Terror of Oklahoma twister revealed in infrared satellite image

NASA satellite sends back an infrared photo that reveals new details in the aftermath of the Oklahoma tornado's path of destruction.

Charles Cooper Former Executive Editor / News
Charles Cooper was an executive editor at CNET News. He has covered technology and business for more than 25 years, working at CBSNews.com, the Associated Press, Computer & Software News, Computer Shopper, PC Week, and ZDNet.
Charles Cooper
Infrared light reveals the tornado's path of destruction through central Oklahoma. NASA Earth Observatory

We know the official stats: At least 24 people dead, 377 injured, and 33,000 somehow affected -- as a tornado ripped through central Oklahoma on May 20 destroying over 13,000 structures in the space of 39 minutes. Now a new infrared image, courtesy of NASA's Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer on the Terra satellite, offers a deeper look at the devastation wrought by one of the deadliest tornadoes to hit the United States.

In the above image, you can make out the tornado track, which appears as a beige stripe running west to east. Water is represented by blue, buildings and street surfaces appear as blue-gray, and red signals the presence of vegetation.