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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1484. Levi32
Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:
Levi,what is the latest that you are seeing on the wave off Africa? Also,talk about the ones that are inside the continent as I like how you analize with the graphics.


Well I'm not on a computer that has my gwaphic toys on it so I'll have to disappoint you there lol.

As for the east Atlantic wave, it is behaving as I expected, with most of the convection becoming thoroughly part of the ITCZ, and I don't expect anything significant development-wise with this wave outside of the Caribbean. The next couple waves may emerge quite strong, perhaps surpassing the latest wave. They will also be coming off a bit farther north, so the potential down the road for them to get into the Caribbean and cause mischief is higher. Odds are that we will see nothing particularly threatening from any of these waves yet out in the middle of the Atlantic, but down the road they could cause trouble in the Caribbean.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26547
1483. xcool
blog gogo down
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1482. Grothar
Quoting atmoaggie:
Aww, shut it.

Y'all, I have to take this opportunity to express that nearly all NOLA folks are nothing like this piece of work. In fact, attitude so unlike NOLA, I would not be surprised if it were a transplant or someone not actually anywhere near NOLA.


Probably Brooklyn!
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25369
Quoting weathersp:


Exactly, when I went to OU and met with the students I saw that they were doing alot of school work and when I asked them about field study or research, the main reply was "Oh, the grad students mostly get to do that kind of stuff, we don't" and that was a real turn off for me. At Millersville (which is all undergrad) I found that all the projects granted were going right to the undergrad students and they launch weather balloons and have a nice observation lab, and it was relatively close, so that's where I chose.

Well, thanks to a decent number of required technical elective hours and an array of courses available for undergrads, I was able to focus on atmo chem, air pollution meteorology, and numerical modeling as an undergrad. All the while, my TV-hopeful mates were taking astronomy and broadcast courses with those hours.

Since then, the route I took has become required course material, though.

But, when I graduated, what I had taken was unique/desired enough to get a decent job, while others toiled about for a small market TV job paying nothing or became the manager at Hertz car rental. Some did great, sure, many are likely not quite where they imagined a met BS could take them.

Take note of the number of met grads out there and available jobs. For years, the pool of applicants has been outstripping the available positions. Not a field where the job market is growing by leaps and bounds. (but more stable lately than many others)
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Night!
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1479. centex
Wife got diverted to Houston from Austin from DC tonight. Now wondering if she gets out before line gets to Houston.
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Quoting Katrina2NOLA2010:
1463:

Lol....


I regularly tested 134-140 ish I.Q. with MENSA.

Try again. one in 25k to one in 250k or so.

Thank you Jesus.


So you SHOULD be smart enough to know you dictate your own life... right? But you would've already figured that out and blah blah blah, right? Right?

Whooops. Guess not, honey.
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
When things get real busy here, all the people who are interested in actually discussing weather should conjugate to W456, Levi, Drak, or StormW's blog. That way we shouldn't have to deal with all the BS that goes down here and moderation would be instantaneous.

Just a thought...


Agreed.
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Quoting Ossqss:


You all need to send that message to Jeff Masters, he does has email on his site! I am certain some on here have already done that!

I will probably get a ban now, LoL



Don't make me post your Cell# which i do have ......LOL!!!..ROFLMAO J/K
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I concur with everyone here in regards to trolls, if I have to pay to get rid of them so be it. I came here to learn from veterans, and observe weather with fellow enthusiasts. All the drama here with JFV, and such is getting extreme. Enough is enough!
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1474. gator23
Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:
Levi,what is the latest that you are seeing on the wave off Africa? Also,talk about the ones that are inside the continent as I like how you analize with the graphics.


how come you didn't ask me! 60 percent of the time I m right everytime!
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When things get real busy here, all the people who are interested in actually discussing weather should conjugate at W456, Levi, Drak, or StormW's blog. That way we wouldn't have to deal with all the BS that goes down here and the moderation would be instantaneous.

Just a thought...
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1471. Ossqss
Quoting gator23:


OSSGSS i would be willing to sign a petition or whatever it takes if you could set that up and get it going


You all need to send that message to Jeff Masters, he has email on his site! I am certain some on here have already done that!

