Tropical storm warnings are in effect in Micronesia as NASA and other satellite imagery indicates that Tropical Storm Bopha continues to intensify.
The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument that flies aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of Tropical Storm Bopha on Nov. 27 at 0241 UTC that indicated a lot of power exists in the strengthening tropical storm. The AIRS image captured the eastern half of the tropical storm and showed a large area of very cold, very high cloud tops, where temperatures colder than -63 Fahrenheit (-52 Celsius) have the potential for dropping heavy rainfall.
On Nov. 27, the National Weather Service in Tiyan, Guam noted that “Residents of Satawal in Yap State should closely monitor the progress of Tropical Storm Bopha, as a tropical storm watch could be required Wednesday, Nov. 28.” A tropical storm warning remained in effect for Nukuoro in Pohnpei State and Lukunor in Chuuk State. A tropical storm watch remains in effect for Losap, the Chuuk Lagoon Islands and Puluwat in Chuuk State.
At 1500 UTC (10 a.m. EST/1 a.m. CHST local time) the center of Tropical Storm Bopha was located near latitude 4.7 degrees north and longitude 155.2 degrees east, only 55 miles north-northeast of Nukuoro. Bopha was also about105 miles southeast of Lukunor and 225 miles southeast of Losap. Tropical Storm Bopha was nearly stationary but the National Weather Service expects Bopha to start moving westward.
Bopha’s maximum sustained winds have increased to 50 mph and Tropical Storm Bopha is expected to continue intensifying. Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 45 miles from the center, making the storm almost 100 miles in diameter.