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Off Australia’s Coast of Pilbara, NASA predicts Tropical Cyclone Damien

The low-pressure zone that formed and lasted a couple of days off Australia’s Kimberley coast recently moved west and then created a tropical cyclone, Damien, off the coast of Pilbara. NASA‘s satellite in Terra crossed over the Southern Indian Ocean and sent a clear picture of a new tropical cyclone to weather forecasters.  The Pilbara Peninsula also has an identity as West Australia’s Northwest Coast.

On February 6, an image of Damien, visible enough that indicated the storm was more rounded than the day before as it continued to intensify, was provided with such a Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer or MODIS device that fled aboard on NASA’s Terra satellite. A much more rounded form of a tropical cyclone implies that a more developed storm is forming. Satellite imagery showed a small central thick overcast characterized by rainbands wrapping in the direction of the low-level center for circulation. 

On February 6, the Australian Meteorological Bureau (ABM) issued Damien with alerts and watches. Wallal to Mardie, from Port Hedland, Karratha, and Dampier, all are part of the alert region. The Watch Region stretches from Mardie to Onslow, and Pilbara’s inland center, involves Tom Price, Paraburdoo, Marble Bar, and Nullagine. For locals in or around Wallal Downs, Port Hedland and Mardie to Onslow, the Blue Warning is valid, but not for the villagers in Onslow, (including those of the towns of Pannawonica, Tom Price, Paraburdoo, Nullagine and Marble Bar).

Of the residents in and around Port Hedland to Mardie, the Yellow Warning is applicable, including the regions south of Millstream,(Port Hedland town, Whim Creek, Samson Point, Wickham, Roebourne, Karratha and Dampier).

At around 11 p.m. AWST (10 a.m. EST) on February 6, the ABM stated that the Tropical Cyclone Damien had highly sustained wind levels of about 75 Km per hour(40 knots per 47 mph) with maximum speeds. It is situated at about 17.5 degrees latitude south and 118.1 degrees longitude east, approximately 315 km(196 miles) north of Port Hedland and 385 km(239 miles) north-northeast of Karratha. Damien is at 20 kilometers (12 miles) per hour, speed shifting to the west-southwest.

The tropical cyclone will continue to grow as it heads to the west of the southwest. On Friday, February 7, Damien will be heading south to the coast of Pilbara. ABM warned that “The Pilbara coast as forecasted is to have a severe tropical cyclone effect on Saturday, February 8,  “NASA’s Terra satellite is one of its satellite fleets that provide hurricane research data.

The world’s most significant weather events are tropical cyclones/hurricanes. NASA’s space and science research expertise contribute to essential services that other federal agencies, including storm weather forecasting, provide to the Americans.

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