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Incredible Lightning Photos of the Eye of Bansi From the International Space Station

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One of the most incredible photographs ever of a tropical cyclone was taken this week of Tropical Cyclone Bansi in the South Indian Ocean, which peaked as a Category 4 storm with 150 mph winds two separate times, on January 13 and on January 16. Lightning within an intense thunderstorm in the eyewall of the storm lit up the eye at night, which was captured on the International Space Station by Astronaut Sam Cristoforetti in the photos below. Bansi grazed the French island of La Reunion, off the coast of Madagascar, on January 13. The storm dumped up to 22 inches of rain, according to RSMC-Tropical Cyclone Centre La Reunion, the official agency for monitoring tropical cyclones in the southwest Indian Ocean. More populated areas of the island picked up 6 -10 inches of rain. La Reunion is notorious for its incredible rains from tropical cyclones, due to its steep volcanic terrain and location in the Southwest Indian Ocean's "hurricane alley." According to the World Meteorological Organization, world rainfall records that have been set there include:

 

http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comment.html?entrynum=2897

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