Published on 8 November 2019
Tropical Cyclone Maha has taken a sharp turn over the Arabian Sea and is now poised to brush India’s west coast on November 7, 2019. By landfall, forecasters expect the storm to have weakened from its extremely severe peak on November 4, which was when the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite acquired this natural-color image. At the time, sustained winds measured 185 kilometers (115 miles) per hour—the equivalent of a category 3 storm on the Saffir-Simpson wind scale.
Considered in isolation, there’s nothing particularly unusual about Maha. However, in the context of the season and the basin, it is the latest in a series of strong tropical cyclones in an area that typically doesn’t see many. In fact, the North Indian basin is usually the least active in the Northern Hemisphere.