93L still disorganized; extreme heat wave hits the Middle East and Africa

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:05 PM GMT on June 24, 2010

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The amount and intensity of heavy thunderstorm activity associated with the tropical wave (Invest 93L) located a few hundred miles south of Jamaica has increased over the past 24 hours, but the storm remains very disorganized and is not a threat to develop into a tropical depression today. The storm has not brought heavy rains to Haiti, fortunately, but heavy rains are expected today across Jamaica, where flash flood warnings have been posted. Satellite loops show a very disorganized system, with no low-level spiral bands and limited upper-level outflow. There are no signs of a surface circulation visible on satellite imagery. Pressures at the ground station nearest to the storm (Kingston) are beginning to fall, as are pressures at buoy 42057 a few hundred miles west of the storm, a sign that 93L is more organized than yesterday. Water vapor satellite loops show that moist air surrounds 93L, and there is less dry air to the storm's southwest than there was yesterday. There is an upper-level high pressure system a few hundred miles west of 93L, and the clockwise flow air around this high is bringing upper-level winds out of the northwest of about 10 knots over 93L, contributing to the 10 knots of wind shear observed in this morning's wind shear analysis from the University of Wisconsin's CIMSS group. Sea Surface Temperatures are plenty warm, a record 29 - 30°C. The Madden-Julian oscillation (MJO) currently favors upward motion over the Caribbean, which will act to increase the chances of tropical storm formation this week. The main negative for 93L continues to be the lack of spin. Last night's pass of the ASCAT satellite showed little in the way of a wind shift associated with 93L, though the pass did not completely capture the storm. The University of Wisconsin 850 mb relative vorticity analysis is showing that spin at 850 mb (roughly 5,000 feet in altitude) has increased over the past two days. The Hurricane Hunters are on call to investigate 93L Friday afternoon. Today's flight was canceled, due to 93L's lack of development.


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

Track forecast for 93L
I expect that by tomorrow, 93L should be closer to being directly underneath the upper level high pressure system to its west, which would act to lower wind shear and provide more favorable upper-level outflow. NHC is giving 93L a 40% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Saturday morning, which is a reasonable forecast. Given the storm's current lack of spin and relatively modest amount of heavy thunderstorms, the earliest I'd expect 93L to become a tropical depression would be Friday afternoon, with Friday night or Saturday morning more likely. Interaction with land will be a problem for 93L, as it will likely move over Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula or Western Cuba on Saturday. Expect 93L to bring flooding rains of 3 - 6 inches to Jamaica and eastern Cuba today through Friday. These rains will spread to the Cayman Islands, northern Honduras, and central Cuba Friday through Saturday, and western Cuba, Belize, and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula on Saturday and Sunday. The current run of the SHIPS model has 93L slowing down late this week to a forward speed of just 7 knots (8 mph) from its current speed of about 10 mph, in response to a weakening in the steering currents. A trough of low pressure is expected to swing down over the Eastern U.S. on Monday. If this trough is strong enough and 93L develops significantly, the storm could get pulled northwards and make landfall along the northern Gulf of Mexico coast. This is the solution of the GFS, GFDL, and HWRF models. If 93L stays weak and/or the trough is not so strong, the storm would get pushed west-northwestwards across Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula and towards the Texas or Mexican coast south of Texas. This is the solution of the NOGAPS, ECMWF, and Canadian models. A likely landfall location is impossible to speculate on reliably at this point, and the storm could hit virtually anywhere along the Gulf of Mexico coast given the current uncertainty in its development. A key factor will be how far north the center of 93L eventually consolidates at.

Intensity forecast for 93L
The amount of wind shear in the Gulf of Mexico next week is highly uncertain. There is currently a band of high shear near 30 knots over the Gulf. The GFS model predicts that this band of high shear will lift northwards, keeping low wind shear over the Gulf next week. However, the ECMWF model keeps high shear entrenched over the Gulf of Mexico. I give 93L a 50% chance of eventually becoming Tropical Storm Alex, but the odds of it eventually becoming a hurricane have lessened to 10%. None of the computer models is calling for 93L to become a hurricane.

Elsewhere in the tropics
None of the reliable computer models is calling for tropical cyclone formation in the Atlantic over the next seven days.


Figure 2. Dust storm over Iraq on June 23, 2010. Image credit: NASA.

