How high above Hurricane Florence did the International Space Station have to be in order to take a picture of the whole storm?

Answer: 400 km.

by / September 13, 2018
This photo provided by NASA shows Hurricane Florence from the International Space Station on Monday, Sept. 10, 2018, as it threatens the U.S. East Coast. Forecasters said Florence could become an extremely dangerous major hurricane sometime Monday and remain that way for days. AP

In case anyone needed any further confirmation that this storm is massive, astronaut Alexander Gerst aboard the International Space Station tweeted photos Wednesday morning from directly above the eye of the storm.

According to Gerst’s tweet, the station was 400 km above Florence at the time. That’s about 248.5 miles, or over a million feet. At that distance, the ISS astronaut still needed a super wide-angle lens in order to get the entirety of the swirling mass into the frame. And the resulting images are astounding.

 

 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Weather Service also weighed in on the storm via Twitter early Wednesday morning. The organization posted a time-lapse GIF of the sunrise over the storm and eastern coast of North America.