Oh My God Look at the Atlantic Ocean Right Now

September 11, 2018

Hurricane Florence is the biggest threat in the Atlantic right now, but it’s hardly the only storm. The tropics have gone wild, with three hurricanes spinning at the same time, as you can see for yourself in satellite imagery captured as the sun rose on the Atlantic Monday morning.

In addition to rapidly-strengthening Florence (which just hit Category 3 status), Helene and Isaac became hurricanes on Sunday. More than 2,000 miles separates the three hurricanes so the only way to view them all together is from space. Luckily, there’s a way to do that thanks to GOES 16.

The next generation satellite was launched last year with the express intent of improving our view of hurricanes to improve forecasts. But it also provides one hell of a view to the public, showing what our planet is capable of from a vantage point of more than 22,000 miles above the Earth’s surface.

GOES 16 also has the ability to zoom in on specific hurricanes, providing close-up views that are equal parts beautiful and harrowing. The National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration released imagery on Monday showing the sun rise over the eye of hurricane Florence. The swirl of clouds around the hurricane’s center, which is starting to clear out, are a sign it’s strengthening as expected.

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