Colin takes aim at Bermuda; the Great Russian Heat Wave of 2010: 102°F in Moscow

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:45 PM GMT on August 06, 2010

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A reborn Tropical Storm Colin is taking aim at Bermuda, and should bring tropical storm force winds to the island by Saturday afternoon. Colin continues to pass through an unfavorable environment for development--an upper-level low pressure system with dry air and high wind shear. High wind shear of 20 - 25 knots has exposed the surface circulation to view, as seen in recent satellite imagery. Colin's heavy thunderstorm activity is all on the east side of the storm, and the associated rains can now be seen approaching the island on Bermuda radar.

Forecast for Colin
The latest SHIPS model forecast predicts that wind shear will drop to the low to moderate range, 5 - 15 knots, tonight through Saturday afternoon. This relaxation of shear prompts the intensity models to predict that Colin will strengthen to a 50 - 70 mph tropical storm by Sunday. With the forecast path of the storm predicted to take Colin just west of Bermuda, the island will be in the strong right front quadrant of the storm, and may see wind gusts in excess of hurricane force, 74 mph. After its encounter with Bermuda, Colin will head towards Newfoundland, and it is possible the storm could bring tropical storm force winds to the island on Monday. However, wind shear will be on the increase again beginning Saturday night, and it is unlikely Colin will be a hurricane when it makes it closest approach to Newfoundland.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Colin.

93L
A tropical wave (Invest 93) about 700 miles west of the Cape Verdes Islands off the coast of Africa is moving northwest at 10 mph. Wind shear is a moderate 10 - 20 knots over 93L, which is low enough to allow some slow development. This system currently does not appear to be a concern to any land areas over the next seven days. NHC is giving a 40% chance of this disturbance developing into a tropical depression by Sunday morning. The GFS and NOGAPS models predict 93L will become a tropical depression.


Figure 2. Smoke from fires in Russia on August 4 covers an area over 3,000 km (1860 miles) across. If the smoke were in the United States, it would extend approximately from San Francisco to Chicago. Visibility in Moscow dropped to 20 meters (0.01 miles) on August 4, and health officials warned that everyone, including healthy people, needed to take preventative measures such as staying indoors or wearing a mask outdoors. Image credit: NASA.

The Great Russian Heat Wave of 2010 continues
One of the most remarkable weather events of my lifetime is unfolding this summer in Russia, where an unprecedented heat wave has brought another day of 102°F heat to the nation's capital. At 3:30 pm local time today, the mercury hit 39°C (102.2°F) at Moscow's Domodedovo Airport. Moscow had never recorded a temperature exceeding 100°F prior to this year, and today marks the second time the city has beaten the 100°F mark. The first time was on July 29, when the Moscow observatory recorded 100.8°C and Baltschug, another official downtown Moscow weather site, hit an astonishing 102.2°F (39.0°C). Prior to this year, the hottest temperature in Moscow's history was 37.2°C (99°F), set in August 1920. The Moscow Observatory has now matched or exceeded this 1920 all-time record five times in the past eleven days, including today. The 2010 average July temperature in Moscow was 7.8°C (14°F) above normal, smashing the previous record for hottest July, set in 1938 (5.3°C above normal.) July 2010 also set the record for most July days in excess of 30°C--twenty-two. The previous record was 13 such days, set in July 1972. The past 24 days in a row have exceeded 30°C in Moscow, and there is no relief in sight--the latest forecast for Moscow calls for high temperatures near 100°F (37.8°C) for the next seven days. It is stunning to me that the country whose famous winters stopped the armies of Napoleon and Hitler is experiencing day after day of heat near 100°F, with no end in sight.