Extreme heat wave sets all-time high temperature records in Africa and Middle East
A withering heat wave of unprecedented intensity and areal covered has smashed all-time high temperatures in five nations in the Middle East and Africa over the past week. Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Chad, Kuwait, and Niger all set new records for their hottest temperatures of all time, and two other Middle East nations came within a degree of their hottest temperatures ever. The heat was the most intense in Kuwait, which recorded its hottest temperature in history on June 15 in Abdaly, according to information I received from the Kuwait Met office. The mercury hit 52.6°C (126.7°F). Kuwait's previous all-time hottest temperature was 51.9°C (125.4°F), on July 27,2007, at Abdaly. Temperatures reached 51°C (123.8°F) in the capital of Kuwait City on June 15, 2010.

Iraq had its hottest day in history on June 14, 2010, when the mercury hit 52.0°C (125.6°F) in Basra. Iraq's previous record was 51.7°C (125.1°F) set August 8, 1937, in Ash Shu'aybah.

It was also incredibly hot in Saudi Arabia, which had its hottest temperature ever on Tuesday (June 22): 52.0°C (125.6°F), measured in Jeddah, the second largest city in Saudi Arabia. The previous record was 51.7°C (125.1°F), at Abqaiq, date unknown. The record heat was accompanied by a sandstorm, which caused eight power plants to go offline, resulting in blackouts to several Saudi cities.

In Africa, Chad had its hottest day in history on Tuesday (June 22), when the temperature reached 47.6°C (117.7°F) at Faya. The previous record was 47.4°C (117.3°F) at Faya on June 3 and June 9, 1961.

Niger tied its record for hottest day in history on Tuesday (June 22), when the temperature reached 47.1°C (116.8°F) at Bilma. That record stood for just one day, as Bilma broke the record again on Wednesday (June 23), when the mercury topped out at 48.2°C (118.8°F). The previous record was 47.1°C on May 24, 1998, also at Bilma.

Two other countries came within a degree of their all time hottest temperature on record during the heat wave. Bahrain had its hottest June temperature ever, 46.9°C, on June 20, missing the all-time record of 47.5°C (117.5°F), set July 14, 2000. Temperatures in Quatar reached 48.8°C (119.8°F) on June 20. Quatar's all-time record hottest temperature was 49.6°C (121.3°F) set on July 9, 2000.

According to Essa Ramadan, a Kuwaiti meteorologist from Civil Aviation, Matrabah, Kuwait smashed this record and had Asia's hottest temperature in history on June 15 this year, when the mercury hit 54.0°C (129.2°F). However, data from this station is notoriously bad, and each year bogus record highs have to be corrected, according to an email I received from weather record researcher Maximiliano Herrera. Asia's hottest temperature in history will very likely remain the 53.5°C (128.3°F) recorded at MohenjuDaro, Pakistan on May 26 this year.

Commentary
We've now had seven countries in Asia and Africa that have beaten their all-time hottest temperature record during the past two months. As I discussed in my blog about Pakistan's May 26 record, Southeast Asia also had its all-time hottest temperature in May, when the mercury hit 47°C (116.6°F) in Myinmu, Myanmar on May 12. All of these records are unofficial, and will need to be certified by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). According to Chris Burt, author of Extreme Weather, setting five national heat records in one month is not unprecedented--in August 2003, six countries (the UK, France, Portugal, Germany, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein) all broke their all-time heat records during that year's notorious summer heat wave. Fortunately, the residents of the countries affected by this week's heat wave are more adapted to extreme high temperatures, and we are not seeing the kind of death tolls experienced during the 2003 European heat wave (30,000 killed.) This week's heat wave in Africa and the Middle East is partially a consequence of the fact that Earth has now seen three straight months with its warmest temperatures on record, according to NOAA's National Climatic Data Center. It will be interesting to see if the demise of El Niño in May will keep June from becoming the globe's fourth straight warmest month on record.


Figure 3. Approximate oil spill location on June 23, 2010, and estimated by NOAA using visible satellite imagery from NASA's MODIS instrument, and Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery from polar-orbiting satellites. Image credit: NOAA Satellite Services Division.

Wind and ocean current forecast for the BP oil disaster
East to southeast winds of 5 - 15 knots will blow in the northern Gulf of Mexico today through Monday, according to the latest marine forecast from NOAA. The resulting weak ocean currents should push the oil to the west and northwest onto portions of the Louisiana and Alabama coasts, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA and the State of Louisiana. I would expect Mississippi to have its most serious threat of oil yet early next week as these winds continue. The longer range outlook is uncertain, and will depend upon what 93L does.

