How a Satellite Can Give Insights Beyond a Storm's Impacts! (credit: NOAA NWS Aberdeen, South Dakota)
DISCUSSION: As atmospheric science continues to evolve with time, there is no question that higher-resolution satellite imagery continues to change the way in which we study and evaluate severe weather events. First off, higher resolution satellite imagery allows atmospheric scientists to make much more precise detections of pre-convective initiation signals as well as the timing of convective initiation itself by way of there being a much clearer and real-time view of severe weather events as they unfold with passing time.
Furthermore, much finer detail associated with high-resolution satellite imagery from satellites such as the MODIS and/or MODIS-TERRA satellite platforms allow atmospheric scientists to make much more detailed assessments of severe weather impacts than ever before in human history. Thus, the presence of higher-resolution satellite imagers has forever revolutionized the way in which deep convective storms are analyzed and examined both during their existence and well after their demise. A fitting example for how atmospheric scientists use such high-resolution satellite imagery to enhance their analysis is included above from a recent severe weather event which unfolded on 29 June 2018 (i.e., within the past week).
As shown above, back on 29 June 2018 there was a potent supercell thunderstorm which traveled a little over 420 miles during its existence which is quite impressive just by itself. However, to boost such an impressive distance feat, this storm also went as far as to leave behind a solid hail scar in its wake. This hail scar was later observed via the MODIS satellite imager (as captured in the graphic above) to verify the path length and width over which this lengthy hail scar could be found across.
Although there were fortunately no fatalities immediately reported in association with this severe weather event, it goes without saying that a severe thunderstorm moving through this region does not bode well for crops since hail can be very damaging to crops. So, in a sense, even if a severe storm is not directly impacting people, there is always a solid likelihood across the Central Plains states that a severe storm is still indirectly impacting the livelihood or safety of animals or livestock belonging to various families or farmers.
To learn more about other interesting weather history events from around the world, be sure to click here!
© 2018 Meteorologist Jordan Rabinowitz