The Global Precipitation Measurement mission's Core Observatory is performing normally. Calibration of the Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) and GPM Microwave Imager (GMI) continued.
GPM Core Observatory
The Global Precipitation Measurement mission's Core Observatory is performing normally. On April 2, the GPM Core Observatory fired its thrusters for an 80-second delta-V burn that accelerated the spacecraft and circularized its orbit. The Core Observatory is now flying in its final orbit, 253 miles (407 kilometers) above Earth's surface.
The Global Precipitation Measurement mission's Core Observatory commissioning activities continued normally this week. Both the GPM Microwave Imager and the Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) are collecting science data and NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency released the first images from the instruments on March 25.
The DPR's functional checkout activities and internal calibration continued. The first external calibration using the Active Radar Calibration site in Tsukuba, Japan, was performed on March 23.
Image Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
The storm formed from the collision of a cold air mass wrapping around a warm air mass, emerging over the ocean near Okinawa on March 8. It moved northeast over the ocean south of Japan, drawing cold air west-to-east over the land, a typical winter weather pattern that also brought heavy snow over Hokkaido, the northernmost of the four main islands. After the GPM images were taken, the storm continued to move eastward, slowly intensifying before weakening in the central North Pacific.
First data visualization of the three-dimensional structure of precipitation collected by the Dual-frequency Precipitation Radar aboard the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission's Core Observatory. The image shows rain rates across a vertical cross-section approximately 4.4 miles (7 kilometers) high through an extra-tropical cyclone observed off the coast of Japan on March 10, 2014. The DPR 152-mile (245 kilometers) wide swath is nested within the center of the GPM Microwave Imager's wider observation path.
The image shows rain rates across a 550-mile (885 kilometer) wide swath of an extra-tropical cyclone observed off the coast of Japan on March 10, 2014. Red areas indicate heavy rainfall, while yellow and blue indicate less intense rainfall. In the northwest part of the storm in the upper left of the image, the blue areas indicate falling snow.