Tropical Storm Alex bears down on the Yucatan; extreme heat for Africa and Russia

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:12 PM GMT on June 26, 2010

Share this Blog
5
+

The first named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season of 2010 is here. Tropical Storm Alex formed last might from an African tropical wave that plowed through the Caribbean this week. Alex's formation location is a typical one for June tropical storms, and the formation date of June 25 is also a fairly typical date for the first storm of the season to form (we average about one June named storm every two years in the Atlantic.) Heavy rainfall will ramp up through the day in Honduras, Belize, and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, as Alex continues to intensify, and flooding from these heavy rains will be the main concern from Alex today and Sunday. Satellite loops show that Alex's heavy thunderstorm are growing in intensity and areal coverage at a respectable pace. There is an upper-level high pressure system a few hundred miles west of Alex, and the clockwise flow air around this high is bringing upper-level winds out of the northwest of about 10 knots over the storm, 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 very warm, 29 - 30°C, and dry air is not a problem for Alex. We currently don't have a Hurricane Hunter aircraft in the storm, so we will have to wait until 2pm this afternoon to get an updated estimate of Alex's surface winds. The latest satellite estimates of Alex's winds at 8am EDT put the storm's strongest winds at 40 mph.


Figure 1. Satellite image of the tropics at 9am EDT Saturday 6/26/10. Image credit: GOES Science Project.

Forecast for Alex
As I discussed in last night's post, an examination of the nineteen tropical cyclones that have formed in the Western Caribbean and hit the Yucatan Peninsula over the past twenty years reveals that 8 went on to make a second Gulf Coast landfall in Mexico, 5 hit the U.S. Gulf Coast, and 6 died after hitting the Yucatan. The ones that died all took a more southerly path across the Yucatan, spending more time over land than Alex will. Alex is large enough and moving far enough north across the Yucatan that passage over the peninsula will not kill it. So, will Alex follow the path climatology says is more likely, and make a second landfall along the Mexican Gulf Coast?


Figure 2. Forecast swath of tropical storm force winds (34 - 63 knots, green colors) and hurricane force winds (yellow and orange colors) as predicted by this morning's 2am EDT run of the HWRF model. Image credit: Morris Bender, NOAA GFDL team.

The key question remains how Alex will react to the trough of low pressure expected to swing down over the Eastern U.S. on Monday. Some of yesterday's model runs predicted that this trough would be strong enough to pull Alex northwards through the oil slick region into the northern Gulf of Mexico coast. However, the models that were predicting this (the GFS, GFDL, and HWRF models) are all backing off on that prediction. It now appears likely that Alex will cross the Yucatan, emerge into the Gulf of Mexico, then slow down as the trough to its north weakens the steering currents in the Gulf of Mexico on Monday. By Tuesday, the influence of the trough will wane, high pressure will build in, and Alex will resume a west-northwest, or possibly a due west or west-southwest motion, towards the Texas/Mexico border region. Based on the current trends in the models, Alex's tropical storm force winds are likely to stay well south of the oil slick region (Figure 2.) I put the odds of Alex bringing tropical storm-force winds to the oil slick region at 10%. The most significant impact Alex will likely have on the oil slick region is to bring 2 - 4 foot swells that may wash oil over some of the containment booms. These swells will reach the oil slick region on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Continued intensification of Alex is likely today, up until landfall. It is a good thing the storm waited until last night to get organized; had it formed a day earlier, it could have easily been a hurricane in the Western Caribbean today. Once Alex emerges back into the Gulf of Mexico on Monday, it will likely take the storm at least 24 hours to get re-organized, particularly since the total ocean heat content is low for the 100-mile-wide stretch of water on the west side of the Yucatan Peninsula. Once Alex moves more than 100 miles from the Yucatan, total heat content of the ocean increases substantially, and Alex will have the opportunity to intensify significantly. Steering currents will be weak in the Gulf next week, and it appears that Alex will have time to intensify into a hurricane before making its second landfall along the South Texas/northern Mexico coast. Wind shear is expected to be light, and dry air not a significant impediment. Most of the models are calling for landfall on Wednesday, but I wouldn't be surprised to see this delayed until Thursday. I give Alex a 60% chance of becoming a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico next week.

