Hurricane Julia intensified rapidly overnight and is now a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Scale and NASA’s Aqua, Terra and TRMM satellites captured clues as they passed over her from space. The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite passed over intensifying hurricane Julia during the afternoon of Sept. 14 and captured very heavy rain falling at 1807 UTC (2:07 p.m. EDT). That heavy rainfall was a clue that she would intensify overnight, and today, Sept. 15, she has become a Category Four hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Scale.
TRMM’s Precipitation Radar data showed that concentric rain bands circling Julia’s center were dropping heavy rainfall at over 50 mm/hr (~2 inches). TRMM showed that the heaviest rainfall was located in powerful thunderstorms northwest of Julia’s center of circulation.