I will probably get a ban now, LoL

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Levi,what is the latest that you are seeing on the wave off Africa? Also,talk about the ones that are inside the continent as I like how you analize with the graphics.
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Quoting weathersp:


Exactly, when I went to OU and met with the students I saw that they were doing alot of school work and when I asked them about field study or research, the main reply was "Oh, the grad students mostly get to do that kind of stuff, we don't" and that was a real turn off for me. At Millersville (which is all undergrad) I found that all the projects granted were going right to the undergrad students and they launch weather balloons and have a nice observation lab, and it was relatively close, so that's where I chose.


You guys are offering me a very interesting perspective, I might want to look for programs that give a more hands on approach rather than straight class/bookwork.
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1467. xcool
OH MAN WHAT HAPPER TO BLOG
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The Lord is delivering to the parched TX grounds tonight.
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9628
1465. help4u
Agree ,this should only be about weather.post 1455 and 1458!
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Can y'all stop quoting Katrina2NOLA2010?

I really hate seeing the lower end of the spectrum when it comes to human intelligence.

Definitely high on the ignorance spectrum though.

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1462. gator23
/blockquote>
Quoting TampaSpin:



Still shouldn't be.....i love NOLA......been there twice and loved every second there! The food and the Beer was great! Burbon Street was outstanding.


Patrap said he was from an eastern locale i think he meant Florida which is where i am from and am currently embarrassed about
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Admittedly, I did feed the troll, albeit briefly. I apologize, amigos.

I only did so, however, because I wanted to give this guy the benefit of the doubt. It's clear now he's just trolling, though.
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Quoting atmoaggie:

A lot of programs have gone to a theory-based curriculum and less of an application-from-theory. We never examined radar for severe weather in school. Never launched a weather balloon. Little actual analysis.

Proved the radiative transfer equation, with clouds, though. Yippee!

I did enjoy it, but at some point was let down a little when I realized we were not preparing to take the theory to real world obs in school. Had to do that on your own...not that anyone should be dependent on a course to do it, but having a prof to ask questions of in that regard would have been nice.


Exactly, when I went to OU and met with the students I saw that they were doing alot of school work and when I asked them about field study or research, the main reply was "Oh, the grad students mostly get to do that kind of stuff, we don't" and that was a real turn off for me. At Millersville (which is all undergrad) I found that all the projects granted were going right to the undergrad students and they launch weather balloons and have a nice observation lab, and it was relatively close, so that's where I chose.
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This is what Im going to do in a few hours folks in my driveway...

Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9628
1458. gator23
Quoting Ossqss:


Do you really think the AD dollars from this blog would diminish? I think they would grow. . . without the BS in season and the load of lurkers ? Just sayin, I am growing weary of the politics and other BS that has been accumulating here. We are not on this blog for that, are we? I don't think so.

Fix it!


OSSQSS i would be willing to sign a petition or whatever it takes if you could set that up and get it going
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1446: I think you might have misread either the web site's forte or the blog topic.
Seems that you simply are lost in blogosphere, looking for the forum matching the topic in mind. At this stage of lost-in-blogosphere, there is only one cure.

That is to remove hands from keyboard, unplug all electronic devices, and wait until driving age and try again.
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Quoting gator23:


dude i have never been embarrassed about where i was from until today =-(



Still shouldn't be.....i love NOLA......been there twice and loved every second there! The food and the Beer was great! Burbon Street was outstanding.
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1455. Levi32
Quoting Ossqss:


Do you really think the AD dollars from this blog would diminish? I think they would grow. . . without the BS in season and the load of lurkers ? Just sayin, I am growing weary of the politics and other BS that has been accumulating here. We are not on this blog for that, are we? I don't think so.

Fix it!


I agree...tired of 75% of the posts during the height of the day being completely unrelated to the weather. That's what I'm here for, and only that. It will only be worse in August and September. I can only imagine.....I'll be missing Bob's blog this year.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26547
1454. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting weathersp:
Trolls out in force tonight, rembember to click your friend "Iggy" the ignore button for trolls, and the button for the posters who are just here to cause trouble.


img src="http://" alt="" />
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
1453. gator23
Quoting gator23:
.
Quoting Patrap:


Hes not from La. as per the IP addy.