Elsewhere in the tropics
A tropical wave (Invest 94L) is a few hundred miles northeast of the northernmost Lesser Antilles Islands. This wave is producing a modest amount of heavy thunderstorm activity, and is passing beneath a trough of low pressure that is generating 30 - 40 knots of wind shear, and is not a threat to develop today. However, by Monday, the storm will be in a region of much lower wind shear, and NHC is giving the storm a 10% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Monday morning. None of the models currently develop 94L, but Bermuda should keep and eye on this system, as it will pass very close to the island on Tuesday.

Extreme heat wave in Africa and Asia continues to set all-time high temperature records
A withering heat wave of unprecedented intensity and areal covered continues to smash all-time high temperatures Asia and Africa. As I reported earlier this week, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Chad, Niger, Pakistan, and Myanmar have all set new records for their hottest temperatures of all time over the past six weeks. The remarkable heat continued over Africa and Asia late this week. The Asian portion of Russia recorded its highest temperate in history yesterday, when the mercury hit 42.3°C (108.1°F) at Belogorsk, near the Amur River border with China. The previous record was 41.7°C (107.1°F) at nearby Aksha on July 21, 2004. (The record for European Russia is 43.8°C--110.8°F--set on August 6, 1940, at Alexandrov Gaj near the border with Kazakhstan.) Also, on Thursday, Sudan recorded its hottest temperature in its history when the mercury rose to 49.6°C (121.3°F) at Dongola. The previous record was 49.5°C (121.1°F) set in July 1987 in Aba Hamed.

We've now had eight countries in Asia and Africa, plus the Asian portion of Russia, that have beaten their all-time hottest temperature record during the past two months. This includes Asia's hottest temperature of all-time, the astonishing 53.5°C (128.3°F) mark set on May 26 in Pakistan. 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, the only year which can compare is 2003, when 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 summer's heat wave in Asia and Africa 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.

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 Wednesday, 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 long range outlook shows a continuation of east to southeast winds along the northern Gulf of Mexico coast.

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

Wunderground's severe weather expert Dr. Rob Carver will likely be posting at least one update on Alex this weekend. My next update will be Sunday morning.

Jeff Masters

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 1549 - 1499

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56 | 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61 | 62 | 63 | 64 | 65 | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75Blog Index

Quoting Joanie38:


LOL! It's okay..:) I am a lurker...sometimes a post-er..depending if I have a question or...not...:)


How exactly is someone a "troll" if they sign their name???
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting CybrTeddy:
Faster Alex moves over the Yucatan the less time it will spend over it. Track seems to be in good agreement.. MX landfall as a strong TS/Minimal hurricane certainly possible. Alex is a large system, and has a better chance of not being terribly torn up by the Yucatan compared to a smaller system like Ida in 2009.


Agreed, the core may be over land but the bands aren't. They are feeding Alex the hot carribean and GOM waters.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting WAHA:

Apparently, I found out my brother is making eggs right now; at 4:36 in the afternoon!

Back on topic, maybe it will make it to hurricane strength.


At any good Southern Truck-stop you can get breakfast 24/7. Sometimes the safest choice. Lol
Member Since: September 9, 2007 Posts: 36 Comments: 4687
Pressures across Belize city are below 29.60in.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21032
Alex is so giant, it's pulling moisture from all over the W Caribbean, the EPAC and the BOC/GOM soon. I'm not gonna go as far as saying it'll strengthen over land like Fay, but I wouldn't be surprised to see it only weaken to 50 mph.
Member Since: July 7, 2008 Posts: 2 Comments: 3237
Quoting tropicfreak:


SORRY SORRY, DIDN'T MEAN THAT!! I was saying that some trolls do that, not all of you.


