New Caribbean disturbance 93L a major concern; flooding in Asia kills over 200

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:50 PM GMT on June 21, 2010

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A concentrated region of intense thunderstorms associated with a tropical wave has developed in the central Caribbean, a few hundred miles south of Puerto Rico. This disturbance was designated Invest 93L by NHC this morning, and has the best chance to become Tropical Storm Alex of any system we've seen so far this year. The disturbance is located near Buoy 42059, and this buoy has been reporting winds of 5 - 15 knots this morning. So far, pressures are not falling. Water vapor satellite loops show that 93L is embedded in a large region of moist air. Some dry continental air from North America is over the western Caribbean, but this dry air is too far away to interfere with development today and Tuesday. Wind shear is a low 5 - 10 knots. The high wind shear associated with the strong winds of the subtropical jet stream are over the northern Caribbean, too far north to interfere with development. Sea Surface Temperatures are plenty warm, a record 29 - 30°C. The Madden-Julian oscillation currently favors upward motion over the Caribbean, which will act to increase the chances of tropical storm formation this week. The Madden-Julian oscillation is a pattern of enhanced rainfall that travels along the Equator from west to east. The pattern has a wet phase with large-scale rising air and enhanced thunderstorm activity, followed by a dry phase with large-scale sinking air and suppressed thunderstorm activity. Each cycle lasts approximately 30 - 60 days. When the Madden-Julian oscillation is in its wet phase over a hurricane-prone region, the chances for tropical storm activity are greatly increased. The only negative for 93L would seem to be the lack of spin; the University of Wisconsin 850 mb relative vorticity analysis is showing only meager amounts of spin at 850 mb (roughly 5,000 feet in altitude.)


Figure 1. Morning visible satellite image of the central Caribbean disturbance 93L.

Forecast for 93L
NHC is giving 93L a 20% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Wednesday morning, which is a reasonable forecast. With wind shear expected to drop to low values less than 10 knots over the central and western Caribbean this week (Figure 2), I don't see any major impediments to the storm becoming a tropical depression by Friday. The ECMWF model is the most aggressive in developing this system, taking it into the Gulf of Mexico as a hurricane next week. The NOGAPS model keeps the storm weak and farther south, predicting that 93L will bring heavy rains to northern Honduras as a tropical disturbance or tropical depression on Friday and Saturday. The GFS model does not develop 93L. Expect 93L to bring flooding rains of 3 - 6 inches to Jamaica, eastern Cuba, and extreme southwestern Haiti on Wednesday. These rains will spread to the Cayman Islands and central Cuba by Thursday.


Figure 2. Predicted wind shear for Friday, June 25, as forecast by this morning's 2am EDT run of the GFS model. Shear is given in meters per second; multiply by about two to convert to knots. Low wind shear values less than 6 m/s (12 knots) are predicted for much of the Western Caribbean this week.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The tropical wave (92L) that brought heavy rains of 2 - 5 inches to Puerto Rico on Saturday has weakened and is no longer a threat to bring flooding rains to the Caribbean.

Floods in China and Burma kill over 200
The deadliest and most destructive weather-related disaster on the planet so far this year is occurring in southern China and northern Burma, where a week of heavy rains has caused flooding that has claimed over 200 lives. The death toll stands at 175 in China and 63 in Burma, with more than 100 people still missing in China. Damage so far in China has been estimated at $4.3 billion.


Figure 3. Tree branches hung on a bridge at Taining County, southeast China's Fujian Province, June 19, 2010. Taining recorded 225 mm (9 inches) of rain in six hours on Friday. Image credit: Xinhua/Jiang Kehong.

Montana tornado rips roof off entertainment complex
A EF-2 tornado with winds of at least 100 mph ripped the roof of an entertainment complex in Billings, Montana on Sunday, causing up to $15 million in damage. No injuries were reported. It was the strongest tornado to hit the Billings area since 1958.


Figure 4. Video of the Billings tornado shows an impressive debris cloud (and a few expletives not deleted!) The clear slot on the right of the tornado is likely associated with the parent thunderstorm's rear flank downdraft.

Wind and ocean current forecast for the BP oil disaster
Southeast to east winds less than 10 knots will blow in the northern Gulf of Mexico today through Friday, according to the latest marine forecast from NOAA. The resulting weak ocean currents should cause little motion of the oil slick, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA and the State of Louisiana. The long range outlook is uncertain, as the tropical wave over the central Caribbean could enter the Gulf of Mexico early next week and develop into a tropical storm.

