GPM Sees Fred Forming In Cape Verdes
Fred became the first Cape Verdes hurricane of the 2015 Atlantic season when it was upgraded from a tropical storm on August 31, 2015 at 0600 UTC (2 AM AST). The GPM core observatory satellite flew over on August 30, 2015 at 0236 UTC when Fred was forming from a tropical wave that moved off the African coast. Rainfall was measured by GPM's Dual-Frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) at the extreme rate of close to 128 mm (5.0 inches) per hour. Rainfall in towering convective thunderstorms at Fred’s center of circulation were providing the energy necessary for intensification into a hurricane. Three dimensional reflectivity data from GPM’s DPR showed that these “hot towers” had storm top heights reaching to 16.2 km (10.0 miles).
Hurricane Fred is predicted by the National Hurricane Center (NHC) to intensify to peak intensity of 75 kts (85 mph) today while moving over the Caped Verdes Islands. After today cooler waters and increasing west-southwesterly wind shear are predicted to cause Fred to gradually weaken.