Severe thunderstorms produced heavy rains over parts of southeastern
Australia as well as numerous cloud-to-ground lightning that resulted
in several people being struck. High pressure off of the east coast
of Australia pumped warm humid air southward down from the tropics
ahead of an advancing cold front, a scenario favorable for thunderstorm
development. The TRMM-based, near-real-time Multi-satellite
Precipitation Analysis (MPA) at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
shows rainfall totals for the period November 29-December 3, 2003.
Widespread 1 to 3 inch (25 to 76 millimeters) amounts are shown from western New South Wales
inland to near Melbourne and Canberra along the southeast coast (green
areas). Locally heavier accumulations for the period appear north-
northwest of Melbourne in red (8.8 inches, or 225 millimeters). Overlaid on the rainfall totals are
lightning data from the TRMM Lightning Imaging Sensor (LIS). The
clusters of white dots indicate areas of lightning activity observed by
LIS during a single TRMM overpass on December 3, 2003. These include cloud-to-cloud, cloud-to-ground, and intracloud flashes.
TRMM is a joint mission between NASA and the Japanese space agency NASDA.
Image produced by Hal Pierce (SSAI/NASA GSFC) and caption by Steve Lang