A More Rational Approach to the Storm

I’ve always wondered if there is a place where those godly satellite pictures of the earth’s weather are kept in a neat archive, to be accessed by internet and downloaded. This would allow you to look at the weather situation after a passage and compare the remote view from up there with the actual experience down on the surface. Alas, there seems to be no such thing. All I have left to learn about the experience are the weather maps of the general Southwest Pacific analysis saved on my computer, the ones I received through the little shortwave receiver aboard while underway. Here’s a little animation I built with them where Aluna’s actual position at the time is plotted onto the maps.

Bob McDavitt directed me to the following graphics drawn from actual satellite measurements of the surface winds at the time, which can be accessed here http://manati.star.nesdis.noaa.gov/datasets/ASCATData.php/ASCATData.php.  They depict the wind strength at 8 in the morning and at 10 at night on June 15.

He also had some GRIB files still on his computer for June 15 and sent this snapshot to me with the following explanation: “The lines labeled 4, 5, 6 are zones with waves with significant wave height above 4, 5, 6 meters. Add 50% to get occasional wave, around 3 times an hour or double that to get maximum wave (once a day or so).”

It looks from all this that as bad as it was, it could have been quite a bit worse as the center of the storm passed about a hundred miles South of us with the strongest winds radiating about eighty miles out from it. Interestingly enough the fiercest winds of all seemed to have been directly behind it, trailing the eye at a distance of about sixty miles.  This would explain the nasty cross-seas that had made me fly through the air in the middle of that night!

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One Response to “A More Rational Approach to the Storm”

  1. Beatriz Restrepo Says:

    Intesresante verlos con los mapas cuando pasan la tormenta. Tecnologia. This is amazing!!!!

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