Daily Archives: 01/15/2005

Huygens Lands On Titan

Image taken by Huygens from about 8 km above the surface of TitanWhat a thrilling day for science. After seven long years mated to the NASA’s Cassini orbiter, ESA’s Huygens lander probe successfully parachuted to the surface of Saturn’s mysterious moon Titan. The first pictures released by the European Space Agency show what appears to be river channel cutting through a hilly landscape to a dark shoreline. Speculation abounds about what the liquid is on Titan’s surface; is it liquid methane, some other hydrocarbon, or perhaps tar? It certainly isn’t water since the temperature on Titan is -178° C, or -288° F. In fact the only picture released from the surface shows large boulder of water ice strewn about a gloomy field.

It never ceases to amaze me that we are able to do such things. This probe has literally gone where no man has gone before. It boggles my mind to think of the calculations involved in placing this thing on Titan, billions of miles away – calculations that were made over seven years ago involving myriad loops around Venus, Earth and Jupiter to reach the moving target of Saturn, only to engage in another series of looping orbits and course corrections. My mind is spinning just thinking about it.

Guam On Storm Watch

The latest bulletin is out from the National Weather Service Office. Guam remains in a tropical storm watch. The governor placed Guam in Condition 3 at 11:00 am on Friday. Here’s the bullet points associated with Condition 3:

  • Damaging winds may arrive within 48 hours
  • Review, update your family disaster plan
  • Buy & replenish supplies for your disaster supply kit
  • Fill up car(s) with gas
  • Secure outdoor objects
  • Prepare household for long term power & water loss (laundry, outdoor cooking, etc.)
  • Tune into radio and / or television

The latest storm track projection from the Joint Typhoon Warning Center shows the Tropical Storm 01W passing withing 29 nautical miles of the island of Guam on Monday morning. What really worries me is their prediction that it will reach typhoon strength (winds of 74 mph or greater) at that time. That would really suck.

WTPQ31 PGUM 150058 TCPPQ1
BULLETIN
TROPICAL STORM 01W INTERMEDIATE ADVISORY NUMBER 5A
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TIYAN GU
11 AM GUAM LST SAT JAN 15 2005

TROPICAL STORM 01W INTENSIFYING WEST OF CHUUK

A TROPICAL STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR SATAWAL AND FARAULEP OF YAP STATE...AND ULUL OF CHUUK STATE.

A TROPICAL STORM WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR PULUWAT OF CHUUK STATE...WOLEAI OF YAP STATE...AND GUAM..ROTA..TINIAN AND SAIPAN OF THE MARIANAS.

A TROPICAL STORM WARNING MEANS THAT TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS... INCLUDING TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS OF 39 MPH OR MORE...ARE EXPECTED WITHIN THE NEXT 24 HOURS. A TROPICAL STORM WATCH MEANS THAT TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS ARE POSSIBLE WITHIN THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

AT 10 AM GUAM LST..0000Z..THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM 01W WAS LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 7.5 DEGREES NORTH AND LONGITUDE 146.3 DEGREES EAST. THIS IS ABOUT...
55 MILES WEST OF SATAWAL
190 MILES WEST OF PULUWAT
240 MILES WEST-SOUTHWEST OF ULUL
140 MILES EAST-SOUTHEAST OF FARAULEP
165 MILES EAST OF WOLEAI
425 MILES SOUTH-SOUTHEAST OF GUAM
460 MILES SOUTH OF ROTA
520 MILES SOUTH OF TINIAN
525 MILES SOUTH OF SAIPAN.

TROPICAL STORM 01W IS MOVING WEST-NORTHWEST AT 12 MPH. MORE NORTHWARD TRACK IS EXPECTED WITH A SLIGHT INCREASE IN FORWARD SPEED OVER THE NEXT 24 HOURS.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS ARE 40 MPH. TROPICAL STORM 01W IS FORECAST TO INTENSIFY OVER THE NEXT 24 HOURS.

DAMAGING WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 115 MILES FROM THE CENTER.

REPEATING THE 10 AM POSITION...7.5 DEGREES NORTH AND 146.3 DEGREES EAST MOVING WEST-NORTHWEST AT 12 MPH WITH MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS OF 40 MPH.

FOR STORM INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO YOUR LOCAL AREA...REFER TO TROPICAL STORM 01W LOCAL STATEMENT /WTPQ81 PGUM/ AND PRODUCTS FROM YOUR LOCAL WEATHER OFFICE.

THE NEXT SCHEDULED ADVISORY WILL BE ISSUED BY THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AT 2 PM GUAM LST FOLLOWED BY AN INTERMEDIATE ADVISORY AT 5 PM GUAM LST.

AHN

So I guess I better head out into the yard to collect furniture and plants. Another weekend spent getting ready for a typhoon, I don’t know how many times this has happened.