for Decision Making

Are you using GPM satellite precipitation data in your work, or would you like to? Share your story with our team, or ask us any questions you may have using our contact form.

We also encourage you to get involved in GPM applications by attending an applications event or accessing the free and publicly available data in the data section of this site

  • Dalia Kirschbaum (NASA GSFC), GPM Mission Associate Deputy Project Scientist for Applications
  • Andrea Portier (NASA GSFC / SSAI), GPM Applications and Outreach Coordinator
  • Dorian Janney (NASA GSFC / ADNET), GPM Outreach Specialist
  • Jacob Reed (NASA GSFC / Telophase), GPM Web Developer

Applications Featured Resources

IMERG analysis of Hurricane Ian
On Sept. 30, 2022, Hurricane Ian was approaching South Carolina, which was one day after Ian finished its west-to-east crossing of Florida. NASA has been estimating Hurricane Ian's precipitation over land and ocean, which complements the array of detailed observations collected by NOAA and other agencies of Ian's impact over land.
GPM overpass of Hurricane Ian on Sept. 26, 2022
Hurricane Ian became one of the strongest hurricanes on record to strike Florida when it made landfall Wednesday, Sept. 28th, 2022, around 3:10 pm (EDT) as a Category 4 storm near Cayo Costa, FL, about 20 miles west-southwest of Punta Gorda on Florida’s southwest coast. This same area was hit hard by Hurricane Charley in 2004, which also made landfall as a strong Category 4 storm. Both storms passed over and were intensified by the deep, warm waters of the southeastern Gulf of Mexico. Ian originated from a tropical easterly wave that propagated westward off the coast of Africa across the
IMERG precipitation totals from Hurricane Ian
Hurricane Ian formed in the Caribbean Sea on Sept. 26, 2022. Ian intensified to Category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale by the time it made landfall in western Cuba early the next day. NASA's near real-time IMERG algorithm was used to estimate the precipitation from Ian during its formation and intensification. IMERG shows that Ian's largest rainfall accumulation so far, over 12 inches, occurred while it was only a tropical storm and not yet a hurricane. The National Hurricane Center provided an estimate of the distance that tropical storm-force winds extended from Ian's low-pressure
GPM overpass of Hurricane Fiona on Sept. 23, 2022.
After leaving the Caribbean, Hurricane Fiona became both the strongest and the first major hurricane of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season as it made its way northward through the western Atlantic. Fiona began as an African easterly wave that moved across the tropical Atlantic in the direction of the Caribbean. While still about 800 miles east of the Leeward Isles, this wave organized into a tropical depression on Sept.14th. Later that same day, the depression strengthened and became Tropical Storm Fiona. Fiona remained a moderate tropical storm as it passed through the Leeward Isles on the
IMERG precipitation estimates from Hurricane Fiona
In September 2022, Hurricane Fiona had impacts in the Caribbean, on Bermuda, and in Canada. NASA's satellites and science algorithms helped to monitor this hurricane in near real time.
GPM overpass of Typhoon Nanmadol
Super Typhoon Nanmadol became one of the strongest typhoons to threaten Japan since records began in 1951. Nanmadol began as a tropical disturbance, basically an area of active thunderstorms, on September 11th southeast of Iwo Jima about midway between Tokyo and Guam. After moving to the southwest for 2 days, this disturbance became better organized and formed into a depression on the 13th. The system then made a counterclockwise loop, moving first back to the northeast before turning back again towards the west. Over this time, the system slowly intensified, becoming Tropical Storm Nanmadol
Screenshot of mentors and participants (mentees) during the last session of the 2022 Mentorship Program.
The GPM Applications Team in collaboration with the University of Coimbra created the GPM Mentorship Program to support new users from established and underrepresented communities and provide tailored hands-on learning experiences in using GPM data for applications. The goal of the program is to provide an overview of using state-of-the-art satellite-based precipitation estimates, and to provide users their first experience of applying GPM data to support real-world problems. The 2022 initiative is the first edition of the mentorship program.
Screenshot of the High-Impact Weather Assessment Toolkit (HIWAT),
Bangladesh has a long history of deadly and costly storms. Because these storms are so localized, they can be notoriously difficult to forecast, especially without access to the most advanced weather prediction technology. Researchers have created a new tool to boost the country’s ability to forecast severe weather. The SERVIR program - a joint initiative of NASA, USAID, and leading geospatial organizations in Asia, Africa, and Latin America - and the Bangladesh Meteorological Department (BMD) recently launched the High-Impact Weather Assessment Toolkit (HIWAT), a web-based tool that
IMERG totals from twin cyclones in the Indian Ocean
Over the past several days, a relatively rare event occurred in the eastern Indian Ocean: the formation of “twin” tropical cyclones. Tropical Cylones Karim and Asani formed at nearly the exact same time (06:00 UTC and 06:30 UTC, 12:00 pm and 12:30 pm local time) on May 7 on opposite sides of the Equator. Karim officially formed first in the southern hemisphere (SH) followed immediately by Asani in the northern hemisphere (NH). At first glance, the cyclones appear to be mirror images of one another with Asani rotating counterclockwise in the NH and Karim rotating clockwise in the SH roughly
IMERG rainfall totals in South Africa, April 5 - 18, 2022.
An upper-level area of low pressure tapped into the warm waters of the South Indian Ocean to bring heavy rains and flooding to parts of South Africa during the second week of April. The event unfolded when an upper-level trough of low pressure embedded within the midlatitude westerlies traversed the southern part of Africa from west to east. As the trough approached the east coast of South Africa, an area of low pressure became detached from the main flow, this “cut off” low then drifted over the warm waters of the Agulhas Current, which channels warmer waters from the tropical Indian Ocean
IMERG Rainfall Totals from Australian :"Rain Bomb" in March 2022
The below animation shows surface rainfall estimates from NASA’s IMERG multi-satellite precipitation product for the week starting on Feb. 22, 2022 at 0000 UTC and ending on Feb. 28, 2022 at 2330 UTC. Areas shaded in blue and yellow show three-hour average snapshots of IMERG rain rates every half-hour overlaid on cloudiness (shown in white/gray) based on geosynchronous satellite infrared observations. Below the rain rates and cloudiness data, IMERG rainfall accumulations are shown in green and purple. Tropical Cyclone Anika’s track is shown with a gray line based on data from the U.S. Navy-Air
IMERG rainfall totals from the Nov. 2021 atmospheric river.
The Pacific Northwest coast saw two atmospheric rivers (ARs) bring heavy rains from Nov. 10-16, 2021, resulting in severe flooding, landslides, and damage to infrastructure in the British Columbia province of Canada. ARs are long, narrow corridors of water vapor that travel vast distances above the ocean from warm, tropical regions to higher latitudes, where they often release their moisture as rainfall when they reach land areas. While ARs occur across the globe, this year has been notable for several strong events that have impacted the Pacific Northwest coast. The two atmospheric rivers in
2021 average daily rainfall June, July August.
The Indian summer monsoon, also known as the southwest monsoon, falls within the South Asian monsoon and is the strongest and perhaps best-known of the world’s monsoons. During summer months when the Asian landmass heats up, warm, moist air flows northward from the Indian Ocean towards the Himalayas, bringing abundant showers and thundershowers to India. The summer monsoon is a regular event that occurs every year and is responsible for roughly 80% of India’s annual rainfall. The summer monsoon typically starts in early June, peaks in July and August and winds down during September and early
IMERG rainfall totals from recent atmospheric river.
