Asia records its hottest temperature in history; Category 4 Phet threatens Oman

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:47 PM GMT on June 02, 2010

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A hellish heat wave hit Pakistan last week, sending the mercury to an astonishing 53.5°C (128.3°F) at the town of MohenjuDaro on Wednesday May 26, reported the Pakistani Meteorological Department. While this temperature reading must be reviewed by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) for authenticity, not only is the 128.3°F reading the hottest temperature ever recorded in Pakistan, it is the hottest reliably measured temperature ever recorded on the continent of Asia. This information comes to me courtesy of Chris Burt, the author of Extreme Weather, who is probably the world's foremost expert on extreme weather records. In a collaborative effort with weather record researchers Maximiliano Herrera and Howard Rainford, Mr. Burt has painstakingly researched the extreme weather records for every country on Earth. They list the previous reliable record high for Asia as the 52.7°C (127°F) temperature measured on June 12, 1919, in the Sindh province of Pakistan. Temperatures exceed 120°F in this region of Pakistan nearly every year, in the late May/early June time frame before the monsoon arrives. Last week's heat wave killed at least 18 Pakistanis, and temperatures in excess of 50°C (122°F) were recorded at nine Pakistani cities on May 26, including 53°C (127.4°F) at Sibi.

All-time hottest temperature for Southeast Asia this month
Record heat also hit Southeast Asia in May. According to the Myanmar Department of Meteorology and Hydrology, Myanmar (Burma) had its hottest temperature in its recorded history on May 12, when the mercury hit 47°C (116.6°F) in Myinmu. Myanmar's previous hottest temperature was 45.8°C (114.4°F) at Minbu, Magwe division on May 9, 1998. According to Mr. Burt, the 47°C (116.6°F) measured on May 12 this year is the hottest temperature measured in Southeast Asia in recorded history.

Bogus extreme temperature records
I'm pleased to say that Chris Burt will be joining wunderground.com as a featured blogger later this year to discuss his work. He's working on a great new website that features weather records for each country of the world, complete with footnotes on disputed records. For example, many record books list Israel as the site of Asia's all-time maximum temperature. Mr. Burt comments: "54°C (129.2°F) has widely been quoted as the highest temperature ever recorded in Israel (and Asia) but there exist serious issues with this record. The temperature was recorded on a thermograph at Tirat Zvi on 21 June 1942. Examination of a copy of this trace (see Bio-Climatic Atlas of Israel by Dr. D. Ashbel, Central Press, Jerusalem, 1950, p.125, Figure 1) actually shows a maximum temperature of 53°C (127.4°F). No explanation is known for this 1°C discrepancy. In comparison with surrounding stations, it is likely that the actual temperature recorded at Tirat Zvi on this data was probably no higher than 52°C (125.6°F), which would be a record high temperature for Israel. Temperatures have reached or exceeded 50°C (122°F) in Israel only during this one episode in 1942.


Figure 1. Temperature trace from Bio-Climatic Atlas of Israel by Dr. D. Ashbel, Central Press, Jerusalem, 1950, p.125 for Tirat Zvi, Israel, the week of June 21, 1942.


Figure 2. Zoom of temperature trace from Bio-Climatic Atlas of Israel by Dr. D. Ashbel, Central Press, Jerusalem, 1950, p.125, for Tirat Zvi, Israel, the week of June 21, 1942. The temperature clearly only reached 53°C, if one reads the graph properly. Thus the 54°C temperature labeled on the graph is not correct.

Mr. Burt comments in his Extreme Weather book that every temperature record for the planet in excess of 129°F can be disputed. All of these records, except for the 134°F recorded at Greenland Ranch in Death Valley, California, were made by French colonial era instruments which were found to be irregular as far as the exposure of the screens used to house the temperature instruments. In some cases, the temperature instrument was housed closer to the ground than it should have been. Mr. Burt will have an in-depth analysis of the evidence later this summer when he begins blogging for us.


Figure 3. Visible satellite image of Tropical Cyclone Phet on Wednesday, June 2, 2010.