Resources for the BP oil disaster
Map of oil spill location from the NOAA Satellite Services Division
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 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

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Quoting 7544:


what parts of fla are u seeing getting soaked


I hope we get soaked. We need it bad here just south of Tampa bay.
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250. IKE
Quoting Drakoen:


There it is. They have it moving NW....ugh.
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Good morning, Kman. Nice obs. Thanks.
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Quoting IKE:
scottsvb....you think recon...based on your forecast for tomorrow, will fly in?


unless we get T-storm near the center and it doesnt go into Honduras (cause its weak with the LLF) then yeah.. but it needs T-Storms near the center.
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Good morning

I am beginning to view the Caribbean as two separate features now. There is the low level feature known as 93L that has been tracked for several days and is located off to the SW of Jamaica. This feature is supposed to head off to the NW sometime soon and perhaps develop. So far, it has shown a marked reluctance to do so.

Off to the East and SE of Jamaica we continue to see deep convection pulsing. This is supposedly associated with 93L and has trailed to the East of the wave axis for several days.
The odd thing though is that as 93L has progressed in a generally West direction that deep convection increasingly appears to be establishing its own identity. Certainly, it has not shown any inclination to "follow" 93L and has expanded further East from the departing 93L this morning.

Whether anything will come of 93L or the convection it is leaving behind remians to be seen but it is an interesting evolution of conditions out there.

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Quoting Patrap:


10-12 Degrees from vertical is a good number still Im hearing.

Folks have to realize when that 5000 feet of Riser went over with the rig..a tremendous amount of stress was put on the top of the BOP and the well Head casing.

So the Well bore is in Bad shape and the Bottom currents are taking a toll as well on the Stack.


Thats a lot of tilt for as heavy as the BOP is...WOW! I don't like that at all....Stress may be an underestimate there.....MAN! Geesh! NICE! and anyother word i get accussed of using!
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Quoting MississippiWx:


LOL, I don't think you have to back up your claim on where the low is anymore. You nailed it this morning. Nice work.


That is an impressive swirl but it is dislocated from all convection.....

So unless it develops convection it will remain just that... a swirl

Not saying its impossible but most likely it will need a few more days to allow the mess to its east to catch up.

By that time however this swirl may be in Honduras

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Location NHC expects tomorrow afternoon


I. ATLANTIC REQUIREMENTS
1. SUSPECT AREA (WESTERN CARIBBEAN)
FLIGHT ONE - TEAL 70
A. 25/1800Z
B. AFXXX 01AAA INVEST
C. 25/1430Z
D. 17.5N 83.0W
E. 25/1730Z TO 25/2200Z
F. SFC TO 10,000 FT
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Quoting twhcracker:
i asked the bp guy at the meeting if they had a plan in case a hurricane came toward our beaches here in fla and he said no. and i asked if he knew there was a storm in the caribbean that could come here and he said no. I could see he was really on top of things. i bet he makes a lot of money.
I agree with that comment but I am concerned with 93L and next week. Maybe they will develop and implement a great plan by then, but I doubt it!!!
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Quoting Abacosurf:


The cap has been gone since yesterday....


They put it back on late last nite...but, what i was watching last nite with a few other bloggers was some cracks that was flowing Oil out from the surface floor.....they was obviously looking for these as the ROV was hoovering near the surface floor in search of something.....which they did find......my mouth flew right open as did others last nite.
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It seems to me more likely that the mid level circulation near Jamaica will bore down to the surface than the area west of 80 will be able to develop any appreciable thunderstorm activity. If it means anything, the NHC's 40% circle is centered on the disturbed weather near Jamaica.
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Quoting TampaSpin:


Do you know if the BOP has tilted any further?


10-12 Degrees from vertical is a good number still Im hearing.

Folks have to realize when that 5000 feet of Riser went over with the rig..a tremendous amount of stress was put on the top of the BOP and the well Head casing.

So the Well bore is in Bad shape and the Bottom currents are taking a toll as well on the Stack.
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Good morning all long time poster, just moved to Tallahassee from Naples. Looks like a busy season ahead.
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11:00 am National Hurricane Center Advisories
GRAPHICS UPDATE


Member Since: June 29, 2009 Posts: 13 Comments: 5364
Quoting Jeff9641:


It will take a couple of days before we see a TD I think. Lots of convection and MLV's competing each other.