The Pacific Northwest experienced a memorable series of storms in late Oct. 2021 as several low-pressure systems rolled in from the northeast Pacific Ocean. One of the systems was classified by meteorologists as a “bomb cyclone”, meaning that its central pressure (an indication of storm strength) had dropped particularly rapidly in a short time period. At its minimum pressure (highest strength), the system was reported by the National Weather Service to have had the lowest pressure of a system over the northeastern Pacific Ocean since reliable observations began in 1974. The system was notable
IMERG Comparison of Typhoon Mindulle and Hurricane Sam
From late Sept. through early Oct. 2021, two powerful storms churned over the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans: Typhoon Mindulle, which peaked as a Category 5 storm, and Hurricane Sam, a Category 4 hurricane and one of the longest-lived hurricane-strength storms on record over the Atlantic Ocean. While neither storm posed a direct threat to land, Mindulle brushed by eastern Japan, leaving heavy rainfall accumulations in the area near Tokyo. Despite the fact that neither storm made landfall, the storms’ slow-motion tracks across warm ocean waters allows an opportunity to observe how the strong winds
GPM overpass of Hurricane Nicholas
Although it only reached hurricane status for a brief period, Hurricane Nicholas made an impact on the northern Gulf Coast by bringing heavy rains to an area still recovering from the devastating effects of powerful Hurricane Ida, which made landfall in Louisiana just over 2 weeks earlier. Nicholas formed after a tropical wave passed over the Yucatan Peninsula and into the Bay of Campeche, providing a focus for shower and thunderstorm development. On the morning of Sunday September 12th, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) found that this area of storms had developed a closed circulation with
Hurricane Ida IMERG Totals
All eyes were on Hurricane Ida as it made landfall in Louisiana on Aug. 29, 2021, but many people were taken by surprise by the power of Hurricane Ida's remnants when they reached Virginia during the day on Sept.1 and New York City late at night on Sept. 1 into early morning on Sept. 2. The below animation shows the precipitation that fell during the entire lifecycle of Ida from before landfall in Louisiana through the impacts on New York City. Download this video (right-click -> "Save As") This animation uses data from the near real-time version of NASA's IMERG algorithm, a data product that
NASA/JAXA GPM Satellite Eyes Hurricane Ida Shortly Before Landfall
Hurricane Ida struck southeast Louisiana as a powerful Category 4 storm on Sunday, Aug. 29, 2021 - the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina’s landfall in 2005. Ida brought destructive storm surge, high winds, and heavy rainfall to the region, and left over 1 million homes and businesses without power, including the entire city of New Orleans. The NASA / JAXA GPM Core Observatory satellite flew over the eye of Ida shortly before landfall at 10:13 a.m. CDT (1513 UTC), capturing data on the structure and intensity of precipitation within the storm. This animation shows NASA's IMERG multi
IMERG Precipitation Anomalies
Climate change impacts all of us in various ways. Changes in soil moisture have a pronounced effect on agricultural production, which in turn impacts the food we grow to eat. Changes in precipitation patterns are leading to increases in drought in certain regions and causing flooding in others. All of these impacts are influenced by interactions among processes within the Earth system involving the atmosphere, ocean, land, ice, and life. These natural interactions, combined with human influences such as the release of greenhouse gases, serve to drive the climate system resulting in distinct
GOES Model of Earth's Climate
Climate researchers around the world are taking advantage of NASA satellite observations to help inform, improve, and enhance climate models. NASA data helps to predict the future of Earth's climate and improve the predictive capability of models. This gives decision-makers the tools they need to make better decisions on how we live, including understand the changing impacts of hurricanes and improving predictions of fire seasons. But how exactly does NASA data support climate modeling activities, and how does the data improve these models? We’re here to explain the inner workings of how NASA
GPM DPR overflight of Hurricane Henri 22 Aug 2021
In the North Atlantic, the tropical system known as Henri reached hurricane status on Saturday, August 21, 2021. At the time, it was approaching a landfall in New England. Between Friday and Sunday, Henri was observed three times by the Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) on the core satellite of NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission. The GPM satellite's first two flyovers of Henri occurred just 10 hours apart and revealed a remarkably unchanging structure that was being impacted by wind shear. A third overflight occurred a day later, when wind shear had abated and Henri
GPM Overpass of Tropical Cyclone Fred on August 16, 2021.
Tropical Storm Fred, the 6th named storm of the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season, began as a westward moving disturbance in the central Atlantic east of the Lesser Antilles. The system passed through the southern Leeward Islands during the early morning hours of August 10 but still lacked a well-defined center of circulation. Despite significant thunderstorm activity within the system, it wasn’t until late that evening, when the system was passing just south of Puerto Rico, that the National Hurricane Center (NHC) identified a well-defined circulation and upgraded the system to Tropical Storm
IMERG precipitation over China for July 17 to 28, 2021
During July 17 to 28, 2021, several storm systems brought heavy rain to parts of China and surrounding countries, while a nine-month-long drought persists in an adjacent part of China. NASA's multi-satellite precipitation algorithm has been monitoring this rainfall in near real-time, and the estimates are distributed to weather-forecasting agencies and disaster-monitoring organizations. This algorithm is called IMERG, the Integrated Multi-satellitE Retrievals for GPM. GPM is the NASA / JAXA Global Precipitation Measurement mission, which launched its Core Observatory satellite in 2014. Two
IMERG analysis of monsoon rainfall in India, July 2021
After a relatively quiet period of below normal activity that began in the latter part of June and extended into the first half of July, and which resulted in rainfall deficits over much of India, the South Asian monsoon surged to life last week, bringing heavy rains, widespread flooding and landslides. Among the hardest hit areas was the western state of Maharashtra, which extends from the central west coast of India inland. A key geographical feature along the west coast of India is the Western Ghats. This coastal mountain range runs roughly north-south for about 1000 miles along the west
Arizona GPM DPR Convective Storm 3D View 2021 July 15
There is a monsoon that occurs in the southwestern U.S. each summer, and it brought heavy rain to the deserts of Arizona this week. This monsoon is less well known than India's Summer Monsoon, but both monsoons have similar causes [1, 2, 3]. In western Mexico and the southern edge of the southwest U.S., most of the year's rain typically falls in just three months: June, July, and August. The region is shown in light blue in the below climate map, which shows where summer rainfall predominates (Figure 1). This seasonal pattern is known as the North American Monsoon. The map was generated using
IMERG Rainfall Totals from Cyclone Tauktae
NASA combined data from multiple satellites in the GPM Constellation to estimate precipitation rates and totals from Tropical Cyclone Tauktae in May 2021. The below animation shows precipitation rates (blue/yellow shading) and accumulations (green shading) at half-hourly intervals from May 12-19, 2021, derived from NASA's IMERG algorithm. Underneath the precipitation data, cloud cover is shown in shades of white/gray based on geosynchronous satellite infrared observations. On top of the precipitation data, the cyclone's approximate track is displayed based on estimates from the Joint Typhoon
World Resources Institute Ethiopia
NASA’s Earth observation data are used in a wide variety of ways to improve life for humans and other animals across the world every day. Our climate is changing, and these changes include differences in temperature and precipitation patterns around the globe. As you might imagine, these changes bring about both anticipated and unanticipated consequences that have a profound impact on people around the world. Many organizations are responding to the amazing yet complicated wealth of data that can be used to successfully monitor many aspects of our global environment. The World Resources
Caribou herd in the Yukon
Climate change increases need for global data The impacts of climate change are already having a profound effect on ecosystems. Changes in temperature and precipitation patterns affect species and communities in diverse ways, such as declines in species and species diversity, changing interactions between species, and modification of ecosystems. Effective ecosystem management is critical to maintaining and repairing the natural environments in order to reliably support human needs while conserving and sustaining ecological services and diversity. Imagine how a scientist studying the movement
Water next to a desert.
So Much Data, So Little Time NASA’s Earth-observing data are used daily in a wide variety of ways to improve life for humans and animals across the planet. Our climate is changing, and these changes are having a profound impact on communities and species in many ways. Changing extremes in precipitation and temperature are leading to a decline in species diversity, modification to ecosystems and animal habitats, as well as changing how some species interact with each other. To address this, many organizations are turning to the amazing yet complex wealth of Earth data, which can be used to
IMERG Precipitation Totals from Eastern Australia, March 16 - 23, 2021
During the week ending on March 23, 2021, two locations in Australia experienced unusually high rainfall totals. According to news reports a persistent system brought flooding rains to Australia's east coast from Brisbane to Sydney and points further south. The preliminary estimate from NASA's multi-satellite global precipitation analysis is that more than 24 inches fell just off the coast of Australia in 7 days with accumulations in coastal areas exceeding 16 inches. Near the Strzelecki Desert in central Australia, a storm system brought 8 inches of precipitation during the same 7-day period. Most of the rain fell during a 3-day period (0000 UTC on 20 March to 2359 UTC on 22 March).
IMERG Rainfall Rates and MUR Sea Surface Temperatures from the 2020 Hurricane Season
Forecasters predicted an above-normal hurricane season for 2020. They weren’t wrong. As the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season smashed records with an unprecedented 30 named storms, NASA’s Earth Applied Sciences Disasters Program stood up to the challenge. The Disasters Program helps leaders and responders at national, regional, and local levels leverage NASA’s technology and expertise to assess, predict, and understand disasters' impacts. The Disasters Program targets a wide range of hazards and disasters, and while NASA is not an operational response agency, the agency offers access to unique
IMERG Sees Winter Storms Impact the Southern U.S.
In mid-February 2021, large areas of the Continental United States experienced extreme cold temperatures as a result of a strong Arctic high pressure system. The cold temperatures were accompanied by several pulses of precipitation over the Southeast US through the mid-Atlantic, as well as the Pacific Northwest. The combination of cold temperatures and precipitation resulted in widespread power outages to millions of people in Texas, Kentucky, West Virginia, and Oregon, among other states.
