Incredible Satellite Image of Super Typhoon Haiyan Bearing Down on the Philippines


This unbelievable satellite photograph shows the sheer horrifying magnitude of Typhoon Haiyan, the terrible tropical cyclone that caused unimaginable damage to the Philippines yesterday (you can see the full resolution image here).

The image was taken on November 7th at 8am Eastern Standard Time by the Japan Meteorological Agency and EUMETSAT (the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites), and it really is difficult to fathom the magnitude of the storm it captured.

Typhoon Haiyan ripped through six Islands in the Philippines yesterday, making landfall with wind speeds in excess of 147 mph and gusts of up to 170 mph (some estimates are even higher: 195-mph winds and gusts up to 235 mph) making it comparable to a category 4 hurricane (5 is the highest).

According to the United Nations World Food Programme, two-and-a-half million people may now be in need of food aid, and the most recent estimates have the death toll exceeding 1,200.


News outlets with correspondents in the area are describing the destruction as “widespread and catastrophic,” and so while we as a photography site take this opportunity to share an incredible photograph with you, the reason behind it is far more than photographic in nature.

If you find that you can help, please do. The super typhoon comes less than a month after a devastating earthquake hit parts of the Philippines, leaving many with only tents and makeshift shelters as protection when the storm hit. There are several ways you can help. According to the Weather Channel:

Donation mechanisms have already been put into place. ISF Philippines tweeted that by texting RED <10, 25, 50 or 100> to 4143, you can donate to the PRC. The British Red Cross also created an appeals page that has already started accepting contributions. To give to the PRC directly, visit the organization’s online portal.

So take a look at the jaw-dropping full-resolution image, try and wrap your mind around the magnitude of what you’re looking at, and then, if you are able, please head over to any of the previously linked charities and help in any way you can.

(via Business Insider)

Image credits: Photograph Copyright 2013 JMA/EUMETSAT


    Nice post and I have contributed. One thing though… you need to fact-check better. This was no category 4. It has been deemed the most powerful storm (hurricane/typhoon) to have every struck the planet in recorded history. It’s winds were recorded at well above a category 5 level.

  • Joseph

    This makes Sandy look like a thunderstorm.

  • secoer

    So, what’s the yellow stand for? The city lights at night? it’s like some gold fall out on the ground

  • Four Letter Nerd

    Hey DL Cade, think you used enough hyperbole to describe the photo? BTW, Incredible and unbelievable are synonyms.

  • krz

    It would be the city lights since the typhoon made landfall at 4:00AM, Philippine time.

  • anon

    “making it comparable to a category 4 hurricane (5 is the highest).” – and it’s not even a hurricane. Imagine that. Holy nature.

  • kenneth escalona

    The Day After Tomorrow kind of thing. Death toll expected to be 10,000.
    The Power of Nature.


    This is inaccurate reporting by PetaPixel. I tried to point it out to them. But, in the end, they are a photography site, not a news organization. But it would be nice if they could at least take care enough to be accurate.

    First, Hurricanes and Typhoons are the same thing. It just depends where it forms (west of the int. date line is a typhoon, east is a hurricane.

    Second, the category is “off-the-scale” according to meteorologists. It is the most powerful cyclonic storm (generic term for hurricane or typhoon) on recorded record. If there was a category 6, they say this would be it.

    That is why it completely devastated the region. 195 mph sustained and 235 mph gusts. That is like a medium strength tornado (which have internal winds over 300 mph).


    I am puzzled as to why you’re still going with a category 4 rating?

  • Matt

    I thought it’s winds slowed to that level when it made land. And was expected to regain strenght once it was in the China sea.
    Still, an immense storm and the damage it did reminded me of the Tsunami.


    They do slow down when it reaches landfall. But, the higher speeds were the landfall speeds… the highest ever recorded on land for a non-tornado. Scary, scary, scary!