Tropical Cyclone Phet the 2nd strongest Arabian Sea storm on record
The record heat over southern Asia in May has helped heat up the Arabian Sea to 2°C above normal. The exceptionally warm SSTs have helped fuel a rare major hurricane in the Arabian Sea today, as Tropical Cyclone Phet underwent an impressive bout of rapid intensification this morning to become a Category 4 storm with 145 mph winds. Phet is a Thai word pronounced as Pet, meaning "Diamond". Intense hurricanes are rare in the Arabian Sea, due to the basin's small size, the interference of the summer monsoon, and the frequent presence of dry air and dust from the Arabian Peninsula. Phet is now the second strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded in the Arabian Sea, behind Category 5 Cyclone Gonu of 2007, which devastated Oman. Third place is held by the 2001 India Cyclone 01A and Very Severe Cyclonic Storm ARB 01 (02A), which were Category 3 storms with 125 mph winds.

Phet is over some of the warmest ocean waters on the planet, 30 - 31°C (86 - 88°F), and warm waters in excess of 26.5°C (80°F) extend to a depth of at least 50 meters (165 feet), resulting in a Tropical Cyclone Heat Potential high enough to allow Phet to attain Category 5 status. Phet is under moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) is forecasting Phet to become a Category 5 storm later today. The storm is moving slowly north-northwest towards Oman, and could ingest dry air from the Arabian Peninsula on Thursday, resulting in weakening. It now appears likely that Phet will make landfall in Oman before recurving to the northeast and hitting Pakistan. The region of Oman likely to get hit is sparsely populated, so wind and storm surge damage will not be the main concerns. Phet will spread heavy rains over the heavily populated northern regions of Oman, which will likely cause extreme flooding. Phet has the potential to be worse for Oman than Tropical Cyclone Gonu, which did $4.2 billion in damage and killed 50 people in June 2007.

Impact on Pakistan
Phet is on track to make landfall in Pakistan or Iran after hitting Oman. Phet will be much weakened by passage over Oman, and may only be a tropical storm after crossing the Gulf of Oman and arriving at the Iran/Pakistan coast. Still, Phet's rains could easily cause destructive floods in Iran and Pakistan.

The strongest tropical cyclone on record to hit Pakistan was Very Severe Cyclonic Storm ARB 01 (02A), which hit near Karachi on May 20, 1999, as a Category 3 storm with 125 mph winds. According to Wikipedia, 02A killed 700 people did $6 million in damage (1999 USD). I've also found references to a December 15, 1965 cyclone that killed 10,000 near Karachi, Pakistan.

Oil spill update
Moderate onshore winds of 10 - 20 knots out of the southeast to southwest are expected to blow over the northern Gulf of Mexico over most of the next week, resulting increased threats of oil to Alabama, Mississippi, and the Florida Panhandle, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA. These persistent southwesterly winds will likely bring oil as far east as Fort Walton Beach, Florida, by Monday.

Oil spill resources
My post, What a hurricane would do the Deepwater Horizon oil spill
My post Wednesday with answers to some of the common questions I get about the spill
My post on the Southwest Florida "Forbidden Zone" where surface oil will rarely go
My post on what oil might do to a hurricane
Gulf Oil Blog from the UGA Department of Marine Sciences
Oil Spill Academic Task Force
University of South Florida Ocean Circulation Group oil spill forecasts
ROFFS Deepwater Horizon page
Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery from the University of Miami

I'll be back Thursday with more on Phet and an analysis of the new Colorado State University hurricane forecast issued by Phil Klotzbach and Bill Gray issued today.

Jeff Masters

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Maybe I should have added that the link was in reference to the oil reaching the Keys.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting asgolfr999:
Okay, well I guess I am not one of the priveleged few who can express them selves on an open forum without the clique ganging up and pushing a supposed outsider away, so back into the shadows I will slink.

Think about it though, I basically said "I am not amused" and the world got ugly.

Just where the hell am I???

Pat?


I been watching I dream of Jeanie..so Im clueless.

But keep posting here..I for one will support ya.

I support everyone who blogs with a purpose,..save for evil.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129778
Whatever floats your boat, I am 50 not 5, and with that rather 5 year old comment...outta here..as far as posting anyway.
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Enhanced Infrared (IR) Imagery (4 km Mercator)
IO032010 - Tropical Cyclone PHET




Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129778
656 900MB "Drill hole 1000 feet below surface next to well. Fill with explosives. Ignite! Stop defending the oil, start defending the gulf!"


