Yutu (Northwestern Pacific Ocean)

Oct. 22, 2018 – NASA Tracks Tropical Storm Yutu, Warnings Posted

NASA-NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite passed over the Northwestern Pacific Ocean and captured a visible image of Tropical Storm Yutu as warnings were posted. A typhoon watch is in force for Tinian and Saipan and a tropical storm watch is in force for Rota.

Suomi NPP image of Yutu
On Oct. 21 NASA-NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite captured a visible image of Tropical Storm Yutu, north of Papau New Guinea and east of Guam. Credit:  NASA Worldview, Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) /NOAA

The National Weather Service in Tiyan, Guam noted that residents of Guam, Alamagan, Pagan and Agrihan should continue to monitor the progress of Tropical Storm Yutu.

Tropical Depression 31 developed on Monday, Oct. 22 at 2 a.m. CHST (Guam local time) and rapidly intensified into a tropical storm.

On Oct. 22, the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) instrument aboard NASA-NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite passed over Yutu and captured a visible image of the storm. VIIRS showed an organized storm with strong thunderstorms circling the center and in bands feeding into the center from the south and east.

At 1 a.m. CHST (local time) on Oct. 23 (11 a.m. EDT/1500 UTC on Oct. 22) the center of Tropical Storm Yutu was located near latitude 10.9 degrees north and longitude 153.3 degrees east. That’s about 255 miles north-northeast of Chuuk and about 585 miles east-southeast of Saipan.

Maximum sustained winds have increased to 50 mph. Yutu will continue to intensify through Wednesday, possibly becoming a typhoon later today. Tropical storm force winds extend outward from the center up to 80 miles to the southwest and up to 150 miles elsewhere.

Yutu is moving northwest at 16 mph and is expected to continue its northwest motion through Thursday, but the National Weather Service in Guam said its forward speed will decrease slightly today and tonight. This forecast keeps Yutu on a track that will pass just north of Saipan late Wednesday night or Thursday morning, Oct. 24 local time.

For updated forecasts, visit: http://www.prh.noaa.gov/guam/cyclone.php

By Rob Gutro
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center