NASA: It is happening now - Está sucediendo ahora - United States - 18-05-11 - Rising Waters on the Lower Mississippi - Floodwaters near Natchez - Morganza Floodway 1973

Posted by ricardo marcenaro | Posted in | Posted on 17:53



Open your mind, your heart to other cultures
Abra su mente, su corazón a otras culturas
You will be a better person
Usted será una mejor persona
RM


Rising Waters on the Lower Mississippi

Rising Waters on the Lower Mississippi
acquired May 15, 2011
Rising Waters on the Lower Mississippi
acquired April 29, 2011
Rising Waters on the Lower Mississippi acquired May 4, 2010


Though less obvious than flooding in the north, waters were rising steadily on the Lower Mississippi River in mid-May 2011. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured these images of the area on May 15, 2011 (top), April 29, 2011 (middle), and May 4, 2010 (bottom). The images from 2011 show flooded conditions, and the image from 2010 shows more normal conditions.
All three images use a combination of visible and infrared light to increase contrast between water and land. Water is navy. Vegetation is green. Bare ground is brown. Clouds are pale blue-green and cast shadows. The darker hues in the image from 2010 likely result from the angle of the satellite sensor.
Between late April and mid-May 2011, these images show water rising visibly north and south of Natchez, and around Morganza, where a spillway is located. Even though the city is in major flood stage, flooding is not yet visible around Baton Rouge.
The Advanced Hydrological Prediction Service (AHPS) of the U.S. National Weather Service reported that the Mississippi River at Natchez reached 61.21 feet (18.66 meters) at 11:00 a.m. CDT on May 16. This was well in excess of the record for that locality, set in 1937 at 58.04 feet (17.69 meters). The AHPS also reported that the Mississippi River at Baton Rouge reached 44.42 feet (13.54 meters) at 11:00 a.m. CDT on May 16. This level was below the city’s record flood level of 47.28 feet (14.41 meters) set in 1927. As of May 16, the Mississippi River was projected to continue rising at Natchez and, to a lesser degree, at Baton Rouge.
  1. References

  2. National Weather Service. Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service. Accessed May 16, 2011.
NASA images courtesy MODIS Rapid Response Team, Goddard Space Flight Center. Caption by Michon Scott.
Instrument: 
Aqua - MODIS

Floodwaters near Natchez

Floodwaters near Natchez
acquired May 11, 2011

Floodwaters near Natchez

acquired April 21, 2007

On May 13, 2011, the Mississippi River was approaching a record level at the city of Vicksburg, Mississippi, and had exceeded the previous record at Natchez, Miss. The Advanced Hydrological Prediction Service (AHPS) reported that the river reached 55.45 feet (16.90 meters) at 3:00 p.m. Central Daylight Time at Vicksburg, and 59.87 feet (18.25 meters) at 2:00 p.m. CDT at Natchez. The previous record for Natchez, set in 1937, was 58.04 feet (17.69 meters). The AHPS forecast that water levels would continue to rise in both locations.
The Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured these false-color images of the area around Natchez on May 11, 2011 (top), and April 21, 2007 (bottom).
The images combine infrared, red, and green wavelengths to form a false-color image that distinguishes between muddy water and land. Water is blue, and sediment-laden water is a dull blue-green. Vegetation is red, and the brighter the red, the more robust the vegetation. Red and gray patches west of the river (top edge of each image) are agricultural fields. Clouds are white, and cast shadows onto the land surface below.
In May 2011, the Mississippi River pushed over its banks onto floodplains. In some places, the flood waters almost reached oxbow lakes along the river.
On May 12, 2011, the Natchez Democrat reported that the city was on level two of a four-level evacuation plan. At level two, residents are encouraged to plan for an evacuation by gathering personal belongings that would be irreplaceable in the event of a flood. The paper further reported that authorities were gathering lists of elderly or homebound people so they could be safely moved in an evacuation.
  1. References

  2. Hogan, V. (2011, May 12).1937 flood record now broken. Natchez Democrat. Accessed May 13, 2011.
  3. National Weather Service. Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service. Accessed May 13, 2011.
NASA Earth Observatory image created by Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon, using data provided courtesy of NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team. Caption by Michon Scott.

Instrument: 
Terra - ASTER

Morganza Floodway, 1973

Morganza Floodway, 1973
  acquired May 5, 1973
 Morganza Floodway, 1973
acquired April 6, 1977


As flood waters continued to surge through the Mississippi River watershed in May 2011, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers weighed whether to open spill gates onto the Morganza Floodway. The floodway, designed to reduce water levels in the Mississippi during emergencies, was last open from April 19 to June 13, 1973, the only time it has ever been opened.
The top image shows water flowing through the floodway on May 5, 1973, as observed by Landsat 1. The bottom image from Landsat 2 shows the same area in 1977 without flooding. The images include near-infrared, red, and green wavelengths of light. Vegetation appears red, muddy water is greenish brown, clear water is blue-black, and bare soil is gray to tan. In the 1973 image, red areas within the floodway may include vegetation (red) tall enough to stand above the flood water.
The floodway lies on the west side of the Mississippi, about 35 miles (56 kilometers) north of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. It averages five miles (8 kilometers) in width and stretches 20 miles (32 kilometers) to the southwest. Completed in 1954, the flood control structure, or spillway, was built to relieve stress on levees further downstream by diverting excess water from the river into the Atchafalaya River Basin.
According to the Army Corps of Engineers, the spillway was designed to maintain a Mississippi River flow rate of no greater than 1.5 million cubic feet per second at Red River Landing. The spillway is roughly 4,000 feet (1,219 meters) long, includes 125 gated openings, and has the capacity to move roughly 600,000 cubic feet of flood water per second.
The Army Corps notes on its web site: “The decision to open the Morganza Floodway relies on current and projected river flows and levee conditions, river currents and potential effects on navigation and revetments, extended rain and stage forecasts, and the duration of high river stages. When river flows at the Red River Landing are predicted to reach 1.5 million cubic feet per second and rising, the Corps considers opening the Morganza Floodway.” At 7 a.m. Central Daylight Time on May 13, 2011, the Army Corps estimated flow rates were 1.449 million cubic feet per second.
The Mississippi River has the third largest drainage basin in the world., behind only the Congo and the Amazon. It drains 41 percent of the 48 contiguous United States, including all or part of 31 states and two Canadian provinces. Extreme floods along the Mississippi in 1927 floods led the U.S. Congress to pass to the Flood Control Act of 1928, authorizing construction of levees, floodways, and other landscape modifications to control the flow of the Mississippi River.
  1. References

  2. NASA (n.d.) Landsat 1. Accessed May 13, 2011.
  3. NASA (n.d.) Landsat 2. Accessed May 13, 2011.
  4. NOAA (n.d.) Mississippi River Flood History 1543-Present. Accessed May 13, 2011.
  5. The Shreveport Times (2011, May 13) Water nears top of Morganza floodgates. Accessed May 13, 2011.
  6. The Times-Picayune (2011, May 13) Jindal says Morganza Floodway to open Saturday or Sunday; tells parishes to begin evacuation notifications. Accessed May 13, 2011.
  7. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (n.d.) Morganza Floodway. Accessed May 13, 2011.
  8. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (n.d.) Morganza Floodway Video. Accessed May 13, 2011.
NASA Earth Observatory image by Robert Simmon, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey Global Visualization Viewer.

Instrument: 
Landsat 1 (ERTS)


 NASA: It is happening now - Está sucediendo ahora - United States - 18-05-11 - Rising Waters on the Lower Mississippi - Floodwaters near Natchez - Morganza Floodway 1973



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