Satellite Captures Storms Breaking Like a Wave Over Toronto

By Tom Yulsman | July 9, 2013 7:05 pm

Click on this screenshot to watch an animation of GOES-13 satellite images showing storms developing and then enveloping Toronto on July 8th. The torrential downpours broke records in the city and resulted in massive flooding. (Source animation: GOES Project Science/NASA & NOAA.)

In my earlier post about Monday’s Toronto deluge, I mentioned that I would continue to look for remote sensing imagery of the storms that inundated the city. Click on the screenshot above for what I’ve come up with so far — an animation of GOES-13 images that I’ve uploaded to Youtube.

I started with the eastern view of the GOES-13 satellite for a time period spanning the event. (You can find the most recent GOES images and animations here.) Then I did some cropping of the animation to emphasize what happened over Toronto. Lastly, I added some explanatory text at the beginning.

In the video, look for a line of clouds beginning to build in the upper left quadrant of the frame, west of Lake Michigan. Those clouds then move east, blossoming at some points, covering Lake Huron, and then approaching Lake Ontario from the north and west.

At about 18:00 hours UTC (look for the time stamp at the top of the video frame), the clouds seem to begin breaking like a wave over the lake, including the city of Toronto on its shore. By 20:00 UTC, or 4 p.m. local time, torrential downpours are battering the city.

The rest is history.




ImaGeo is a visual blog focusing on the intersection of imagery, imagination and Earth. It focuses on spectacular visuals related to the science of our planet, with an emphasis (although not an exclusive one) on the unfolding Anthropocene Epoch.

About Tom Yulsman

Tom Yulsman is Director of the Center for Environmental Journalism and a Professor of Journalism at the University of Colorado, Boulder. He also continues to work as a science and environmental journalist with more than 30 years of experience producing content for major publications. His work has appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Audubon, Climate Central, Columbia Journalism Review, Discover, Nieman Reports, and many other publications. He has held a variety of editorial positions over the years, including a stint as editor-in-chief of Earth magazine. Yulsman has written one book: Origins: the Quest for Our Cosmic Roots, published by the Institute of Physics in 2003.


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