IMERG Captures Rainfall from Tropical Cyclone Ana in Fiji
NASA combined data from multiple satellites to estimate the rainfall from Tropical Cyclone Ana in the Southwest Pacific Ocean amid an ongoing Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) event. The Madden-Julian Oscillation is a 20 to 90 day pattern of alternating wet and dry conditions that often begins in the tropical Indian Ocean and moves eastward into the Pacific. This animation shows rainfall rates (blue/yellow shading) and rainfall accumulations (green shading) at half-hourly intervals from January 26 - February 2, 2021, using NASA's IMERG algorithm, overlaid on shades of white/gray from NOAA
IMERG Rainfall Total from Week of Jan 25 2021
NASA combined data from multiple satellites to estimate the rainfall from an "atmospheric river" event over the U.S. West Coast in near real-time at half-hourly intervals from January 25 - 29, 2021. Atmospheric rivers are long, narrow corridors of water vapor that can lead to heavy precipitation when they encounter land. This animation shows estimated rainfall rates in blue and yellow shading and total rainfall accumulations in green shading, from NASA's IMERG algorithm, overlaid on shades of white and gray from NOAA infrared satellite data which shows cloudiness. On January 25, 2021, a low
IMERG Total from Cyclone Gati
On November 22, 2020, Cyclone Gati became the strongest storm to hit Somalia since satellite records began five decades ago. Gati made landfall with maximum sustained winds of 170 kilometers (105 miles) per hour, a category 2 storm on the Saffir-Simpson scale. The storm brought more than a year’s worth of rain to the region in two days. Local authorities report at least eight people were killed and thousands have been displaced. The map above shows rainfall accumulation from November 21-23, 2020. These data are remotely-sensed estimates that come from the Integrated Multi-Satellite Retrievals
IMERG Rainfall Totals from Eta & Iota, November 1 - 18
The record-breaking 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, aided by the ongoing La Niña, is officially the most active Atlantic hurricane season on record, surpassing the 2005 season in the total number of named storms with 30 to date. Incredibly, the latest storm Iota wasn’t just another named storm, but a powerful Category 5 hurricane and the strongest storm of the season. It was also only the 2nd Category 5 storm to occur in the month of November on record, the other being in 1932. The warm waters of the Caribbean continue to serve as a breeding ground for late-season storms this season. Iota
Landslide Risk in Central America
On November 3, 2020, Hurricane Eta made landfall as one of the most powerful hurricanes to hit Central America in years. The category 4 storm destroyed hundreds of homes, killed more than 100 people, and brought torrential rains that triggered large and numerous landslides in Guatemala and Honduras. Less than two weeks later, Hurricane Iota—an even more powerful category 4 storm—nearly retraced Eta’s path. Within hours of Eta’s landfall and flooding rains, researchers at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center worked to predict landslides and map the storm’s aftermath. One team assessed potential
GPM Overpass of Hurricane Eta Nov. 11 2020
After a long and meandering journey over Central America, across central Cuba, and through the Florida Keys, Eta, the 28th named storm and 12th hurricane of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, wound up nearly stationary as a moderate tropical storm in the southeastern Gulf of Mexico just north of the western tip of Cuba on the morning of November 10th. Before long however, a deep layer trough located over the western third of the US began to shift eastward, and by the afternoon of the 10th, it started to pull Eta back towards the north and the west coast of the Florida peninsula. As it did so
Hurricane Eta over Florida
After striking the northeast coast of Nicaragua as a powerful Category 4 storm back on November 3, Hurricane Eta weakened rapidly over Central America but still brought major flooding and triggered numerous landslides that so far have resulted in at least 250 fatalities across the region, according to media reports. Eta was down to a tropical depression when the center re-emerged over the northwestern Caribbean on the evening of November 5. An upper-level trough over the Gulf of Mexico first steered Eta northeastward towards Cuba on the 6th. Because it was disorganized after its trek across
Hurricane Eta IMERG Screenshot
The extremely active 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, aided by the ongoing La Niña, continues on. After Hurricane Zeta made landfall along the northern part of the Gulf Coast, yet another hurricane has arisen - Hurricane Eta, the strongest of the season. Like Zeta, Eta also formed in the Caribbean, where sea surface temperatures are still running quite warm at around 29° C, almost a full degree above average and well above the typical 26° C needed for tropical cyclone development. But while Zeta turned north into the Gulf of Mexico, Eta moved westward where it delivered powerful winds and
GPM Eta Screenshot
The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Core Observatory satellite flew over Hurricane Eta at 11:41 p.m. CT on Tuesday, Nov. 3 (0541 UTC Wednesday, Nov. 4). GPM observed the storm’s rainfall with its two unique science instruments: the GPM Microwave Imager (GMI) and Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR). As the visualization shows, the instruments observed a large swath of heavy precipitation extending to the north and east of the hurricane’s center, which matched earlier forecasts that called for particularly heavy rainfall across the storm’s path. These two- and three-dimensional
GPM Overpass of Hurricane Zeta on 10/28/20
As Hurricane Zeta moves towards landfall on the U.S. Gulf Coast, NASA has eyes on the storm with an array of Earth-observing instruments and stands ready to aid affected communities with critical data and analysis. Zeta is following a path similar to Hurricane Delta, which after crossing the Yucatan Peninsula made its way across the Gulf of Mexico and struck the Louisiana coast as a Category 2 hurricane on October 9. If Zeta makes landfall as expected along the northern Gulf Coast, it will become the 7th named storm to do so in this record-breaking season, following Tropical Storm Cristobal
GPM overpass of Hurricane Delta
The 2020 Atlantic hurricane season will go down as one of the most active seasons on record, currently second only to the incredible 2005 season in terms of the number of named storms. The 2020 season is only the second time in recorded history (the other being 2005) that the Greek alphabet has been used because the number of named storms has exceeded the number of regular names on the list. Another interesting aspect of the 2020 season has been the number of storms that have struck the northern Gulf Coast. So it is no surprise that the latest storm, Hurricane Delta, would also find its way to
Alaska Rainfall 2019 and 2020
NASA's multi-satellite precipitation algorithm, known as IMERG, is a tool that can help us understand recent fluctuations in Alaska's wildfires. In the summer of 2020, wildfires burned fewer acres in Alaska than in any other year during the past 10 years. In contrast, wildfires burned a record number of acres in Alaska in the summer of 2019. The image below shows the locations of satellite-detected fires and precipitation during the last two weeks of June for both years. The above image shows IMERG rainfall totals overlaid with fire hot spot detections from the Visible Infrared Imaging
IMERG Rainfall Totals from Medicane Ianos
From September 14th - 20th, 2020, NASA’s IMERG algorithm estimated the rainfall from a Mediterranean cyclone with tropical-like characteristics, commonly known as a “Medicane”, which flooded parts of Greece. Medicanes typically appear once or twice a year and are similar to tropical storms in that both have a symmetric structure, a warm core, a clearly visible eye, and winds of at least tropical-storm strength. This particular storm system, dubbed "Ianos" by the National Observatory of Athens, led to media reports of flooding throughout the islands of Kefalonia and Zakynthos off the western
IMERG totals from hurricane sally
The northern Gulf Coast has seen its share of storms this busy hurricane season. At the end of August, then Tropical Storm Marco brought heavy rains to parts of the Florida Panhandle while western Louisiana took a direct hit from the much more powerful Category 4 Hurricane Laura. Now, just over 3 weeks since Laura made landfall, the northern Gulf Coast was struck again, this time by Hurricane Sally. Though not as powerful as Laura, the still rather strong Sally behaved more like Marco. But, while Marco was largely sheared apart with most of the rain well northeast of the center as it slowed
IMERG Rainfall from Typhoons Bavi, Maysak and Haishen
From August 22 through September 7, 2020, NASA’s IMERG algorithm estimated rainfall from three typhoons as they passed over the Pacific Ocean, Japan, and Korea. According to NOAA's records, this was the only time since records have been kept starting in 1945 that the Korean peninsula saw three landfalling typhoons in a single year, let alone in two weeks. Each of the three typhoons--Bavi, Maysak, and Haishen--reached the equivalent of “major hurricane” status, meaning Category 3 or above on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane-intensity scale (shown here as a red in the hurricane track) along their
IMERG rainfall from the Pakistan Floods 2020
In the last week of August 2020, Pakistan's largest city, Karachi, received over 8 inches of rainfall according to NASA's IMERG dataset, causing destructive flooding in the region. The amount of rain that fell that week is roughly equivalent to the amount that Karachi typically receives in an entire year, based on IMERG's 19-year global climatology. In a typical year, most of Karachi's rain will fall in July and August, but the rainfall during the week of August 23rd was unusually heavy. The top panel of the three panels in this image shows the depth of the 7-day rainfall accumulation in