LOL! It's okay..:) I am a lurker...sometimes a post-er..depending if I have a question or...not...:)
Member Since: June 16, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 505
Quoting FirstCoastMan:
How active do ya'll think july will be?


I think that Alex rung the storm bell for July. And you?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Snowlover123:


Working fine for me.

Hmmm....looks the same as it did 20 minutes ago for me. Odd.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Alex's size and structure remind me a lot of far Western Pacific typhoons. That kind of makes sense because it formed in a similar way- a number of competing monsoonal low pressures coalescing into one massive system.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I wonder if that blogger, "belizeit" is going ok.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21032
Quoting Snowlover123:


Ida didn't go over the Yucatan. It made landfall though, and got torn up easily.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/49/Ida_2009_track.png/800px-Ida_2009_track.pn g


I know that, it made landfall further down south but it was a smaller system.. was torn up.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting StormGoddess:
Is the NOAA site acting up? It doesn't seem to be updating correctly.


Working fine for me.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1536. Levi32
Center approaching Belize City.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1535. Walshy
Current Activity:


Tropical Storm Alex
Wind: 65 MPH — Location: 17.3N 87.8W — Movement: W

Hurricane Celia
Wind: 80 MPH — Location: 15.7N 122.2W — Movement: WNW

Hurricane Darby
Wind: 85 MPH — Location: 13.4N 102.8W — Movement: W
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
How active do ya'll think july will be?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting CybrTeddy:
Faster Alex moves over the Yucatan the less time it will spend over it. Track seems to be in good agreement.. MX landfall as a strong TS/Minimal hurricane certainly possible. Alex is a large system, and has a better chance of not being terribly torn up by the Yucatan compared to a smaller system like Ida in 2009.


Ida didn't go over the Yucatan. It made landfall though, and got torn up easily.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/49/Ida_2009_track.png/800px-Ida_2009_track.pn g
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting tropicfreak:


It was moving NW based on satellite imagery.
It could have just been a jog and not actual motion.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21032
Is the NOAA site acting up? It doesn't seem to be updating correctly.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1530. WAHA
Quoting StormW:


Me too! Ya can't tell by my pic though...rough life! LOL!!

???
Oh, I know! Your icon lets people know of your accurate forecast! All I have is a picture of a hurricane label for Google Earth. Then again, you've been posting on this site for as long as I can remember first seeing this site in 2007...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Alex should be over the Gulf of Mexico this time tomorrow.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting IKE:


LOCATION...17.3N 87.8W

PRESENT MOVEMENT...W OR 280 DEGREES AT 12 MPH...19 KM/HR


Moving west. Landfall may be it's last.


It was moving NW based on satellite imagery.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting StormW:


It's one possibility...but I wouldn't expect anything drastic as far as a sharp move northward...just possible, again all depending on timing, could have him get closer to TX/MX border. The KEY is going to be once he gets back out over water...ya get him in the BOC, with a definite motion, and I'll most likely nail landfall.


Ok - thanks.
Member Since: September 5, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3480
Quoting WAHA:

Apparently, I found out my brother is making eggs right now; at 4:36 in the afternoon!

Back on topic, maybe it will make it to hurricane strength.
Highly unlikely. Alex will probably be making landfall within the next 60 minutes.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21032
Faster Alex moves over the Yucatan the less time it will spend over it. Track seems to be in good agreement.. MX landfall as a strong TS/Minimal hurricane certainly possible. Alex is a large system, and has a better chance of not being terribly torn up by the Yucatan compared to a smaller system like Ida in 2009.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting tropicfreak:


SORRY SORRY, DIDN'T MEAN THAT!! I was saying that some trolls do that, not all of you.


Define "troll."
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting WAHA:

Apparently, I found out my brother is making eggs right now; at 4:36 in the afternoon!

