NASA finds Typhoon Mangkhut lashing Guam and the Northern Marianas Islands


Credit: Credit: NASA/NRL

NASA's Aqua satellite passed over the Northwestern Pacific Ocean and captured a visible image of Typhoon Mangkhut lashing Guam and the Northern Marianas Islands.

On Sept. 7 when Mangkhut formed as a tropical depression it was known as Tropical Depression 26W. On the day it formed, a tropical storm watch was posted for Enewetak. 26W then moved west toward Micronesia and strengthened into a typhoon.

On Sept. 10, the National Weather Service (NWS) in Tiyan, Guam said a Typhoon Warning remains in effect for Guam, Rota, Tinian, Saipan and adjacent coastal waters in the Mariana Islands. Guam is a U.S. island territory in Micronesia.

At 0335 UTC on Sept.10 (11:35 p.m. EDT on Sept. 9) the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer or MODIS instrument aboard NASA's Aqua satellite provided a visible image of Typhoon Mangkhut. Satellite imagery shows the center over the Northern Mariana Islands and a thick band of thunderstorms wrapping from south of the center to the west past Guam.

At 5 a.m. EDT on Sept. 10 (7 p.m. CHST local time), the NWS in Guam noted that "Damaging or destructive winds are now occurring. Damaging south winds of up to 105 mph with gusts to 120 mph will continue for the next few hours. Winds will gradually decrease to between 55 and 65 mph around midnight. Damaging south winds early Tuesday morning will decrease to 25 to 35 mph by the afternoon. Small craft should remain in port and well secured."

At 11 a.m. EDT (1 a.m. CHST/1500 UTC) the center of Typhoon Mangkhut was located near Latitude 14.1 degrees north and longitude 143.5 degrees east. That's about 95 miles west-northwest of Guam, 115 miles west of Rota, 155 miles west-southwest of Tinian and about 165 miles west-southwest of Saipan.

Typhoon Mangkhut is moving toward the west at 17 mph. It is expected to make a slight turn to the west-northwest with a decrease in forward speed over the next few days.Maximum sustained winds remain at 115 mph. Typhoon Mangkhut (26W) is forecast to intensify through Wednesday, Sept 12.

Typhoon force winds extend outward from the center up to 50 miles. Tropical storm force winds extend outward from the center up to 180 miles to the north and up to 120 miles to the south.

Mangkhut is forecast to move on a westerly track and move away from Guam and the Marianas while strengthening.


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