3) Even if you explode huge amounts of non-nuclear fluidized explosives pumped down into new wells (which is equivalent to what is done in large-scale open-pit mining) drilled near the leaking well, all you would accomplish is fracturing the solid cap that is currently preventing the oil from coming up even faster. It'd be the equivalent of turning rock into dirt, though the "grains of dirt" would mostly be a lot larger.
And it takes a LOT more pressure to wash away a concrete driveway than to wash away the dirt next to it.

And that's essentially what this leaking well is, a hose on a HIGH pressure washer. A steel hose encased in cement gluing it to the well's rock walls that prevents the uprushing crude oil from scouring away the rock around the pipe with ~2670psi of pressure, prevents the crude from opening up an even wider throat through which the oil deposit can gush even more crude into the Gulf of Mexico.
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Here it comes...Link
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Quoting asgolfr999:


Lotta people down here buddy undergoing a lot of stress...from Grand Isle through Mobile and out to Fort Walton which will probably be impacted tomorrow.

Lotta people.....

Lotta stress.....

Not much joking around to relieve the stress or pop...can I have them call you for a little counselling maybe?


You know, you're sad. If you've spent as much time lurking here as you say you have I would have expected a little less pomposity and a little more understanding from you...I would suppose that's too much to ask, so that leaves me but one option...
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Hey Oz,
Should we add a hazmat suit to our chasing gear?
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Quoting JLPR2:


Looking healthy, impressive for June
early riser
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Quoting CaneWarning:
Does anybody know of a charity in the gulf coast that is helping animals? I wouldn't mind sending some coin their way. I'm sure Portlight isn't involved in this disaster.


actually..are going to be down there with a mobile kitchen feeding clean up volunteers...as for animals, the Audobon Society has been fairly high profile in this situation Thanks!
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it looks as though Haiti has a large storm over them
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Quoting Patrap:
Oil-Zilla...!!




Oil-zilla...love it.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
yes, i have gone thru many stages about the oil spill. and all the really bad predictions about the hurricane season coming up, i cant separate it from the oil. I think the oil spill is a catastrophe, and i think the hurricane season is gonna be a catastrophe, and no way can they not join together and i dont know what the heck is gonna happen but its gonna be horrible i know. and i have been polite and low key on here a while and now i am becoming more and more me and i promise to suppress it when the discussion turns strictly business but man i have posted furiously angry posts, almost in tears posts, depressed posts. now what can you do. i honestly think its all over. they cant even figure out a saw blade down there. the odds of them fixing it is almost zilch. and i am a person who will help all i can where i can. at a meeting this morning i was told oil is 7 miles from pensacola. to me thats the beginning of the end of the worlds most beautiful beaches. we are in a mind boggling mess here. its very disturbing. and funner to think about Oz tumbling around in a cat 5 actually. but i will try to be good for a while!
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Oil-Zilla...!!


Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129778
BritishPetroleum's ChiefExecutiveOfficer just recently got booted UP the ranks from an engineering position (hence the "engineer's foot-in-mouth disease") to correct the "penny wise, pound foolish" problems (that caused BP's image problems and stock value to fall) -- eg the Alaskan pipeline spill -- that got his predecessor fired.

While he probably lived well, I doubt that his income would have made anyone's eyes goggle before he got promoted to CEO. And he really hasn't had time-in-office for long enough to have accumulated the WEALTH that's taken for granted when we think of CEO of a MAJOR corporation.
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662. JLPR2


Looking healthy, impressive for June
Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 7 Comments: 8747
Does anybody know of a charity in the gulf coast that is helping animals? I wouldn't mind sending some coin their way. I'm sure Portlight isn't involved in this disaster.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Quoting asgolfr999:


Lotta people down here buddy undergoing a lot of stress...from Grand Isle through Mobile and out to Fort Walton which will probably be impacted tomorrow.

Lotta people.....

Lotta stress.....

Not much joking around to relieve the stress or pop...can I have them call you for a little counselling maybe?


I am from Mobile to well Satsuma, and you coming on here like this is awful. Yes we have oil on the beaches and N.O. has been dealing with this for a while there self, but to come on here act the way you are is just uncalled for. You need to make ur own blog on how mad you are. We have a lot of good folks in here and there's no need to be upset with them.
Sheri
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Quoting 900MB:


Drill hole 1000 feet below surface next to well. Fill with explosives. Ignite! Stop defending the oil, start defending the gulf!


Kindly. No one is even remotely serious about explosives.

Don't be that guy.
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Quoting 900MB:


Drill hole 1000 feet below surface next to well. Fill with explosives. Ignite! Stop defending the oil, start defending the gulf!


