Interesting Satellite Imagery of Severe Storms from 10 April 2009

1km MODIS visible and 11 µm infrared (in color) satellite imagery from 10 April 2009 at 1831 UTC.

1km MODIS visible and 11 µm infrared (in color) satellite imagery from 10 April 2009 at 1831 UTC.

The storm system that struck the Tennessee Valley on 10 April 2009 presented several impressive satellite images.  The image shown above is an overlay of 1 km MODIS visible imagery with 1 km MODIS 11 micron infrared imagery (in color).  The image combination tool in AWIPS allows for a unique presentation as the visible imagery shows cloud structure, especially with some of the towering cumulonimbus clouds and cirrus shield assoctiated with the severe weather.  The infrared imagery shows the coldest cloud tops associated with the strongest storms, shown by the pink region.  The image below demonstrates the full power of MODIS.  This visible image has a resolution of 250 m and is a snapshot of the powerful thunderstorms that would later impact the central and eastern portions of the Tennessee Valley.  Unlike the more well known GOES imagery, MODIS can only provide a snapshot image as it is aboard a polar orbiting satellite.  However, MODIS gives us a preview of future capabilities.

MODIS visible imagery with 250 m resolution taken on 10 April 2009, 1647 UTC.  This high resolution image shows the powerful line of cumulonimbus thunderstorms as they advance towards northwestern Alabama and through central Tennessee.

MODIS visible imagery with 250 m resolution taken on 10 April 2009, 1647 UTC. This high resolution image shows the powerful line of cumulonimbus thunderstorms as they advance towards northwestern Alabama and through central Tennessee.

One thought on “Interesting Satellite Imagery of Severe Storms from 10 April 2009

  1. Interesting post. The high resolution MODIS data provides a detailed view of the cloud features contrasting cloud types and coverage providing a 3D-like view. This imagery is an example of the type of data to be available from future NPOES and GOES-R satellite instruments.

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