Resources for the BP oil disaster
My post, What a hurricane would do the Deepwater Horizon oil 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
NOAA's interactive mapping tool allows one to overlay wind and ocean current forecasts, oil locations, etc.
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

Jeff Masters

Billings, MT tornado (StormTeam)
Photo taken from approx. 5-6 miles east. Video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8429C0-LSlo
Billings, MT tornado

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3127. Grothar
Quoting reedzone:
I want to be a MET, but I'm also trying to pursue a career in music. I write and compose music for the fun of it. I am very passionate in both subjects.


Just do a version of "Stormy Weather" and you will have the best of both worlds. Combine your talents.
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Quoting Levi32:


Yeah but that doesn't mean I can get a job in the application of it.....plus I'm terrible with the "theory" part of it. Every time I'm asked to prove any theorem in Calculus I die a little inside.

I don't know how many doors an Atmo Science degree opens up....but I can't imagine as many of them are for actual forecasting.

I cannot think of a door closed to one with an atmo sci degree but open to a met degree...inconceivable.
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Quoting Tazmanian:
During active periods of hurricane season, these rules will be strictly enforced. Violations will be met with a minimum 24 hour ban



so un less you all want that can we may be get back too 93L and stop with the met talk thanks


Taz, have you been practicing your spelling? That was extraordinary! LOL
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OMG! Been gone since this morning and thought I was going to get caught up on the blog...wrong! Missed way too many pages to read back through. What's the latest model track showing? Way too early I know, just wanting opinions.
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Quoting txtornado:
atmo 3042 thanks, but i can no more read that than my great dane can. just figured that when a model says 850mb which seems to be popular, it would colate with a certain altitude. thanks anyway, (scratches head, continues lurking)

it's like this, there are height charts and pressure charts. height charts allow the pressure to change where as pressure charts allow the heights to change.

Think of it like this. if you had a bucket 3/4 full on one end of a scale and a bucket full on the other end what would happen? they would tilt to the full side. thats how the pressure is. if there is more air there is higher pressure. in general a warmer column will have lower pressure than a colder column at the same height/altitude due to the compression that happens when matter warms or cools. This is a generalization and doesnt explain warm vs cold cyclones and why they both have low pressure, but I hope it explains why 850mb or any mb level (pressure level) occurs at differeing heights!
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Quoting atmoaggie:

Once upon a time, that program was more obs analysis, radar, etc. and less radiative transfer equation...

Yup, that is correct. I like the direction the program is going and I'm glad to be a part of it.
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Quoting atmoaggie:

What question?


I was asking about BP shutting down repairs/recovery once something enters the Gulf - taco answered me.
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Quoting Acemmett90:

agreed taz but someone called me i said what was needed and lets get back to the brewing tropics




yes whats


and if you all want too met and talk you guys can do it when there not any thing going on this is a weather blog not a met blog
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Quoting Drakoen:
Atmo why didn't you put yourself on the list?


He's got a case of suspended water vapor.
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Quoting TampaSpin:
Just to let everyone KNow, but JFV is getting his degree at FMU!


Fuel Management University????
FMU
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3112. Levi32
Quoting atmoaggie:

Once upon a time, that program was more obs analysis, radar, etc. and less radiative transfer equation...


:(
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26731
Quoting txtornado:
atmo 3042 thanks, but i can no more read that than my great dane can. just figured that when a model says 850mb which seems to be popular, it would colate with a certain altitude. thanks anyway, (scratches head, continues lurking)

Another way. Use what we call a Skew-T chart. Both the millibars and height, in feet plotted (this is standard atmosphere calculated). The bottom is the surface and the pressure fall as the height increases.

Here is a blank one (no temperature obs plotted on it): http://skew-t.com/skew-t.pdf
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3109. Patrap
Well I bet 2010 wont let ya down in the twists and turns dept thel.

u betcha
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 430 Comments: 130856
KoritheMan:

Thank You. I think we are OK. The sirens have finally stopped.
Member Since: June 2, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 205
Quoting Tazmanian:
During active periods of hurricane season, these rules will be strictly enforced. Violations will be met with a minimum 24 hour ban



so un less you all want that can we may be get back too 93L and stop with the met talk thanks


you cant be serious?
Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7874
Quoting Patrap:
A thelmores original.

Welcome back


Thanks my friend..... I never really left, always here in spirit..... but I am just an Atlantic/Caribbean basin junkie..... all the other stuff bores me!

Looking forward to learning some new tricks for the ole dog this year! :)
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Updated model tracks.



AOI

AOI

AOI

AOI
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Quoting 1900hurricane:

Well here at A&M, it fulfills all of the criteria to obtain a job at the NWS, so I don't really see much of a difference. That just might be at my University though.

Once upon a time, that program was more obs analysis, radar, etc. and less radiative transfer equation...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
During active periods of hurricane season, these rules will be strictly enforced. Violations will be met with a minimum 24 hour ban



so un less you all want that can we may be get back too 93L and stop with the met talk thanks
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atmo 3042 thanks, but i can no more read that than my great dane can. just figured that when a model says 850mb which seems to be popular, it would colate with a certain altitude. thanks anyway, (scratches head, continues lurking)
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Quoting taco2me61:
ok here you go.... Any storm at a cat2 or above they close all rigs in the GOM thats in the path of a storm....