Back on topic, maybe it will make it to hurricane strength.


Alex will be fully inland in a couple of hours, so I doubt it.

-Snowlover123
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting IKE:


LOCATION...17.3N 87.8W

PRESENT MOVEMENT...W OR 280 DEGREES AT 12 MPH...19 KM/HR


Moving west. Landfall may be it's last.
All models take it to the BOC though. That quicker motion will help it out as when it re-emerges in the BOC it won't be "destroyed".
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21032
Quoting Joanie38:


Ekkk,I signed my name at the end of my post..BUT I AM NOT a troll..:)


SORRY SORRY, DIDN'T MEAN THAT!! I was saying that some trolls do that, not all of you.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1519. Levi32
65mph.....now see, if they had paid attention to the ship reports earlier this morning, they would have upped it to 60mph at 10am or 1pm, and it would have been a correct intensity. They couldn't help but wait for the plane...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Discussion:
000
WTNT41 KNHC 262033
TCDAT1
TROPICAL STORM ALEX DISCUSSION NUMBER 5
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL012010
400 PM CDT SAT JUN 26 2010

AN AIR FORCE PLANE REACHED ALEX AND FOUND THAT THE CYCLONE WAS A
LITTLE STRONGER...WITH A MINIMUM PRESSURE OF 996 MB AND
FLIGHT-LEVEL WINDS OF 59 KNOTS ON THE SOUTH SIDE. THERE WERE
SEVERAL SFMR VALUES AROUND 55 KNOTS...AND THIS IS THE VALUE USED
FOR THE INITIAL INTENSITY. THIS INTENSITY IS ALSO IN AGREEMENT WITH
THE LATEST T-NUMBERS WHICH REACHED 3.0 AND 3.5 ON THE DVORAK SCALE.
THERE IS LITTLE ROOM FOR ALEX TO INTENSIFY MUCH MORE SINCE A
PORTION OF THE CIRCULATION IS ALREADY OVER LAND. ALEX IS EXPECTED
TO WEAKEN OVER THE YUCATAN PENINSULA...BUT ONCE IN THE GULF OF
MEXICO IT SHOULD BEGIN TO RE-STRENGTHEN. ALEX HAS A COUPLE OF DAYS
OVER WATER AND IN A FAVORABLE ENVIRONMENT BEFORE IT REACHES THE
MEXICAN COAST IN AROUND 96 HOURS.

THE CENTER WAS VERY DIFFICULT TO LOCATE EARLIER TODAY BUT NOW THAT
THE STORM IS BETTER ORGANIZED AND THE HURRICANE HUNTER PLANE
PROVIDED A GOOD FIX...THE INITIAL MOTION IS MORE RELIABLE AND IT IS
ESTIMATED AT 280 DEGREES AT 10 KNOTS. A STRONG SUBTROPICAL RIDGE
EXTENDING FROM THE BAHAMAS ACROSS THE GULF OF MEXICO IS EXPECTED TO
TO KEEP ALEX ON A GENERAL WEST-TO WEST-NORTHWEST TRACK OVER THE
SOUTHERN GULF OF MEXICO THROUGH THE FORECAST PERIOD. A DECREASE IN
FORWARD SPEED IS ANTICIPATED WHILE ALEX IS LOCATED IN THE SOUTHERN
GULF OF MEXICO AS THE STEERING CURRENTS WEAKEN A LITTLE BIT. THE
CONFIDENCE IN THE FORECAST IS HIGH BECAUSE MOST OF THE DYNAMICAL
MODELS ARE IN GOOD AGREEMENT AND HAVE SHIFTED FARTHER SOUTH JOINING
THE RELIABLE ECMWF.


FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INITIAL 26/2100Z 17.3N 87.8W 55 KT
12HR VT 27/0600Z 17.7N 89.2W 30 KT...INLAND
24HR VT 27/1800Z 19.0N 91.0W 30 KT...INLAND
36HR VT 28/0600Z 20.0N 92.5W 45 KT...OVER WATER
48HR VT 28/1800Z 20.5N 93.5W 55 KT
72HR VT 29/1800Z 21.5N 95.5W 65 KT
96HR VT 30/1800Z 22.0N 98.0W 65 KT...INLAND
120HR VT 01/1800Z 22.0N 101.0W 20 KT...INLAND

$$
FORECASTER AVILA
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1516. WAHA
Quoting Snowlover123:


Are you kidding me!? Breakfast never ends for Alex!

Apparently, I found out my brother is making eggs right now; at 4:36 in the afternoon!

Back on topic, maybe it will make it to hurricane strength.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting StormW:


Me too! Ya can't tell by my pic though...rough life! LOL!!


Ahh storm don't torture yourself! Imagine yourself being 28.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting IKE:


LOCATION...17.3N 87.8W

PRESENT MOVEMENT...W OR 280 DEGREES AT 12 MPH...19 KM/HR


Moving west. Landfall may be it's last.


We talked about this earlier
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
4:00 PM CDT Sat Jun 26
Location: 17.3°N 87.8°W
Max sustained: 65 mph
Moving: W at 12 mph
Min pressure: 996 mb

Now it is moving west.....
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1512. IKE
Quoting Walshy:


Texas is out of the cone.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting CybrTeddy:
CMC develops no storms after Alex.

GFS develops the CV wave over Africa and a system off the East Coast.

NOGAPS develops no storms after Alex

ECMWF develops a system off the east coast and has been doing that for a couple of days. ECMWF picked up on Alex first, so we'll have to watch the East Coast.


Lol, us Eastern Seaboarders are DUE for a Tropical Cyclone.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting tropicfreak:


Why do trolls have to sign their name at the end of every comment they post. Just find it funny.


Ekkk,I signed my name at the end of my post..BUT I AM NOT a troll..:)
Member Since: June 16, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 505
Heya Storm. SO wait...there is a chance Alex could feel the trough and move more Northward?
Member Since: September 5, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3480
SUMMARY OF 400 PM CDT...2100 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...17.3N 87.8W
ABOUT 30 MI...50 KM ESE OF BELIZE CITY
ABOUT 90 MI...145 KM SSE OF CHETUMAL MEXICO
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/HR
PRESENT MOVEMENT...W OR 280 DEGREES AT 12 MPH...19 KM/HR
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...996 MB...29.41 INCHES

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1506. Walshy
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting WAHA:

you DO realize I am 13, right?


So is he! lol
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1504. IKE
Quoting tropicfreak:


Why? its moving NW.


LOCATION...17.3N 87.8W

PRESENT MOVEMENT...W OR 280 DEGREES AT 12 MPH...19 KM/HR


Moving west. Landfall may be it's last.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
LOCATION...17.3N 87.8W
ABOUT 30 MI...50 KM ESE OF BELIZE CITY
ABOUT 90 MI...145 KM SSE OF CHETUMAL MEXICO
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/HR
PRESENT MOVEMENT...W OR 280 DEGREES AT 12 MPH...19 KM/HR
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...996 MB...29.41 INCHES
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting WAHA:

you DO realize I am 13, right?


Hey I'm 14. Please adults show some consideration for the young weather wannabes.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Due West heading as I surmised from earlier. This will make for quite a trek over inhospitable terrain.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting WAHA:

you DO realize I am 13, right?
You DO realize I am 13 too, right?
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21032
CMC develops no storms after Alex.

GFS develops the CV wave over Africa and a system off the East Coast.

NOGAPS develops no storms after Alex

ECMWF develops a system off the east coast and has been doing that for a couple of days. ECMWF picked up on Alex first, so we'll have to watch the East Coast.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 1549 - 1499

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56 | 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61 | 62 | 63 | 64 | 65 | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75Blog Index

Top of Page

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.