IMERG Rainfall Totals from Hurricanes Marco and Laura
The northern Gulf Coast, specifically Louisiana, saw two tropical cyclones make landfall in the same week just days apart. The two systems, however, could not have been more different when they arrived. Despite forming a day later, Marco was the first system to make landfall on the Gulf Coast. Marco originated from a tropical easterly wave that was moving from the central to the western Caribbean. After becoming a tropical depression (TD) on the 20th of August, TD #14 turned northwestward the following day as it approached the coast of Central America and moved into the northwest Caribbean
GPM Overpass of Hurricane Laura 8/27/20
After crossing western Cuba, Tropical Storm Laura emerged into the Gulf of Mexico where warm water, low wind shear and a moist environment made conditions ideal for intensification. As it made its way through the Gulf of Mexico Laura strengthened - from a category 1 hurricane with sustained winds of 75 mph on the morning of Tuesday August 25th, to a powerful category 4 storm, with sustained winds of 150 mph on the evening of Wednesday August 26th - an increase of 75 mph in just 36 hours. At this point Laura was nearing the coast of western Louisiana, and made landfall near Cameron, Louisiana
GPM Overpass of Hurricane Laura 8/26/20 10:00pm CT
Hurricane Laura began as a tropical depression on August 21st near the U.S. Virgin Islands, and over the next several days rapidly intensified to a dangerous category 4 hurricane at it moved towards the U.S. Gulf Coast. Laura made landfall as strong category 4 hurricane near Cameron, Louisiana shortly after midnight on August 27, 2020, bringing extreme rainfall, storm surge, and winds up to 150 mph. The NASA / JAXA GPM Core Observatory satellite flew over Hurricane Laura shortly before it made landfall at 10:00pm CT on Wednesday, August 26th, then again at 7:42am CT on Thursday, August 27th
Hurricane Laura on August 27, 2020
Update on August 28, 2020: During its approach to Louisiana, Hurricane Laura dramatically intensified from Category 2 to 4 (105 mph to 150 mph) between at 1AM and 7PM Central Time (CDT) on August 26, 2020. In the updated movie below, the precipitation falling from Laura is shown through 10:30PM CDT, August 27, as estimated by NASA's IMERG algorithm. To open the animation in a separate window, click here. On August 26, Laura became the first North Atlantic hurricane to reach "major hurricane" status this year, meaning that it reached category 3 on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane-intensity scale
Hurricane Isaias Impacts the US East Coast
From July 29 to August 5, 2020, NASA’s IMERG algorithm observed tropical storm Isaias’ rainfall over the Caribbean and large parts of the Eastern US. This animation shows the IMERG rain rates in green shading as Isaias tracked from the tropical Atlantic into the Caribbean, then northward along the Atlantic coast and into New England. The yellow line shows the location of Isaias' low-pressure center, as tracked by the National Hurricane Center and smoothed in time here for the animation.
IMERG Hurricane Hanna 7-27-20 cropped
Hanna formed from a westward propagating tropical easterly wave that entered the southeast corner of the Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday July 21st. The wave provided a focus for shower and thunderstorm activity, which then led to the formation of an area of low pressure over the central Gulf of Mexico. The National Hurricane Center (NHC) found that this low had developed a closed circulation by the evening of Wednesday July 22nd, making it Tropical Depression #8. Over the next 24 hours, the depression slowly organized and intensified over the central Gulf before reaching tropical storm intensity on
GPM Hurricane Douglas 7-25-20
Hurricane Douglas continued to approach the Hawaiian islands during this GPM overpass early in the morning (02:11 UTC) of July 25, 2020. Douglas had previously strengthened to a Category 4 hurricane the day before, but had substantially weakened over cooler waters throughout the day. Regardless, the GMI and DPR instruments recorded rain rates near 50 millimeters/hour (~2 inches/hour) near Douglas` center. The Central Pacific Hurricane Center advised residents of Hawaii to expect hurricane-strength winds and rainfall starting Saturday evening and lasting through Monday. View fullscreen in STORM
IMERG rainfall totals from Japan, July 3 - 9 2020
From July 3-9, 2020, NASA’s IMERG algorithm continued to observe the heavy precipitation that fell as part of the seasonal Meiyu-Baiu rains (“plum rains”) in east Asia. Weekly totals reached their regional maxima over the island of Kyushu in southern Japan. About half of the island of Kyushu received over 45 cm (~18 inches) of rain. The majority of Honshu, Japan’s main island, as well as Shikoku to its south, were also impacted by the rains, receiving from 10-25 cm, depending on the location. Additionally, large areas of eastern China were also covered by the plum rains during this weekly
IMERG rainfall totals from Japan, June 29 - July 5, 2020
This animation shows NASA IMERG rain rates (blue shading) and accumulations (green shading) near Kyushu island, in the southwest of Japan from June 29 - July 5, 2020. Devastating floods and landslides swept through parts of Kyushu on July 4, 2020, resulting in over 40 deaths and orders for hundreds of thousands of people to evacuate their homes according to media reports. Download video (right-click -> Save As) The rains that triggered the flooding occurred in the context of the Meiyu-Baiu rainy season, which arrives in east Asia every year from June to mid-July. “Meiyu” and “Baiu” are the
Farmer in a field in El Salvador
To reduce risks from natural disasters and build climate resilience, decision makers are using NASA Earth observations to develop index-based insurance products and protect low-income customers in Central America, especially in the region known as the Dry Corridor.
Hurricane Forecasting Screenshot
The powerful hurricane that struck Galveston, Texas on September 8, 1900, killing an estimated 8,000 people and destroying more than 3,600 buildings, took the coastal city by surprise. This video looks at advances in hurricane forecasting in the 120 years since, with a focus on the contributions from weather satellites. This satellite technology has allowed us to track hurricanes – their location, movement and intensity. “One of the dramatic impacts is that satellite data keeps an eye on the target," especially over unpopulated areas such as oceans, said JPSS Director Greg Mandt. “We’re sort...
Andrea Portier
Meet Andrea Portier. By day, Portier is an application and outreach coordinator for the Global Precipitation Measurement Mission (GPM). By night — well, when she’s not at work — Portier can be found exploring local national parks and taking community classes. Portier spends her time honing her communication skills to help user communities understand GPM data and apply it to the real-world issues they face. We chatted with Portier to learn how she communicates complex ideas to diverse audiences, why her other career choice would be a wilderness therapy guide, and what advice she would give to...
GPM Overpass of Hurricane Dorian
Tropical cyclones, known as hurricanes in the western hemisphere, can bring damaging high winds, storm surge, and flooding rainfall to the coastal communities they hit. Satellite instruments - and the detailed near real-time atmospheric data that they provide - have revolutionized the way we see hurricanes and other disasters as they happen. But it’s about more than just seeing. NASA, working with counterparts at NOAA, FEMA, and elsewhere are sharing ever more precise data to aid local communities in coping with disasters. With better information, emergency responders have the tools to make...
Cyclone Amphan IMERG Rainfall Totals
On May 16, 2020, NASA / JAXA's GPM Core Observatory satellite observed the early stages of Tropical Cyclone Amphan as it tracked north over the Bay of Bengal. The below GPM overpass shows precipitation within Cyclone Amphan a day before it explosively intensified into a category 4-equivalent cyclone. Even at this early stage, Amphan produced heavy rain rates near its center and to its west and southwest. View fullscreen in STORM Event Viewer NASA monitored the heavy rain associated with Tropical Cyclone Amphan as it made landfall at 0900 UTC (2:30 PM local time) on May 20, 2020. Landfall...
Typhoon Vongfong IMERG Rainfall Totals
The first typhoon of the season, Vongfong, struck the central Philippines this past week (where it is known as Ambo) as a strong category 2 storm, bringing strong winds and locally heavy rainfall. Vongfong formed into a tropical depression in the southern Philippine Sea west of Palau on Sunday May 10th from a disturbance that had been slowly making its way westward over the past several days. After becoming a depression, the system moved northward toward the central Philippine Sea and slowly began to intensify. Then, on the 12th when it reached tropical storm intensity, Vongfong’s northward...
GPM Earth Day 2020 Banner
On April 22, 2020, people around the world will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, embracing our commitment towards understanding the planet’s environmental processes and protecting it for future generations. In support of this global event, NASA is highlighting the agency’s contributions to the environment with a week of online events, stories, and resources.
Field in Pakistan
Download this video from the NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio Today, India is among the world’s most water-scarce countries. This means that it does not have enough freshwater resources to meet the needs of all the people who live there. Mismanagement of water resources have largely contributed to the country’s limited water supplies. A growing competition over finite water resources will have serious implications for Indian farmers, as well as India’s food security. More than 70% of India’s population rely on agriculture as a source of livelihood. Even more so, an estimated 82% of...