Taco :o)


Thanks taco - I'm just concerned that BP might close early. I see all your pictures from Dauphin Island - I have tons of my own that I've taken over the years. I'm worried about a storm - not even a hurricane - just a storm - putting the final knife on our beautiful Louisiana and Alabama shores (and MS and FL too of course...)
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Just to let everyone KNow, but JFV is getting his degree at FMU!
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Quoting galvestonhurricane:
For anyone interested...

http://moe.met.fsu.edu/tcgengifs/

CMC, GFDL, GFS, HWRF, NOGAPS, etc.

Thanks!
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Quoting jazzygal:
I'm in Northern Illinois in my basement with tornado sirens going off. Any reports of tornadoes in this area.


Tornado warning East of Rockford. Cell moving east.
Tune to the TWC...Never mind their showing Napoleon Dynamite.
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Quoting Patrap:
Mmm. Mmm.
Memories, light the corners of my mind
Misty watercolor memories of the way we were.
Scattered pictures of the smiles we left behind
smiles we give to one another
for the way we were.
Can it be that it was all so simple then
or has time rewritten every line?
If we had the chance to do it all again
tell me would we? Could we?


The way we were my friend...... the way we were! :)

Now I am all growed up, married, with children! LOL
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Can someone look at the Enterprise ROV 1 Live feed and tell me what the things are flying by.....it looks like balls of oil....but i don't know!
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Quoting 1900hurricane:

Haha, as do I! I doesn't seem like that long ago either. I can't believe that I've been on the blogs for four years now!
Hey its 5 years for me now.... I don't know what to say..... LMAO

Taco :o)
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Quoting Levi32:


You'd be amazed how small a scholarship is now compared to the full tuition....it's pitiful. I tried already to get into Penn State this year and failed to get enough scholarships.


In this economy it would be wise to stay in state if you don't graduate in the top 5% of your class. Unfortunately for you (scholarship wise), you are home schooled and live in Alaska. I'm surprised there is no school which offers Met degrees up there considering the wild weather in the Peninsula in the Winter time. Guess there is enough coming from Canada and the lower 48.

Very calm tonight. I only wish it stays that way.
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3089. Grothar
Quoting Houstonia:


Crosby and Nash were NOT with them. They were making jokes about going out to look for girls (they were not as eloquent about it though). I wasn't sure if they were serious (they were pretty middle-aged, bald and beer-bellied) and I decided I did not want to pursue conversation with them! :-)


Smart move.
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Quoting Skyepony:
I'm so grateful to those like RyanFSU that are doing the research, spending their work day at it.

Who's the one that makes us the cool red sat maps at LSU? Comes in once in a blue moon & says here's a link to the new toys I made you..

Hopefully, that will be me one day... XD
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Quoting galvestonhurricane:
For anyone interested...

http://moe.met.fsu.edu/tcgengifs/

CMC, GFDL, GFS, HWRF, NOGAPS, etc.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
3085. Patrap
A thelmores original.

Welcome back
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 430 Comments: 130856
00z GFS is coming out. Hopefully that will ease the met talk here.
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Quoting Tazmanian:
YAWN



can we get back 93L Plz


Thanks Tazmanian!
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Quoting futuremet:
I do not have a BS in meteorology, and I have no intention of becoming a meteorologist. I consider myself as a freelance meteorologist.


Ditto. If I want to later on in life, I will probably go for meteorology.
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Quoting jazzygal:
I'm in Northern Illinois in my basement with tornado sirens going off. Any reports of tornadoes in this area.


Go here.
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3080. Levi32
Quoting atmoaggie:

If the label effectively describes the program, yeah, more theory, less application of it. Some of the application, well, you're here, right?


Yeah but that doesn't mean I can get a job in the application of it.....plus I'm terrible with the "theory" part of it. Every time I'm asked to prove any theorem in Calculus I die a little inside.

I don't know how many doors an Atmo Science degree opens up....but I can't imagine as many of them are for actual forecasting.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26731
Quoting Grothar:


Only if Crosby and Young were with them. Did you talk to them?


Crosby and Young were NOT with them. They were making jokes about going out to look for girls (they were not as eloquent about it though). I wasn't sure if they were serious (they were pretty middle-aged, bald and beer-bellied) and I decided I did not want to pursue conversation with them! :-)

Of course if Neil Young had been with them, I would have changed my mind! ;-)
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3078. pottery
Quoting Drakoen:


Yes

I did not know that.
Impressed.....
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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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