Explanation: Light-years in length, this cosmic tornado is actually a powerful jet cataloged as HH (Herbig-Haro) 49/50 blasting down from the top of a Spitzer Space Telescope view. Though such energetic outflows are well known to be associated with the formation of young stars, the exact cause of the spiraling structures apparent in this case is still mysterious. The embryonic star responsible for the 100-kilometer per second jet is located just off the top of the picture, while the bright star seen near the tip of the jet may just by chance lie along the line of sight. In the false-color infrared image, the tornado glows with infrared light generated as the outflow heats surrounding dust clouds. The color coding shows a trend from red to blue hues at the tornado's tip indicating a systematic increase in emission at shorter wavelengths. The trend is thought to indicate an increase in molecular excitation closer to where the head of the jet is impacting interstellar gas. HH49/50 is about 450 light-years distant, located in the Chamaeleon I molecular cloud.
The National Hurricane Center is watching three storms in the Atlantic Ocean, but none is expected to intensify significantly right now.
A new system has formed off the African coast, and is being called Tropical Storm Melissa.
The disturbance is moving east at about 13 mph, with maximum sustained winds of 40 mph.
Tropical Storm Karen was ripped apart by wind sheer throughout the week and now is a disorganized mass. Its remnants are slowly moving across the Atlantic Ocean, about 475 miles east of the Leeward Islands.
The National Hurricane Center doesn't expect the storm to regenerate in the coming days.
In Southwest Florida, temperatures will remain at 90 degrees for the coming week, with the daily chance of rain around 40 percent.
The greatest bet for afternoon rain could be Tuesday or Wednesday, as forecasters are anticipating a 60 percent chance of scattered thunderstorms. The daytime high temperature will be about 90 degrees.
Tropical Storm Juliette
Tropical Storm Juliette formed in the Pacific Ocean off Mexico and was forecast to whirl along off the Baja California peninsula over the next few days, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said on Sunday.
Juliette was carrying maximum sustained winds of 45 mph (72 kph) and was more than 350 miles southwest of the peninsula.
The center described Juliette as a "weaker storm" that could lose force as it hit cooler waters.
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