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Tropical Cyclone 04A Still Moving Towards Somalia

9.5N 53.6E

December 24th, 2012 Category: Tropical Storms

Tropical Depression ARB 02 – December 22nd, 2012

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Track of Tropical Depression ARB 02 - December 22nd, 2012 © Univ. of Wisconsin

Track of TD ARB 02

As of 0600 UTC, 24 December 2012, Deep Depression ARB 02, or Tropical Cyclone 04A, was located near latitude 8.3°N and longitude 53.8°E, about 430 km southeast of Ras Binnah.

The storm is forecast to intensify further and move west-southwestwards towards the Somalia coast in the next 48 hours. Maximum sustained winds are at 55 km/h (35 mph) gusting to 75 km/h (45 mph). Central pressure is estimated at 1002 hPa.

Tropical Cyclone 04A Expected to Make Landfall Over Somalia

8.0N 55.8E

December 24th, 2012 Category: Tropical Storms

Tropical Depression ARB 02 – December 22nd, 2012

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Track of Tropical Depression ARB 02 - December 22nd, 2012 © Univ. of Wisconsin

Track of TD ARB 02

Deep Depression ARB 02 has strengthened into Tropical Cyclone 04A. The system is currently located approximately 280 nm southeast of Cape Guardafui, Somalia, after tracking westward at 17 knots over the past six hours.

Animated enhanced infrared satellite imagery shows the system has maintained organization and deep convective bands around a well-defined low level circulation center. The cyclone continues to exhibit good outflow on the poleward side which is countering the negative effects of moderate (15-20 knot) easterly vertical wind shear (VWS), as evident on animated water vapor satellite imagery. Maximum significant wave height is 16 feet.

With little change in the upper level environment along the forecast track, TC 04A is expected to maintain its current intensity until it makes landfall along the northeast coast of Somalia after TAU 24. The system will dissipate over land by TAU 36 due to increased vws and land interaction.

Topography of Haiti, in Western Hispaniola – March 4th, 2012

19.0N 72.6W

March 4th, 2012 Category: Image of the day, Mountains

Haiti - December 23rd, 2011

This orthorectified wide-swath ASAR image shows Haiti, on the western part of Hispaniola, the second largest island in the Greater Antilles. Haiti’s terrain consists mainly of rugged mountains interspersed with small coastal plains and river valleys.

The northern region consists of the Massif du Nord (Northern Massif) and the Plaine du Nord (Northern Plain). The Massif du Nord is an extension of the Cordillera Central in the Dominican Republic. It begins at Haiti’s eastern border, north of the Guayamouc River, and extends to the northwest through the northern peninsula. The lowlands of the Plaine du Nord lie along the northern border with the Dominican Republic, between the Massif du Nord and the North Atlantic Ocean.

The central region consists of two plains and two sets of mountain ranges. The Plateau Central (Central Plateau) extends along both sides of the Guayamouc River, south of the Massif du Nord. It runs from the southeast to the northwest. To the southwest of the Plateau Central are the Montagnes Noires, whose most northwestern part merges with the Massif du Nord. Its westernmost point is known as Cap Carcasse.

The southern region consists of the Plaine du Cul-de-Sac (the southeast) and the mountainous southern peninsula (also known as the Tiburon Peninsula). The Plaine du Cul-de-Sac is a natural depression that harbors the country’s saline lakes, such as Trou Caïman and Haiti’s largest lake, Lac Azuéi. The Chaîne de la Selle mountain range – an extension of the southern mountain chain of the Dominican Republic (the Sierra de Baoruco) – extends from the Massif de la Selle in the east to the Massif de la Hotte in the west. This mountain range harbors Pic la Selle, the highest point in Haiti at 2,680 metres (8,793 ft).

Great Sand Sea Stretching Across Libya and Egypt – March 20th, 2011

24.0N 25.0E

March 20th, 2011 Category: Deserts, Image of the day

Egypt - February 17th, 2011

This image stretches from Turkey (above), across the Mediterranean Sea to Egypt (lower right) and Libya (lower left). Visible in the lower half of the image is the Libyan Desert, also known as the Great Sand Sea, located in the northern and eastern part of the Sahara Desert.

It occupies Egypt west of the Nile (the Egyptian portion is thus called the Western Desert), eastern Libya and northwestern Sudan alongside the Nubian Desert. It extends approximately 1100 km from east to west, and 1,000 km from north to south, in about the shape of a rectangle. Like most of the Sahara, this desert is primarily sand and hamada or stony plain.

Sand plains, dunes, ridges and some depressions (basins) typify the region, and no rivers drain into or out of the area. The desert’s Gilf Kebir plateau reaches an altitude of just over 1000 m, and along with the nearby massif of Jebel Uweinat is an exception to the uninterrupted territory of basement rocks covered by layers of horizontally bedded sediments, forming a massive sand plain, low plateaus and dunes.


Lakes Habbaniyah, Milh and Qadisiyah Near Lake Tharthar in Iraq

32.7N 43.6E

February 12th, 2011 Category: Lakes, Rivers

Iraq - January 16th, 2011

The largest lake in this image is the teardrop-shaped Lake Tharthar, situated between the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers in Iraq. The construction of several dams has made it an important source for irrigation.

Several other lakes can also be observed nearby. To the south is
Lake Habbaniyah, a shallow natural lake with a surface area 140 km². Further south is Lake Milh, a depression into which excess water from the Euphrates River is diverted by a controlled escape channel or canal.

Finally, Lake Qadisiyah can be observed to the west of Lake Tharthar. It was formed by the damming of the Euphrates River above Haditha, Iraq. It has 100 kilometres of shoreline and provides irrigation water for nearby cultivated fields.