Farmers looking at an App
Unexpected shocks from natural hazards can affect populations throughout the globe, threatening sustainable development and resilience. However, the impacts of these events, such as extreme precipitation or drought, disproportionately affect the developing world where individuals often are not insured and live and work in conditions that leave them vulnerable to natural disasters. This can lead to significant economic and environmental challenges if preventive measures or mitigating measures are not taken in time. To reduce risks from natural disasters and build climate resilience, decision...
GPM Overpass of Cyclone Harold from April 6th, 2020
Video credit: Greg Shirah, Kel Elkins, Alex Kekesi (NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio). For more information or to download this public domain video, go to: https://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/4812#29226 A Category 4 cyclone, the most powerful yet of 2020, made landfall on the South Pacific nation of Vanuatu on Monday, not long before this GPM overpass from April 6th, 2020 at 1:41 UTC. Tropical Cyclone Harold developed from a low pressure system that was observed to the east of Papua New Guinea last week, and has tracked to the southeast, where it has already caused flooding and loss of life...
IMERG rainfall totals from Australia in November 2019
Droughts and dry, arid conditions are naturally occurring phenomena in Australia. Such an environment is conducive to wild fires, which are started mainly by lightning and can occur throughout the year, but typically emerge between October and April and are most prevalent during the Southern Hemisphere summer; they are part of the seasonal cycle in Australia. However, some years are worse than others, and the 2019-2020 wild fire season was especially bad. It has been estimated that upwards of 46 million acres were burned, or roughly the size of the entire state of Washington. In terms of area...
Extratropical Storm Dennis, February 15, 2020
Storm Dennis is an extratropical cyclone that developed over the continental United States before undergoing explosive intensification as it crossed into the North Atlantic. On February 15 shortly after this GPM overpass, Dennis reached its minimum central pressure of 920 mb, which is reported to be the second-lowest on record for a North Atlantic winter storm. The eye can be seen south of Iceland, while rain bands to the south caused severe flooding across the British Isles. Text & Visualization by Jason West (NASA / KBR)
Landslide Risk in High Mountain Asia
More frequent and intense rainfall events due to climate change could cause more landslides in the High Mountain Asia region of China, Tibet and Nepal, according to the first quantitative study of the link between precipitation and landslides in the region. The model shows landslide risk for High Mountain Asia increasing in the summer months in the years 2061-2100, thanks to increasingly frequent and intense rainfall events. Summer monsoon rains can destabilize steep mountainsides, triggering landslides. Credits: NASA's Earth Observatory/Joshua Stevens High Mountain Asia stores more fresh...
Rain Brought Brief Relief to Australia
For much of the 2019-2020 austral summer, plumes of bushfire smoke have billowed from southeastern Australia in such large amounts that the ground was barely visible in satellite images. In mid-January, some of those plumes were finally quelled by a few days of much-needed rainfall.
Banner for the GPM Disease Initiative
Vector-borne diseases are responsible for over 17% of all the infectious diseases globally. Many of these diseases are preventable through protective measures, provided local authorities are aware of the potential outbreaks of the responsible vectors. Vectors are living organisms that are able to transmit diseases between humans or from animals to humans. These diseases include but are not limited to cholera, malaria, dengue fever, Zika, schistosomiasis, and West Nile fever.
Typhoon Kammuri Hits the Central Phiippines
While the Atlantic hurricane season officially ended on November 30th, Typhoon Kammuri (known as Tisoy in the Philippines), which recently struck the central Philippines as a powerful Category 4 typhoon, is a reminder that the Pacific typhoon season is not yet over. In fact, while typhoon season does peak from around June through November, similar to the Atlantic, typhoons can occur throughout the year in the Pacific. Kammuri first formed into a tropical depression from an area of low pressure on the 25th of November north of Micronesia in the west central Pacific about 500 miles southeast of Guam.
GPM Data Mitigates Landslide Risks in Bangladesh
Camp managers and other local officials overseeing Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh are now incorporating NASA satellite observations into their decision making in order to reduce the risk to refugees from landslides and other natural hazards. Information like daily rain totals can help inform how to lay out refugee camps and store supplies. More than 740,000 Rohingya refugees have fled to Bangladesh since August 2017. Many of them have sought shelter in camps located in the hilly countryside, where landslide risk may be the greatest. Increasing this danger is Bangladesh’s intense monsoon season. Approximately 80 percent of Bangladesh's yearly rain falls in just five months, from June to October, bringing with it an increased risk of flash flooding and landslides.
Using the IMERG Long-term Precipitation Data for Applications
A long precipitation data set like the new GPM IMERG V06 product is valuable for many applications and for decision-making. Accurate and reliable precipitation records are not only crucial to understanding trends and variability but also for water management resources and food security, ecological management, and weather, climate and hydrological forecasting. Here we present a few highlights showcasing how GPM IMERG is helping a variety of end users make decisions that will benefit society for years to come. GPM IMERG Data Used for Wind Energy Map of average precipitation in north-central...
Typhoon Hagibis Brings Heavy Rains to Japan
Typhoon Hagibis, a once powerful super typhoon, struck the main Japanese island of Honshu over the weekend, bringing very heavy rains and widespread flooding. Hagibis formed into a tropical storm on the 5th of October from a tropical depression that originated from a westward moving tropical wave north of the Marshall Islands. At first, Hagibis strengthened steadily becoming a typhoon about 24 hours after becoming a tropical storm. But, then on the 7th, Hagibis underwent a remarkable rapid intensification cycle and quickly intensified into a super typhoon with sustained winds estimated at 160 mph by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) less than 24 hours after becoming a minimal typhoon.
GPM observes Hurricane Dorian lashing Florida
Download in high resolution from the NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio GPM captured Dorian at 10:41 UTC (6:41 am EDT) on the 4th of September when the storm was moving north-northwest parallel to the coast of Florida about 90 miles due east of Daytona Beach. Three days earlier, Dorian had struck the northern Bahamas as one of the most powerful Category 5 hurricanes on record in the Atlantic with sustained winds of 185 mph. Weakening steering currents allowed the powerful storm to ravage the northern Bahamas for 2 full days. During this time, Dorian began to weaken due to its...
GPM Observes Hurricane Dorian Over Bahamas
Download in high resolution from the NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio. The NASA / JAXA Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Core Observatory flew over Hurricane Dorian on September 1st (5:22pm ET / 21:22 UTC) as the storm was directly over Abaco Island in The Bahamas. The satellite captured data on rainfall rates within the storm as it flew over using its Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) and GPM Microwave Imager (GMI). In this animation the multi-satellite GPM IMERG product is shown first to illustrate rainfall rates prior to the overpass. When the camera zooms in data...
Hurricane Dorian Brings Heavy Rain to Bahamas
In addition to the powerful winds that have raked the northern Bahamas over the past few days, Hurricane Dorian’s slow motion has brought very heavy rainfall to the islands as well. Dorian first formed into a tropical depression on the 24th of August about 800 miles east southeast of Barbados in the Lesser Antilles from an area of low pressure; the depression was quickly upgraded to a minimal tropical storm and named Dorian by the National Hurricane Center (NHC) later in the day. As Dorian made its way westward under the influence of a high pressure ridge to the north, it was held in check...
IMERG Measures Rainfall in Hurricane Dorian
UPDATE 9/9/19: On Monday morning, September 9, Hurricane Dorian was a post-tropical storm after a mid-latitude weather front and cold seas had altered its tropical characteristics over the weekend. On Saturday and Sunday, Hurricane Dorian struck eastern Canada, causing wind damage and bringing heavy rainfall. According to the Associated Press, a peak of 400,000 people were without power in Nova Scotia, Canada, because of Dorian. This graphic shows precipitation that fell during the almost two-week period from August 27 to the early hours of September 9. The near-realtime rain estimates come...
Rain Patterns During the Alaska Wildfires
NASA's satellite-based estimate of global precipitation can provide valuable information to officials monitoring the many wildfires in Alaska this summer. Wildfires occur in Alaska each summer, but July 2019 is shaping up to be a particularly active month. Few rain gauges exist in the large tracts of Alaskan wilderness, but wildfires unchecked can spread to populated areas within the state. Satellite-based precipitation estimates are particularly valuable here because of precipitation's relationship to wildfire hazard. The movie shows NASA's IMERG precipitation estimates for May 1 through July...
5 Year Anniversary of Hurricane Arthur
TRMM overpass of Hurricane Arthur from July 3, 2014. View fullscreen in STORM Event Viewer June marks the official start of the Atlantic hurricane season. And although strong tropical cyclones are rare in June in the Atlantic, it will soon be the 5-year anniversary of Hurricane Arthur, which became a tropical depression in very late June 2014 before hitting the Outer Banks of North Carolina as a Category 2 hurricane in early July. As with most storms early in the season, Arthur formed not from a tropical wave moving off the coast of Africa but from an old frontal boundary that stalls off the...
2019 Hurricane Season Banner
NASA has a unique and important view of hurricanes around the planet. Satellites and aircraft watch as storms form, travel across the ocean and sometimes, make landfall. After the hurricanes have passed, the satellites and aircraft see the aftermath of hurricanes, from downed forests to mass power loss.
GPM Catches Typhoon Yutu Making Landfall
NASA's GPM Core observatory satellite captured an image of Super Typhoon Yutu when it flew over the powerful storm just as the center was striking the central Northern Mariana Islands north of Guam. Early Thursday, Oct. 25 local time, Super Typhoon Yutu crossed over the U.S. commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. It was the equivalent of a Category 5 hurricane. The National Weather Service in Guam said it was the strongest storm to hit any part of the U.S. this year. Download this video in high resolution from the NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio Download video without...
Dive Into a 360-View of Hurricane Maria
Two days before Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, the NASA/JAXA Global Precipitation Measurement Core Observatory satellite captured a 3D view of the 2017 storm. At the time Maria was a category 1 hurricane. The 3-D view reveals the processes inside the hurricane that would fuel the storm’s intensification to a category 5 storm within 24 hours. For the first time in 360 degrees, this data visualization takes you inside the hurricane. The precipitation satellite has an advanced radar that measures both liquid and frozen water. The brightly colored dots show areas of rainfall, where green...
GPM Flies Over Tropical Cyclone Florence
Download in High Resolution from the NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio GPM passed over Tropical Storm Florence on September 7, 2018. As the camera moves in on the storm, DPR's volumetric view of the storm is revealed. A slicing plane moves across the volume to display precipitation rates throughout the storm. Shades of green to red represent liquid precipitation. Frozen precipitation is shown in cyan and purple. NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core observatory satellite flew over Tropical Storm Florence on September 7, 2018. At that time, the storm was...
NASA Rainfall Data and Global Fire Weather
The Global Fire WEather Database (GFWED) integrates different weather factors influencing the likelihood of a vegetation fire starting and spreading. It is based on the Fire Weather Index (FWI) System, which tracks the dryness of three general fuel classes, and the potential behavior of a fire if it were to start. Each day, FWI values are calculated from global weather data, including satellite rainfall data from the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission.
Using Precipitation Data to Track Cholera
Diarrheal diseases such as cholera continue to be a public health threat. Prediction of an outbreak of diarrheal disease, specifically cholera, following a natural disaster remains a challenge, especially in regions lacking basic safe civil infrastructure such as water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH). The underlying mechanism of a cholera outbreak is associated with disruption in the human access to safe WASH infrastructure that results in the population using unsafe water containing pathogenic vibrios. Presence and abundance of Vibrio cholerae, the causative agent of cholera, are related to modalities of the environment and regional weather as well as the climate systems.
Help NASA Create the Largest Landslide Database
Landslides cause thousands of deaths and billions of dollars in property damage each year. Surprisingly, very few centralized global landslide databases exist, especially those that are publicly available. Now NASA scientists are working to fill the gap—and they want your help collecting information.
Modeling Landslide Threats in Near Realtime
For the first time, scientists can look at landslide threats anywhere around the world in near real-time, thanks to satellite data and a new model developed by NASA. The model, developed at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, estimates potential landslide activity triggered by rainfall. Rainfall is the most widespread trigger of landslides around the world. If conditions beneath Earth's surface are already unstable, heavy rains act as the last straw that causes mud, rocks or debris — or all combined — to move rapidly down mountains and hillsides. A new model has been...
GPM Sees Powerful Winter Storm Grayson
Powerful Coastal Storm Brings Snow, Extreme Cold, Wind and Blizzard Conditions to the East Coast View an interactive 3D visualization of GPM data from Winter Storm Grayson in STORM Event Viewer Mobile version Cold Artic air has been keeping the vast majority of the country east of the Rockies in the deep freeze over the past week. Now a powerful coastal storm is working its way up the East Coast bringing a mixture of snow, freezing rain, high winds and blizzard conditions from as far south as Florida all the way up into Maine with blizzard warnings in effect along the coast from North Carolina...
GPM Catches Hurricane Nate's Landfall
NASA's GPM satellite helped track Nate's progress through the Gulf of Mexico and also captured Nate's landfall on the north central Gulf Coast. This animation shows instantaneous rainrate estimates from NASA's Integrated Multi-satellitE Retrievals for GPM or IMERG product over North America and the surrounding waters beginning on Thursday October 5th when Nate first became a tropical storm near the northeast coast of Nicaragua in the western Caribbean until its eventual landfall on the northern Gulf Coast on Sunday October 8th.
Intense Hurricanes Seen From Space
In 2017, we have seen four Atlantic storms rapidly intensify with three of those storms - Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria - making landfall. When hurricanes intensify a large amount in a short period, scientists call this process rapid intensification. This is the hardest aspect of a storm to forecast and it can be most critical to people's lives. While any hurricane can threaten lives and cause damage with storm surges, floods, and extreme winds, a rapidly intensifying hurricane can greatly increase these risks while giving populations limited time to prepare and evacuate.
GPM Sees Hurricanes Maria and Jose
GPM passed over both Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Jose on September 18th, 2017. As the camera moves in on the Maria, DPR's volumetric view of the storm is revealed. A slicing plane moves across the volume to display precipitation rates throughout the storm. Shades of green to red represent liquid precipitation extending down to the ground. The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission shows the rainfall distribution for two major storms churning in the Atlantic and Caribbean basins. The visualization shows Hurricane Jose as it continues to slowly move northward off the US East Coast east...
Using NASA Satellite Data to Predict Malaria Outbreaks
In the Peruvian Amazon, the Anopheles darlingi mosquito is most responsible for spreading malaria. With funding from NASA's Applied Sciences Program, scientists are turning to the agency’s fleet of Earth-observing satellites to develop a system that uses satellite and other data to help forecast malaria outbreaks at the household level months in advance and prevent them from happening. Credits: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center / Joy Ng In the Amazon Rainforest, few animals are as dangerous to humans as mosquitos that transmit malaria. The tropical disease can bring on high fever, headaches...
GPM Examines Hurricane Irma
The GPM core observatory satellite had an exceptional view of hurricane Irma's eye when it flew above it on September 5, 2017 at 12:52 PM AST (1652 UTC). This visualization shows a rainfall analysis that was derived from GPM's Microwave Imager (GMI) and Dual-Frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) data. Irma was approaching the Leeward Islands with maximum sustained winds of about 178 mph (155 kts). This made Irma a dangerous category five hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane wind scale. Intense rainfall is shown within Irma's nearly circular eye. This 3-D cross-section through Irma's eye was...
Hurricane Irma's Heat Engine Exposed
At 1 PM EDT (1700 UTC) on September 5, 2017, the radar on the Global Precipitation Measuring Mission (GPM) satellite captured this 3D view of the heat engine inside of category-5 Hurricane Irma. Under the central ring of clouds that circles the eye, water that had evaporated from the ocean surface condenses, releases heat, and powers the circling winds of the hurricane. The radar on the GPM satellite is able to estimate how much water is falling as precipitation inside of the hurricane, which serves as a guide to how much energy is being released inside the hurricane's central "heat engine."...
GPM Captures Hurricane Harvey's Rainfall
Music: "Whirlpool," Michael Jan Levine, Killer Tracks The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Core Observatory captured these images of Hurricane Harvey at 11:45 UTC and 21:25 UTC on the 27th of August nearly two days after the storm made landfall as it was meandering slowly southeast at just 2 mph (~4 kph) near Victoria, Texas west of Houston. The image shows rain rates derived from GPM's GMI microwave imager (outer swath) and dual-frequency precipitation radar or DPR (inner swath) overlaid on enhanced visible/infrared data from the GOES-East satellite. Harvey's cyclonic circulation is...
Harvey Hits Texas, Unleashes Major Flooding
Despite its earlier demise, after rejuvinating over the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, Hurricane Harvey has become a major weather maker as it unleashes historical flooding over parts of coastal Texas. Harvey began on the 17th of August as a weak tropical storm about 250 miles (~400 km) east of Barbados in the Leeward Islands. Over the next two days, Harvey continued moving steadily westward passing through the Leeward Islands as a still weak tropical storm and entered into the east central Caribbean. On the 19th, Harvey succumbed to the effects of northeasterly wind shear over the central...
