This true-color image of Tropical Cyclone Kujira was acquired on April 15, 2003, by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite.
The high-resolution image provided above is 1000 meters per pixel. The MODIS Rapid Response System provides this image at MODIS’ maximum spatial resolution of 250 meters.
Typhoon Kujira, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Amang, was an extremely long-lived tropical cyclone that lasted for 16 days affected the island nations of Micronesia, Taiwan, and Japan in April 2003, as well as the earliest typhoon in a calendar year to ever make landfall on the latter. Forming from a broad area of disturbed weather as a tropical depression on April 9 well removed from any landmasses, Kujira quickly intensified in its early stages, and was upgraded to a tropical storm just two days after cyclogenesis.
Strengthening slowed afterwards, though the storm attained typhoon intensity on April 14. Intensification continued and late on April 15, Kujira reached its peak intensity with winds of 165 km/h (105 mph) and a minimum barometric pressure of 930 mbar (hPa; 27.46 inHg). Following peak intensity, Kujira began to track northwest and oscillate in strength, cresting an additional two times in intensity
Credit: Image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC