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Weekly Wrap-Up: Typhoon Vongfong Aims at Japan Following Phanfone

Following the deadly, and destructive force unleashed by Phanfone earlier in the week, Typhoon Vongfong continues on its trek towards Japan's mainland.

Phanfone made landfall around 8:15 a.m. JST Monday near Hamamatsu, bringing winds up to 144 kph (90 mph) and gusts up to 185 kph (115 mph).

The deadly storm, which has claimed at least one life, prompted the evacuation of 400,000 people, cut power to thousands and injured dozens.

Typhoon Vongfong, meaning "the wasp" in Cantonese, continued to churn in the western Pacific Friday, just east of Taiwan.

Vongfong was classified as a super typhoon during the middle of the week. The tropical system had reached the equivalent strength of a Category 5 hurricane, featuring wind speeds greater than 257 kph (160 mph).

"Vongfong became the strongest tropical cyclone we've had all year anywhere on Earth," Meteorologist Jim Andrews said.

While some uncertainty still remains in the exact path of the powerful typhoon, confidence is becoming increasingly high that the powerful cyclone will track very close or over Okinawa Saturday night, local time, before making landfall in mainland Japan by early next week.

The potent typhoon will bring life-threatening conditions to many over the course of the next few days.

"Destructive winds and flooding rain will be the top threats," Andrews said. "The threats are the same as they were with Phanfone. There are some likenesses but also some differences in Phanfone's track. The results can vary markedly with small differences in track and storm speed."

While Vongfong continues to churn in the Western Pacific, a tropical cyclone, which formed in the Bay of Bengal earlier this week, will threaten India.

Tropical Cyclone Hudhud, formally known as Cyclone 3B, is the first organized tropical system in the Bay of Bengal since the middle of May. This is also only the second named cyclone of the northern Indian Ocean season. meteorologists believe that this developing cyclone will track west-northwest across the Bay of Bengal in an environment that will allow the storm to strengthen into the strongest cyclone of the year in the northern Indian Ocean.

Areas from Kakinada in northern Andhra Pradesh northward to Ratanpur in Odisha should closely monitor this potential cyclone for possible impacts into this weekend. Flooding rain and damaging winds will be possible.

A rare astronomical event also occurred this week and was visible in the United States.

A lunar eclipse or blood moon, dotted skies across the world with a copper, glowing moon on Oct. 8.

The spectacle is also known as a blood moon because of the red color that is cast upon it by light refracting in Earth's atmosphere.

During Wednesday's celestial event, the moon lined up with the Earth and the sun, becoming progressively redder between 5:15 a.m. EDT when it entered Earth's shadow and 6:25 a.m. EDT when it become totally eclipsed. Stargazers on the West Coast and East Coast saw the eclipse unfold at the exact same time, but the moon was lower in the sky in the East as the moon began to set while it was eclipsed. For those in the East, a clear westward vantage point was needed to catch the final moments before moonset and sunrise.

Also on Wednesday, a fleeting but devastating microburst slammed parts of Easthampton, Massachusetts, in the early morning hours, flattening trees and battering homes.

Just before 5 a.m. EDT, 100-mph winds pushed through Hampshire County, destroying trees along a pathway estimated to be a mile long.

A microburst is a small column of exceptionally intense and localized sinking air that results in a violent out-rush of air at the ground. The phenomenon is often destructive with straight-line winds that can flatten trees and cause significant structural damage.

Several Meteorologists and Staff Writers contributed content to this article.