A horrifying photo was captured by NASA scientist and astronaut, Nick Hague. From his lofty perch above the Earth in the International Space Station, Hague captured an image of the monstrous eye of Hurricane Dorian and shared the image on Twitter.
“You can feel the power of the storm when you stare into its eye from above,” Hague tweeted with the image. “Stay safe everyone!” When Hague took the photograph, the storm was churning as a massive Category 5 before making landfall in the Bahamas. Due to the angle of the image Hague captured, the viewer can see the funnel of the eye straight through to the ocean.
A similar image was captured – but from inside the eye, by Air Force Captain Garret Black as he flew through the storm. In Captain Black’s image, one can clearly make out the eyewall, the massive wall of stormclouds that comprises the eye of the storm. Ironically, the eye of the storm is actually quite peaceful, as hurricanes are powered by the rotational force that goes around it.
Dorian is by far the largest hurricane to form this year, and it has been described as one of the most powerful hurricanes to ever make landfall in the Atlantic Basin. When it touched down in the Bahamas at Category 5 speeds, it tied maximum windspeed records with the 1935 Labor Day Hurricane. In an unfortunate twist of fate, Dorian first made landfall in the Bahamas on Labor Day.
The damage to the Bahamas has been intense: more than 50,000 people live in Grand Bahama, though the island is nearly seventy percent underwater. Thousands of homes have been damaged or destroyed, and numerous seaports and airports in the region have suffered major damage.
People living in the US will soon see a small portion of Dorian’s fury. Though the storm is approaching the southeast as only a Category 2 hurricane, the damage from the storm is still expected to be severe.
Dorian will likely impact Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina before slowly moving northward along the East Coast.