As Hurricane Florence rumbles towards the east coast of the United States, European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Alexander Gerst snapped a few eerily beautiful images of the storm system from his perch aboard the International Space Station.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) began tracking the tropical wave (an elongated trough of low air pressure) that developed into Hurricane Florence on August 28, 2018. They continued to track it as it progressed from just off the coast of Senegal to the east coast of the United States. According to the NHC, Florence is likely to make landfall along the South Carolina coast early Friday morning with wind speeds expected of being between 119 and 177 kph (74 to 110 mph).
From his perch aboard the International Space Station orbiting 400 kilometres (250 miles) above Earth, Alexander Gerst has the perfect view of the surging storm system. Over two separate tweets, Gerst shared breathtaking images of Hurricane Florence with a warning for anyone in its path. “Get prepared on the East Coast, this is a no-kidding nightmare coming for you,” he said.
Gerst arrived aboard the international space outpost on 8 June 2018. Along with NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor and Russian cosmonaut Sergei Prokopyev, the three completed the station’s Expedition 56 crew. The German-born astronaut is also set to become the station’s Commander for the duration of Expedition 57.