The above are satellite photos taken over Joplin. The right half of the image shows what it looked like before the tornado this past Sunday, and the left image shows the same area afterward.
As you can see, there is a large brown swath of significant damage running from the lower right to the upper left corner of the "after" image.
I'm struggling a bit with the grey "blotches" on the upper half of the "after" image. I can't tell if those are passing clouds at the time the photo was taken, or if they are suction vortex spots. A suction vortex is (as the name implies) an embedded vortex within the body of the main tornado that literally sucks everything up like a vacuum cleaner. The ground can literally be stripped right down to the dirt, even beneath concrete. There were no doubt suction vorticies in the Joplin tornado (based on other damage photos and video that I've seen), but I want to examine this and a few other photos taken by the same satellite on my better computer at home before drawing any final conclusions. I am also going to try to match this photo up with some areal damage video that I've just received as well.
I'll post the other photos and areal video after I've been able to take a better look at them.
For more information on the Joplin tornado, please see my original post here (which is being updated as new information comes forward or is reviewed).