GPM Catches Nor'easter over New England
At the time of the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Core Observatory overpass (April 1, 2017, 0550 UTC), the storm's center of low pressure was south of Long Island. At the mid-levels of the atmosphere, the circulation was centered over northeast Pennsylvania. This led to a classic overrunning, warm conveyor setup, which happened when the counterclockwise low level flow drew in cold air out of the north/northeast (hence "Nor'easter") from Canada. Higher up, warm and moist air from further south was lifted over this cold air and resulted in precipitation in the form of snow at the surface...
GPM Measures Tropical Cyclone Debbie
Tropical cyclone Debbie formed in the Coral Sea northeast of Australia om March 24, 2017. Debbie intensified and had hurricane force wind speeds within a day of formation. While headed toward northeastern Australia Debbie reached it's maximum sustained wind speeds estimated at over 100 kts (115 mph) on March 27, 2017 (UTC). Tropical cyclone Debbie came ashore on March 28th and brought destructive winds and extremely heavy rain to northeastern Australia. It was reported that heavy rainfall caused flash flooding that cut off a coastal town and covered several roads in Queensland. The GPM...
Another Pineapple Express Brings More Rain, Flooding to California
The West Coast is once again feeling the effects of the "Pineapple Express". Back in early January one of these "atmospheric river" events, which taps into tropical moisture from as far away as the Hawaiian Islands, brought heavy rains from Washington and Oregon all the way down to southern California. This second time around, many of those same areas were hit again. The current rains are a result of 3 separate surges of moisture impacting the the West Coast. The first such surge in this current event began impacting the Pacific coastal regions of Washington, Oregon, and northern California on...
GPM Sees Hurricane Matthew Nearing Florida
UPDATE 10/6/16: NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core observatory satellite flew over Hurricane Matthew several times as the category 4 storm headed toward Florida. The GPM Core Observatory carries two instruments that show the location and intensity of rain and snow, which defines a crucial part of the storm structure – and how it will behave. The GPM Microwave Imager sees through the tops of clouds to observe how much and where precipitation occurs, and the Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar observes precise details of precipitation in 3-dimensions. This data...
GPM Provides a Closer Look at the Louisiana Floods
Twice on August 12, 2016 GPM flew over a massive rainstorm that flooded large portions of Louisiana. The flooding was some of the worst ever in the state, resulting in a state of emergency. Tens of thousands of people were evacuated from their homes in the wake of this unprecedented event. Throughout the course of August 12 (UTC) GPM captured the internal structure of the storm twice and GPM IMERG measured the rainfall accumulation on the ground. NASA's GPM satellite is designed to measure rainfall using both passive microwave (GMI) and radar (DPR) instruments. DPR can observe 3D structures of...
NASA Sees Hermine's Twin Towers
In order for Hermine or any other tropical depression, to intensify there must be a pathway for heat energy from the ocean surface to enter the atmosphere. For Hermine, the conduit may have been one of the two "hot towers" that the Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core satellite observed on Aug. 31 at 4:09 p.m. EDT (2009 UTC). GPM's DPR instrument saw strong storms near the center of Tropical Depression Hermine on the evening of Aug. 31. Two "hot towers" are seen to the right of the low pressure center (south and east of the center), which are labeled "T1" and "T2." The "L"...
As farmers in Nepal prepare for the benefits of monsoon season, Dalia Kirschbaum anticipates the dangers of those torrential rains—mainly, the loosening of earth on steep slopes that can lead to landslides. In this mountainous country, 60 to 80 percent of the annual precipitation falls during the monsoon (roughly June to August). That’s when roughly 90 percent of Nepal’s landslide fatalities also occur, according to a 2015 report from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. “We know a high number of landslides occur around this time, so documenting them is...
Monsoons: Wet, Dry, Repeat
Credit: NASA/Goddard/Ryan Fitzgibbons This video is public domain and along with other supporting visualizations can be downloaded from the Scientific Visualization Studio The monsoon is a seasonal rain and wind pattern that occurs over South Asia (among other places). Through NASA satellites and models we can see the monsoon patterns like never before. Monsoon rains provide important reservoirs of water that sustain human activities like agriculture and supports the natural environment through replenishment of aquifers. However, too much rainfall routinely causes disasters in the region...
Storm Brings Heavy Precipitation to Northeast
UPDATE 1/23/2016 5:00pm ET On January 23, 2016 at 1239 UTC (7:39 AM EST) the GPM core observatory passed above the deadly winter storm that was burying the Northeast under a deep layer of snow. As GPM passed above a band of snow was shown approaching the island of Manhattan. The winter storm was predicted to dump near record snowfall in New York city. GPM's Microwave Imager (GMI) and Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) instruments showed massive amounts of moisture being transported from the Atlantic Ocean over states from New York westward through West Virginia. GPM's Radar instruments...
Rainfall Floods the Mississippi River
A series of winter storms brought more than 20 inches of rainfall to the Midwest and southeastern United States in December 2015. Massive flooding followed throughout both the regions. An animation of rainfall data from those storms was created at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. This animation shows the accumulation of rainfall over the United Stated during December 2015, from the IMERG precipitation dataset. The black outline indicates the Mississippi-Missouri River basin. This version has been edited to only show the periods of significant rainfall during the month...
Hurricane Patricia Makes Landfall in Mexico
The eye of hurricane Patricia hit the Mexican coast on October 23, 2015 at approximately 6:15 PM CDT(2315 UTC)near Cuixmala, Mexico. The maximum winds at that time were estimated to be 143 kts (165 mph). Patricia is weakening rapidly but continued heavy rain is expected to cause flash floods and mudslides in the Mexican states of Nayarit, Jalisco, Colima, Michoacan and Guerrero through Saturday October 24, 2015. Over the weekend the remants of Patricia are also expected to add to the extreme rainfall in Texas. Rainfall from a stalled front that has been causing flooding in northern and central...
NASA Aids Response to Carolina Flooding
It was rain that wouldn't quit. A weather system fueled by warm moisture streaming in from the Atlantic Ocean on Oct. 3 and 4 relentlessly dumped between one and two feet of rain across most of South Carolina. The result was rivers topping their banks and dams bursting. Catastrophic flooding followed across most of the state, which has left residents in some areas without power or clean drinking water. Tracking and predicting the deluge, both as rain and then floodwater, are the first steps to help protect people in harm's way. State and federal emergency managers have been on the front lines...
A narrated visualization of Typhoon Kilo. Click here for a full transcript. Click here to download this video in high resolution from the NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio. The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission core satellite provided many views of Tropical Cyclone Kilo over its very long life. GPM is a satellite co-managed by NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency that has the ability to analyze rainfall and cloud heights. GPM was able to provide data on Kilo over its 21 day life-span. The GPM core observatory satellite flew over Kilo on August 25, 2015 at...
Satellite-Based Flood Monitoring Central to Relief Agencies' Disaster Response
In January 2015, the Shire River in Malawi, and Zambezi River in Mozambique were under tight scrutiny. Weeks of torrential rains led these and other rivers to burst their banks displacing 390,000 people across the region. In southern Malawi 220,000 acres of farmland were turned into a lake, cutting off roads and stranding thousands of people on patches of high ground. The flood was devastating for the country, but within 72 hours of it being declared an emergency the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) was on the ground distributing food to residents. The quick response was supported by...
Using NASA Data to Show How Raindrops Could Save Rupees
Rainwater could save people in India a bucket of money, according to a new study by scientists looking at NASA satellite data. The study, partially funded by NASA’s Precipitation Measurement Missions, found that collecting rainwater for vegetable irrigation could reduce water bills, increase caloric intake and even provide a second source of income for people in India. The study, published in the June issue of Urban Water Journal, is based on precipitation data from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), a joint mission between NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, which...
GPM Sees Tropical Storm Bill Over Texas
Download in hi-res from the NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio Tropical Storm Bill made landfall over Texas at approximately 11:45am CST on June 16, 2015. Shortly after midnight, GPM passed over the storm as it slowly worked it's way northward across the already drenched state of Texas. This visualization shows Bill at precisely 12:11:27am CST (6:11:27 GMT) on June 17, 2015. The GPM Core Observatory carries two instruments that show the location and intensity of rain and snow, which defines a crucial part of the storm structure – and how it will behave. The GPM Microwave Imager sees...
3D Views of February Snow Storms from GPM
Download this video in HD formats from NASA Goddard's Scientific Visualization Studio The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Core Observatory captured a 3-D image of a winter storm on Feb. 17, 2015, that left 6 to 12 inches of snow over much of Kentucky, southwestern West Virginia and northwestern North Carolina. The shades of blue indicate rates of snowfall, with more intense snowfall shown in darker blue. Intense rainfall is shown in red. The imagery shows great variation in precipitation types over the southeastern United States. Download this video in HD formats from NASA Goddard's...