No, it's all about saving the oil. You would think BP would make that less apparent.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
656. 900MB
Quoting twhcracker:


and they are no doubt busy as little bees cutting a big gash in a hydraulic line leading to a robot arm with it as we speak.


Drill hole 1000 feet below surface next to well. Fill with explosives. Ignite! Stop defending the oil, start defending the gulf!
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Actuall all I did was mention to someone who I do not know that their comments were not something I appreciated. She immediately apologised which I appreciated and all the rest from then on has been input from people who should probably have left well alone.

Having watched people on this blog for many years now, i guess i should have known better than to expect anything different...sad really.
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Quoting asgolfr999:
Over nothing....amazing


You have oil washing up on your shore, and you want to come to a weather blog and call out somebody? It seems to me your anger is misplaced. That's all.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Quoting Floodman:


There are times when inanity is the best defense against stress; those that cannot enjoy a little "steam release" are typically those that pop...feeling the need to "pop", my serious friend? Had you spent much time in here watching peop-les responses you would know that cracker has psent an inordiate amount of time worrying about the spill and it's effects on the Gulf Coast. I think she was due a little pressure release...apparently you are too


Lotta people down here buddy undergoing a lot of stress...from Grand Isle through Mobile and out to Fort Walton which will probably be impacted tomorrow.

Lotta people.....

Lotta stress.....

Not much joking around to relieve the stress or pop...can I have them call you for a little counselling maybe?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Navy Site

Better? geez
Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7874
Quoting scott39:
thanks, what does a subtropical jet do to a potential TC?


It tears it apart. When a tropical wave is embedded within the highly convective parts of the ITCZ, it is usually fortified from high wind shear. All tropical cyclones generate their own upper level anticyclone, but it is usually inadequate to guard them from wind shear.
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Over nothing....amazing
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Quoting asgolfr999:


Your comments are no less asinine than those not at all amusing ones that you insist on cluttering up this blog with. For me, you can keep your sarcastic laden "funnies" to yourself.

We now have oil here on the beach at Dauphin Island, and I would sure like BP or anyone else to keep trying, no matter how successfully or not, to clean up this mess and prevent further disaster.

Any ideas, or are you too busy or too far away...???


There are times when inanity is the best defense against stress; those that cannot enjoy a little "steam release" are typically those that pop...feeling the need to "pop", my serious friend? Had you spent much time in here watching peop-les responses you would know that cracker has psent an inordiate amount of time worrying about the spill and it's effects on the Gulf Coast. I think she was due a little pressure release...apparently you are too
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Quoting Hurricanes101:


Its not the wrong link

I am using that link right now

Click your own link. You can't link it this way.
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Quoting twhcracker:


sorry. people were encouraging me and it was like pouring gas on a flame.


I don't think you owe anyone an apology. Some people get way too upset over nothing.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Quoting winter123:


wrong link


Its not the wrong link

I am using that link right now
Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7874
Quoting TropicalWave:
for ow long, met?


sa lnog sa posislbe


seriously though, is only June, sure it is a big wave but lets see if it can survive a crossing.
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Quoting twhcracker:


sorry. people were encouraging me and it was like pouring gas on a flame.


Some people encouraged me to jump off of a building once...I didn't do it.
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Quoting asgolfr999:


Your comments are no less asinine than those not at all amusing ones that you insist on cluttering up this blog with. For me, you can keep your sarcastic laden "funnies" to yourself.

We now have oil here on the beach at Dauphin Island, and I would sure like BP or anyone else to keep trying, no matter how successfully or not, to clean up this mess and prevent further disaster.

Any ideas, or are you too busy or too far away...???


sorry. people were encouraging me and it was like pouring gas on a flame.
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Quoting futuremet:


I don't think it has good chance to develop. According to satellite imagery, this system has great outflow. However, its outflow is mostly enhance by the ITCZ. It is also slightly below 10N, which makes it harder but not impossible, for it acquire a cyclonic signature.

The models are also expecting the subtropical jet stream to kink a little farther south at the eastern Caribbean next week.
thanks, what does a subtropical jet do to a potential TC?
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Quoting TropicalWave:


also, remember to disregard the profound profanity users in here.


don't forget to ignore the profoundly pointless posters either JFV!
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Quoting Hurricanes101:
Navy site

here is a link for the East Atlantic loop


wrong link
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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