Few phenomena create feelings of dread and awe like the weather. From space, nearly everything looks beautiful – including weather. The European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT) put together a fantastic video showing the weather of 2015 as seen by satellites operated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Organization (NOAA) and the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA).
Mark Higgins, a Training Manager at EUMETSAT, highlights several major weather events in the eight-minute long video.
Here are my favorite moments:
Around the 5 minute mark, you can see an incredibly active eastern Pacific with multiple cyclones active at any given point. At 5:40, you can see three hurricanes/cyclones form simultaneously in the eastern Pacific.
The changing of the seasons. As winter gives way to spring, you can see the snow cover retreat from the northern U.S. into Canada. The exact opposite happens as fall gives way to winter later in the video.
Blink and you’ll miss it. In October 2015, Hurricane Patricia rapidly intensified off the western coast of Mexico before making landfall. Watch the hurricane form, make landfall and dissipate in just a few seconds starting at 6:57.
The hypnotic pulsing of thunderstorms around the equator. Despite all the other weather events going on, I can’t keep my eyes off the pulsing thunderstorms.You can see just how much rain areas of northern South America and tropical Africa get during an entire year. We also get a great look at the stark contrast between tropical Africa and the Sahara.
EUMETSAT already has a couple of cool moments for their 2016 video. The massive blizzard earlier this month brought tons of snow to the mid-Atlantic and was clearly seen from space.
And, we had a rare January hurricane.
Image credits: NASA