I'm pretty shocked that you are saying that.
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Quoting Jeff9641:


does it go ashore or go north?


Goes northwest
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I think I am going to have to relocate. AC is not working in my house. Temperatures in Georgia supposed to get near 97 with a heat index near 105. Sweating buckets as I type here. I hate the summer so much. Early summer means early Fall? I sure hope so.

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Quoting nola70119:



That is a real threat. Booms aren't going to handle it. According to Masters, Mississippi may get hit early next week either way...


Booms was Humor friend.

I fish the Rigolets often and Im well aware of the area.


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Quoting Patrap:


The Cap will be gone if they have to evacuate the DWH site.



Do you know if the BOP has tilted any further?
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Quoting Patrap:


Lake Pontchartrain is critical for many here..And the Line at the Rigolets is where the Oil would enter from the East in a Storm from the S or Se.

So many are watching here with Bated breath and boom.



That is a real threat. Booms aren't going to handle it. According to Masters, Mississippi may get hit early next week either way...
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Quoting MississippiWx:


LOL, I don't think you have to back up your claim on where the low is anymore. You nailed it this morning. Nice work.


:) Thank you
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Quoting 7544:


what parts of fla are u seeing getting soaked


our bay co weather shows increase in chance of rain to 50% sun, mon and tues i think.
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Quoting Patrap:


The Cap will be gone if they have to evacuate the DWH site.



The cap has been gone since yesterday....
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Quoting Drakoen:


LOL, I don't think you have to back up your claim on where the low is anymore. You nailed it this morning. Nice work.
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i asked the bp guy at the meeting if they had a plan in case a hurricane came toward our beaches here in fla and he said no. and i asked if he knew there was a storm in the caribbean that could come here and he said no. I could see he was really on top of things. i bet he makes a lot of money.
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Not much happening anytime soon so im gonna take a break...
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Quoting Drakoen:


Best it has looked yet...
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Quoting AMKFLA:
I believe that if anything forms, it will be from the area south/southeast of Jamaica. I'm trying to tell if I can see turning in the low clouds...can't quite determine that or not yet.
Doesn't appear to be anything yet. All mid-level....
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Here's a article & video from yesterday as we let Media onto our Oil recon observation flight in the C-23 Sherpa (catfish).


They got in the way so much, made it hard to do our work. WALB News 10
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211. IKE
scottsvb....you think recon...based on your forecast for tomorrow, will fly in?
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The MMIC-TPW is pretty convincing on where the circulation is as well.
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Quoting btwntx08:

a link to see this will be fine plz thx


Will a visual representation work? Lol.

Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 25170
Quoting TampaSpin:


Does BP have the preventitive measures in place to keep the Cap on that is capturing so much of this oil they claim?


The Cap will be gone if they have to evacuate the DWH site.

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206. 7544
Quoting Jeff9641:
FL is going to get soaked. Sunday thru next Friday is looking extremely wet. A trough combining with this mess means lots of rain for the Sunshine State.


what parts of fla are u seeing getting soaked
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6952
Quoting scottsvb:
Although 93L is looking better on Satellite this morning, 93L is still a couple days away from being a TD or storm. Pressures have fallen to around 1007-1008mbs but its lacking T-Storms around the center. The center isnt closed yet. It does have a vortex center with a open trough digging south. No SW winds. This should be wrapped up by Friday.
Problem is windshear mostly out of the NW @ 10=15kts. Not that bad, but with the system moving almost directly into the shear force..it hinders development. Also drier air in the SW carribean up to 17N west of 80W hasnt helped also.
Forecast in the near term says 0%chance for development of a TD today and 30% by Friday. Question will be by Saturday. Better midlevel conditions, also more moisture in the NW carribean.. but will this be inland over Belieze-Yucitan cause its weak, or will 93L get better organized later Friday into Friday night and head more NW near Cozumel and be classified on Saturday. Still will say 40%. 93L has actual gone WSW overnight and that doesnt help the near term.
bump
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Quoting Patrap:


Lake Pontchartrain is critical for many here..And the Line at the Rigolets is where the Oil would enter from the East in a Storm from the S or Se.

So many are watching here with Bated breath and boom.


Does BP have the preventitive measures in place to keep the Cap on that is capturing so much of this oil they claim?
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IR Loop

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Dr. Masters co-founded wunderground in 1995. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990. Co-blogging with him: Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

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