Trying to pack a lot of info in while a catastrophe has our attention.
Above, on the day (Monday Sept. 10) that is statistically the peak for tropical cyclone activity – the satellite does not disappoint.
The second big factor favoring Florence’s rapid intensification is the remarkably warm ocean. The storm is cruising over an area where ocean surface temperatures are up to 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit), providing more fuel to turbocharge the hurricane. Those temperatures are about 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above normal for this time of year.
“Now that Florence has these ingredients, and is developing a ring of intense storms around its eye, it will likely continue to strengthen to a major hurricane, likely a Category 4 storm soon,” Brian Tang, an atmospheric scientist at the University of Albany, told Earther shortly before the Category 3 and Category 4 updates came in.
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