Public Release: 

NASA sees Tropical Depression 26W form and quickly unravel

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Tropical Depression 26W formed early on Oct. 19 and by late morning the storm was already coming unraveled in NASA satellite imagery.

The twenty-sixth tropical depression of the Northwestern Pacific Ocean tropical cyclone season has formed in the South China Sea. It's unusual for a tropical cyclone to form in the South China Sea and move east as Tropical Depression 26W is doing.

On Oct. 19 at 5 a.m. EDT (0900 UTC) Tropical Depression 26W (26W) formed near 10.9 degrees north latitude and 118.0 degrees east longitude. That's about 283 nautical miles southwest of Manila, Philippines. 26W was moving to the northeast at 10 knots. Maximum sustained winds were near 25 knots.

The Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) said "Animated multispectral satellite imagery shows the system has become disorganized as the low level circulation unraveled and the convection sheared westward."

The MODIS instrument aboard NASA's Aqua satellite provided a visible image of Tropical Depression 26W on Oct. 19 at 1:45 a.m. EDT (05:45 UTC). The image showed the system's clouds over the central Philippines and it was difficult to pinpoint the center of circulation.

JWTC said "Upper level analysis indicates the system is in an area of strong 25-knot easterly vertical wind shear and subsidence associated with the outflow from typhoon 25w 795 nautical miles to the east-northeast. Due to the harsh environment, td 26w is expected to dissipate [by 5 p.m. EDT on Oct. 19] as it drags across the central Philippine Archipelago."

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