Signs of Spring Spring Weather What is spring to you?  Spring around the world March 20 - launch of contest
At 5:05 p.m. EST Monday, Jan. 26, 2015, the Global Precipitation Measurement mission's Core Observatory flew over the Nor'easter that dumped snow on New England. This satellite image shows the rate of rainfall, with low amounts in green and high in red, and snowfall, in blue to purple. The center of the storm, shown in 3-D, was offshore with far reaching bands of snowfall. More intense snow rates are shown in darker blue, which can be seen on the northern edge of the storm. Visible in the 3-D image of the center of the storm are the snowy tops of the clouds in blue and underneath where it...
GPM Dissects Super Typhoon Hagupit
On December 5, 2014 (1032UTC) the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission's Core Observatory flew over Typhoon Hagupit as it headed towards the Philippines. A few hours later at 1500 UTC (10 a.m. EST), Super Typhoon Hagupit's maximum sustained winds were near 130 knots (149.6 mph/241 kph), down from 150 knots (172 mph/277.8 kph). Typhoon-force winds extend out 40 nautical miles (46 miles/74 km) from the center, while tropical-storm-force winds extend out to 120 miles (138 miles/222 km). Animation revealing a swath of GPM/GMI precipitation rates over Typhoon Hagupit. As the camera moves...
GPM Flies Over Hurricane Gonzalo
Download in Hi-Res from the Scientific Visualization Studio On October 16th, 2014 (1342 UTC) the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission's Core Observatory flew over Hurricane Gonzalo as it headed towards Bermuda. Hurricane Gonzalo remains a category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale, with maximum sustained winds at 130 mph. As of 12:00 UTC (8:00a.m. EDT) on Friday, October 17th, the National Hurricane Center forecast located the storm about 195 miles south southwest of Bermuda, where a hurricane warning is in effect. The GPM Core Observatory carries two instruments that...
GPM Scans Typhoon Phanfone
Animation revealing a swath of GPM/GMI precipitation rates over Typhoon Phanfone. The camera then moves down closer to the storm to reveal DPR's volumetric view of Phanphone. A slicing plane dissects the Typhoon from south to north and back again, revealing it's inner precipitation rates. Shades of blue indicate frozen precipitation (in the upper atmosphere). Shades of green to red are liquid precipitation which extend down to the ground. Download in Hi-Res from the Scientific Visualization Studio On October 6, 2014 (0215 UTC) the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission's Core...
GPM Uncovers Compact Eyewall in Hurricane Simon
Hurricane Simon appeared to be keeping a secret before it rapidly intensified on Oct. 4, but the Global Precipitation Measurement or GPM satellite was able uncover it. On Oct. 4 at 0940 UTC (5:40 a.m. EDT) observations by the Ku-band radar on the GPM satellite suggested that the Eastern Pacific Ocean's Hurricane Simon was hiding a very compact eyewall hours before the National Hurricane Center detected rapid intensification of Simon's surface winds. The GPM satellite was launched in February of this year and is managed by both NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. On Oct. 4 at 0940...
PMM Article Image
On September 26, the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) satellite flew over an extra-tropical cyclone whose center was approaching Norway. The Norwegian weather service reported that this storm brought gale-force winds to parts of Norway's coast and mountains (20 m/s in the mountains and 50 m/s just off-coast, late at night on September 26). Extra-tropical cyclones this strong or stronger are a regular feature of northern European winters. The particularly damaging ones are called "windstorms." Borrowing a page from hurricane forecasters, some weather agencies in affected countries name...
GPM Captures Hurricane Odile
​ ​ Animation revealing a swath of GPM/GMI precipitation rates over Hurricane Odile. The camera then moves down closer to the Hurricane to reveal DPR's volumetric view of Odile. As the camera rotates around the Hurricane, a slicing plane dissects Odile revealing it's inner precipitation rates closer to the eye. Shades of blue indicate frozen precipitation (in the upper atmosphere). Shades of green to red are liquid precipitation which extend down to the ground. On September 15, 2014 (15:11 UTC) the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission's Core Observatory flew over Hurricane Odile as...
GPM Satellite Sees First Atlantic Hurricane
Animation of NASA-JAXA's GPM satellite data of rain rates and internal structure of Hurricane Arthur on July 3 2014. Image Credit: NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio / JAXA Download the Hi-Res Video Here The Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Core Observatory flew over Hurricane Arthur five times between July 1 and July 5, 2014. Arthur is the first tropical cyclone of the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season. GPM is a joint mission between NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. The Core Observatory was launched Feb. 27 from Japan and began its prime mission on May 29, just in time...
Super Typhoon Haiyan Hits the Philippines
Super typhoon Haiyan, equivalent to a Category 5 hurricane on the US Saffir-Simpson scale, struck the central Philippines municipality of Guiuan at the southern tip of the province of Eastern Samar early Friday morning at 20:45 UTC (4:45 am local time) as an extremely powerful super typhoon, perhaps the strongest ever recorded at landfall, with sustained winds estimated at 195 mph (315 kph) by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center. Previously, Hurricane Camille, which struck the northern Gulf Coast in 1969, held the record with 190 mph sustained winds at landfall. After striking Samar, Haiyan...
NASA satellites used to predict zebra migrations
Of stars and stripes: NASA satellites used to predict zebra migrations One of the world's longest migrations of zebras occurs in the African nation of Botswana, but predicting when and where zebras will move has not been possible until now. Using NASA rain and vegetation data, researchers can track when and where arid lands begin to green, and for the first time anticipate if zebras will make the trek or, if the animals find poor conditions en route, understand why they will turn back. Covering an area of approximately 8,500 square miles (22,000 square kilometers), Botswana’s Okavango Delta is...
Aerial photo of 2010 landslide in Gansu, China
By Lisa-Natalie Anjozian, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Original www.nasa.gov Press Release (published 11/27/12) A NASA study using TRMM satellite data revealed that the year 2010 was a particularly bad year for landslides around the world. Around midnight on August 8, 2010, a violent surge of loosened earth roared down mountain slopes and slammed into quietly sleeping neighborhoods in Zhouqu County in Gansu, China. The catastrophic mudslides—the deadliest in decades according to state media—buried some areas under as much as 23 feet (7 meters) of suffocating sludge. 1,765 people died...
The NPOL radar and a Summer Tanger
By Ellen Gray, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Original www.nasa.gov Press Release (published 6/7/12) NASA and Nature Conservancy Agreement Supports [no-glossary]Precipitation[/no-glossary] and Migratory Bird Research The NASA NPOL radar is a research grade S-band, scanning dual-polarimetric radar. It underwent a complete antenna system upgrade in 2010 and is one of two fully transportable research-grade S-band systems in the world. It is used to make accurate volumetric measurements of precipitation including rainfall rate, particle size distributions, water contents and precipitation type...
TRMM image of hurricane Irene intesifying as it nears the Bahamas
UPDATE: Monday, August 29th, 2011 Irene Drenches Northeastern United States UPDATE: Friday, August 26th, 2011 Irene Passes Through the Bahamas, Heads Towards Cape Hatterus Wednesday, August 24th, 2011 After becoming a small hurricane while passing over Puerto Rico, Irene re-emerged over the warm, open waters of the western Atlantic northwest of the Dominican Republic on the morning of August 22nd. The storm quickly showed signs of intensifying as deep convective towers arose near the center of Irene, releasing heat into the core of the system. In response, Irene's central pressure fell and...

In a series of three half-day virtual meetings, this workshop will focus on current applications and future opportunities of NASA precipitation and cloud data products to support transport and logistical activities for aviation, maritime, roads and highway transportation systems. The workshop will bring together representatives from federal and state operational agencies and private companies to discuss how NASA precipitation and cloud products could be better leveraged to inform decision-making for transport and logistical operations. The workshop will also provide an opportunity for end...

Cameras outside the International Space Station captured dramatic views of Hurricane Zeta at 12:50 pm ET October 28, as it churned 200 miles south-southwest of New Orleans packing winds of 90 miles an hour. Credit: NASA International Space Station

GPM Core Observatory overpass of Tropical Storm Zeta on October 28 at approximately 3:25am CDT (8:25 UTC). Credit: NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio

View an interactive 3D visualization of this overpass in STORM Event Viewer

GPM overpass of Tropical Storm Zeta on October 25 at approximately 2:15pm CDT (19:15 UTC). Half-hourly rainfall estimates from NASA’s multi-satellite IMERG dataset are shown in 2D on the ground, while rainfall rates from GPM’s DPR instrument are shown as a 3D point cloud, with liquid precipitation shown in green, yellow and red, and frozen precipitation shown in blue and purple. Credit: NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio

View an interactive 3D visualization of this overpass in STORM Event Viewer

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