On July 28, as the rain began to fall over Pakistan, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument on NASA's Aqua spacecraft flew over the Pakistan, capturing this image of the bright white thunderstorm clouds that would eventually drop more than 16 inches of rain over the region on July 28 and 29, triggering massive flooding of the Indus and Kabul rivers.
The blue vertical line across the image represents the path of CloudSat at the time the MODIS image was recorded. CloudSat cut through a large thunderstorm cell in the northern section of the country capturing the the 3D vertical structure of the storm along the satellite's flight path, revealing the heavy precipitation.
CloudSat measured the height of the clouds along the radar's flight path at around 15 kilometers at their thickest.
Heavy rain and thick clouds diminished the CloudSat's signal, and the ground echo, the horizontal red line that represents the topography of the area, completely disappears. As the satellite continued to travel north, moving out of the thickest part of the storm and the heaviest rains, the signal improved and the topography was once again visible.