TRMM Sees Weakening Hurricane Kenneth

TRMM image of Kenneth

Hurricane Kenneth (in the eastern Pacific Ocean) reached powerful category four hurricane strength with wind speeds of 125 kts (~144 mph) on Tuesday 22 November 2011. The TRMM satellite passed directly above Kenneth as it was rapidly weakening on Wednesday 23 November 2011 at 0455 UTC. A rainfall analysis from TRMM's Micrwave Imager (TMI) and Precipitation Radar (PR) instruments is shown overlaid on an infrared image from TRMM's Visible and InfraRed Scanner (VIRS). Very heavy rainfall of over 50mm/hr (~2 inches) is shown by this analysis occurring in the northeastern side of Kenneth's eye wall.

TRMM radar image of Kenneth

TRMM Precipitation Radar (PR) data were used above to show a 3-D view of Kenneth's structure. Very powerful storms in the eastern side of Kenneth's eye wall were extending to heights of 16km (~9.9 miles) but TRMM's radar data reveals that the western side of the eye wall had eroded. Continued upper level northwesterly wind shear and future movement over cooler ocean water will result in further weakening. The National Hurricane Center (NHC) predicts that Kenneth will weaken to a remnant low by Sunday 27 November 2011.