NASA’s aircraft soars in PH skies to study weather, climate science

Aileen Cerrudo   •   August 28, 2019   •   1496

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has already begun its two-month-long investigation on the impact of smoke from fires and pollution on clouds to improve weather and climate forecasts.

Their P3 billion science aircraft soared into the the Philippine skies on August 25.

“Numerous studies have linked the presence of pollution and smoke from agricultural fires and fires from deforestation to changes in cloud and storm properties, but we lack the observations of the actual mechanisms taking place,” said NRL research meteorologist Jeffrey Reid. 

NASA aims to their intensify studies on weather, and climate science with Philippine agencies including the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).

NASA has also partnered with the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) and the Manila Observatory.

NASA has launched the campaign, Cloud, Aerosol, and Monsoon Processes Philippines Experiment (CAMP2Ex) in Southeast Asia to study the relationship between aerosol particles as they interact with surrounding monsoon meteorology, cloud microphysics and the sun’s radiation.

The campaign will also cover Sumatra, Malay Peninsula, Borneo, and Sulawesi.

According to Radiation Sciences Program Manager at NASA Headquarters in Washington Hal Maring, aerosol particles can affect clouds and precipitation, but they still don’t have a quantitative understanding of the said processes.

Aerosol particles include sea salt, dust, air pollutants and biomass-burning smoke particles, and nearly all can act as cloud condensation nuclei (also known as cloud seeds). 

“Our goal is to improve satellite products and numerical models to help scientists better predict weather and climate,” he said.—AAC

Tropical depression expected to enter PAR on Thursday

Marje Pelayo   •   September 12, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Tropical Depression outside the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) has slightly intensified, according to the state weather service PAGASA.

As of PAGASA’s 4:00 AM bulletin, the trough of the tropical depression is now affecting Southern Luzon and Visayas.

On Thursday (September 12), cloudy skies with scattered to widespread rainshowers and thunderstorms will be experienced specifically in CALABARZON, Bicol Region, MIMAROPA, Visayas, Zamboanga Peninsula, Aurora, Quirino, Isabela, and Cagayan.

According to the latest data from PAGASA, the center of the tropical depression was observed at 1,495 km East of Visayas with maximum sustained winds of 55 km/h and gustiness of up to 70 km/hour while moving east-northeastward at a speed of 15km/hour.

The weather system is forecast to enter PAR within 48 hrs and will be named “Marilyn”.

This weather disturbance is less likely to make landfall in the country.

Meanwhile, partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers will prevail over Metro Manila and the rest of the country due to localized thunderstorms.

‘Liwayway’ exits PAR; Southwest monsoon to bring rains to Luzon

Robie de Guzman   •   September 5, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Typhoon Liwayway still continues to intensify even after it exited the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR)on Thursday afternoon, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said.

In its 5 p.m. weather bulletin, PAGASA said Liwayway was last spotted at 630 kilometers north northeast of Basco, Batanes, packing maximum sustained winds of 175 kilometers per hour (kph) with gustiness of up to 215 kph.

It is moving north at the speed of 15 kph.  

PAGASA said occasional gusty winds may still be felt in Batanes, Babuyan Islands, Ilocos and Cordillera Administrative Regions due to the southwest monsoon (habagat).

It will also bring scattered light to moderate rains with at times heavy rain showers during thunderstorms over Ilocos Region, Cordillera, Zambales and Bataan.

The state weather bureau warned residents in these areas to take precautionary measures against possible flooding and landslides.

Meanwhile, the low pressure area east of Mindanao has exited the PAR, the PAGASA said.

But its trough may still bring cloudy skies with possible scattered rains and isolated thunderstorms over Central Visayas, Eastern Visayas, Caraga, Northern Mindanao, Davao region and Soccsksargen.

Sea travel remains risky, especially for small seacrafts, over the seaboards of Northern Luzon and the western seaboard of Central Luzon due to potentially rough sea conditions.

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Monsoon rains still affecting Luzon after TS Falcon’s exit

Marje Pelayo   •   July 19, 2019

File photo

MANILA, Philippines – Tropical storm Falcon (international name Danas) has exited the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) yet monsoon rains will still affect most parts of Luzon.

As of 4:00 am on Friday, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said cloudy skies with scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms will prevail over Metro Manila, Cordillera Administrative Region, CALABARZON, MIMAROPA, and the rest of Central Luzon and Cagayan Valley.

Likewise, the southwest monsoon or habagat will continue to affect the regions of Ilocos, Batanes, Babuyan Group of Islands, Zambales, and Bataan.

The rest of the country will experience partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers brought about by localized thunderstorms.

Meanwhile, the new low pressure area (LPA) that PAGASA has been monitoring remains outside PAR and has no direct effect yet to the country.

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