Its Someone from a eastern Locale that I wont name.


dude i have never been embarrassed about where i was from until today =-(
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Big storms over Texas.
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1451. Ossqss
Quoting TampaSpin:


Less Traffic less Ad Dollars......but, he could make it visible to everyone but, could allow for those that pay be the ones that play only.


Do you really think the AD dollars from this blog would diminish? I think they would grow. . . without the BS in season and the load of lurkers ? Just sayin, I am growing weary of the politics and other BS that has been accumulating here. We are not on this blog for that, are we? I don't think so.

Fix it!
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Quoting MrstormX:
Wow thats really cool, but I understad why you didn't choose Oklahoma... From the reviews I have read the professors seem to favor the grad students over undergrads. Anyways thanks!

A lot of programs have gone to a theory-based curriculum and less of an application-from-theory. We never examined radar for severe weather in school. Never launched a weather balloon. Little actual analysis.

Proved the radiative transfer equation, with clouds, though. Yippee!

I did enjoy it, but at some point was let down a little when I realized we were not preparing to take the theory to real world obs in school. Had to do that on your own...not that anyone should be dependent on a course to do it, but having a prof to ask questions of in that regard would have been nice.
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1449. beell
Ooops,
Wrong blog again.
So sorry, carry on, lol.
Night, ya'll.
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Dang it just went off the air......look like the ROV was surfacing......HUM
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Quoting atmoaggie:
Aww, shut it.

Y'all, I have to take this opportunity to express that nearly all NOLA folks are nothing like this piece of work. In fact, attitude so unlike NOLA, I would not be surprised if it were a transplant or someone not actually anywhere near NOLA.


Yeah. I've been to NOLA myself a couple times, and recently went to Metairie in 2006. Trust me, I know. I just like having fun with this guy. ;)
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Cool view of the ROV currently....
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Trolls out in force tonight, rembember to click your friend "Iggy" the ignore button for trolls, and the button for the posters who are just here to cause trouble.
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1443. gator23
atmo it has been fixed. You are right as usual. that character is not worth my wisdom
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1442. Levi32
Quoting atmoaggie:
Aww, shut it.

Y'all, I have to take this opportunity to express that nearly all NOLA folks are nothing like this piece of work. In fact, attitude so unlike NOLA, I would not be surprised if it were a transplant or someone not actually anywhere near NOLA.


Oh there's no way this person actually lives in NOLA. Nobody who lived there through Katrina would ever make a handle like that. Not in a million years.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26547
1441. Patrap
Quoting atmoaggie:
Aww, shut it.

Y'all, I have to take this opportunity to express that nearly all NOLA folks are nothing like this piece of work. In fact, attitude so unlike NOLA, I would not be surprised if it were a transplant or someone not actually anywhere near NOLA.


Hes not from La. as per the IP addy.

Its Someone from a eastern Locale that I wont name.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127549
Quoting Katrina2NOLA2010:
1410:

All others go to hell.

"He who believeth not is condemned already." - Jesus.


Thank God that there won't be any Muslims or Buddhists or Zeus worshippers in heaven. 'Cause heaven is an absolute monarchy ruled by the "King of Kings and Lord of Lords", and "He ruled them with a rod of iron..."

Gonna be a great place to be if you're a Christian, not so great if you're anything else, 'cause your next stop is the lake of fire with your buddy the devil.

Jesus saves.

Repent sinners, especially you murdering hate mongering women oppressing muslims.


Christ would be most proud, indeed. :)
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Ouch:

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1438. xcool
TampaSpin haha
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Is quoting the worldly genius really necessary?
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Aww, shut it.

Y'all, I have to take this opportunity to express that nearly all NOLA folks are nothing like this piece of work. In fact, attitude so unlike NOLA, I would not be surprised if it were a transplant or someone not actually anywhere near NOLA.
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Wow thats really cool, but I understad why you didn't choose Oklahoma... From the reviews I have read the professors seem to favor the grad students over undergrads. Anyways thanks!
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1434. gator23
.
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About

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