Quang (Southern Indian Ocean)

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On April 30 at 02:50 UTC, the MODIS instrument aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this visible image of Tropical Cyclone Quang in the Southern Indian Ocean after it developed an eye.
Credits: NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team

Tropical Cyclone Quang strengthened during the early morning hours of April 30 (Eastern Daylight Time/U.S.) and developed an eye. The stronger Quang neared the coast of Western Australia and triggered warnings.

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On April 29 the International Space Station’s RapidScat instrument measured Quang’s sustained surface winds as it continued strengthening. RapidScat observed the storm’s winds from 11:44 UTC to 13:17 UTC (7:44 a.m. to 9:17 a.m. EDT). Strongest winds were seen in the southern quadrant of the storm where a band of thunderstorms was wrapping into the center. Those winds reached speeds of 30 meters per second (108 kph/67 mph).

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On April 29, ISS- RapidScat observed Quang’s strongest winds in the southern quadrant of the storm. Those winds reached speeds of 30 meters per second (in red) (108 kph/67 mph).
Credits: NASA JPL, Doug Tyler

On April 30, when NASA’s Aqua satellite passed over Quang, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument data provided a visible picture that showed an eye developed, and was surrounded by a concentration of strong thunderstorms. Bands of thunderstorms east of the center wound into the low-level center from the southern quadrant.

Forecasters at the Joint Typhoon Warning Center looked at water vapor imagery that showed Quang’s spiral banding had weakened “significantly” due to the dry air wrapping around the western and northern portion of the system. A microwave image showed a weak eye feature with the bulk of convection displaced to the southeast as a result of moderate northwesterly wind shear. Winds are blowing from the northwest between 20 to 25 knots (23 to 28.7 mph / 37 to 46.3 kph) and battering Quang.

On April 30 at 0900 UTC, Quang reached maximum strength when sustained winds peaked at 115 knots. Six hours later at 1500 UTC, maximum sustained winds were 105 knots (120.8 mph / 194.5 kph). Quang was centered near 19.4 south latitude and 110.9 east longitude, about 279 nautical miles northwest of Learmonth, Australia. Quang was moving to the southeast at 13 knots (15 mph / 24 kph).

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect from Mardie to Cape Cuvier and a Tropical Storm Watch is in effect from Cape Cuvier to Carnarvo. In addition, a Blue Alert is in effect for residents in or near coastal and island communities between Onslow and Cape Cuvier including Onslow, Exmouth, Nanutarra, Ningaloo and Coral Bay. Updated warnings and information from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology (ABM) is available at: http://www.bom.gov.au/cyclone/index.shtml

The ABM forecast noted that Severe Tropical Cyclone Quang is expected to continue to move toward the Northwest Cape area during the next 24-36 hours. Increasing vertical wind shear and cooler sea surface temperatures are expected to weaken Quang below cyclone intensity Saturday morning where it is expected to make landfall on May 1 south of Learmonth and move inland on a southeasterly track where it will dissipate.

Rob Gutro
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

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