Thousands of deaths, severe fires, and the threat of radioactive contamination
The extreme heat has led to thousands of premature deaths in Russia. According to Yevgenia Smirnova, an official from the Moscow registry office, "We recorded 14,340 deaths in Moscow in July, that is 4,824 deaths more than in July, 2009." Undoubtedly thousands of additional premature deaths have occurred in the rest of Russia as a result of the heat. The heat has also caused the worst drought conditions in European Russia in a half-century, prompting the Russian government to suspend wheat exports. The drought has caused extreme fire danger over most of European Russia (Figure 3), and fires in Russia have killed at least 50 people in the past week and leveled thousands of homes. The fires are the worst since 1972, when massive forest and peat bog fires burned an area of 100,000 square km and killed at 104 people in the Moscow region alone. Smoke from the current fires spans a region over 3,000 km (1,860 miles) from east to west, approximately the distance from San Francisco to Chicago. Dozens of flights were canceled at Moscow's airports today, thanks to visibilities of 300 meters in smoke. Also of concern is fires that have hit the Bryansk region of western Russia, which suffered radioactive contamination from the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in nearby Ukraine. There are fears that fires may burn through the contaminated area, releasing harmful radiation into the atmosphere.


Figure 3. Fire danger in Russia for August 5, 2010. Extreme fire danger (Category 5, red colors) was seen over much of the European portion of Russia. Image credit: Hydrometcentre, Russia.

Why has Russia's heat wave been so long and intense?
Dr. Rob Carver has done a detailed analysis of the remarkable Russian heat wave in his latest post, The Great Russian Heat Wave of July 2010. A persistent jet stream pattern has set up over Europe, thanks to a phenomena known as blocking. A ridge of high pressure has remained anchored over Russia, and the hot and dry conditions have created helped intensify this ridge in a positive feedback loop. As a result, soil moisture in some portions of European Russia has dropped to levels one would expect only once every 500 years.

Next update
I'll have an update on Saturday morning.

Jeff Masters

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Not even a major hurricane can maintain great convection constantly.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
he wont last not one day on here
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115453
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
That just goes to show that this system is ill-defined and inconsistent.



yes but its looks march better
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115453
Quoting stormpetrol:

That is pattern with this system at nighttime, possible circulation at 17/84.5w, we'll see what tomorrow brings, I still think it has potential as it will probably meander over water another day or two.
That just goes to show that this system is ill-defined and inconsistent.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Convection waning greatly.




That is pattern with this system at nighttime, possible circulation at 17/84.5w, we'll see what tomorrow brings, I still think it has potential as it will probably meander over water another day or two.
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ugh its all most 10pm on the e coast
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115453
1349. hydrus
Quoting MississippiWx:


More to do with no surface convergence.
Something might fire up in a few hours. The weather does weird crap down there this time of the year.
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Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MississippiWx:


More to do with no surface convergence.
Exactly.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
new mode runs i think






Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115453
1344. hydrus
Quoting thelmores:
wish we had a plane down there seeing what is going on...... if anything!

But after scanning around, I see no evidence of a surface circulation at the momoment.... or YET! LOL

Anything in that area is interesting to watch this time of year. Especially with those water temps like they are.
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1343. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
X
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Quoting hydrus:
Could be diurnal minimum.


More to do with no surface convergence.
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Quoting hydrus:
Could be diurnal minimum.
That, and the lack of lower level convergence.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Convection waning greatly.






but looks a better
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115453
1338. hydrus
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Convection waning greatly.



Could be diurnal minimum.
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Convection waning greatly.



Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting robj144:


That's correct, I believe.


Alright. I have another question lol. If a 35 knot storm is designated at lets say... 5AM EDT... would the ACE be calculated at 5AM right on the six-hour interval, or 11AM after six hours has passed since it was designated a 35 knot storm?
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1335. amd
spathy,

I think it would be a quick tuck (assuming that it actually is able to completely get under that convection.

Colin should eventually turn north, although steering currents aren't that strong yet.

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wish we had a plane down there seeing what is going on...... if anything!

But after scanning around, I see no evidence of a surface circulation at the momoment.... or YET! LOL

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1332. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
000
WHXX01 KWBC 061816
CHGHUR
TROPICAL CYCLONE GUIDANCE MESSAGE
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
1816 UTC FRI AUG 6 2010

looks like no new run
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1330. robj144
Quoting HurricaneSwirl:


Yeah I completely understand. What you're saying is that if a storm is like at 60 kts and we are calculating ACE for the storm over a period of 12 hours and it strengthens over those 12 hours, we would not just double the 60 kts squared and then multiply it by 10^-4, but we would add the 60 kts squared to the new strength and then multiply it by 10^-4.


That's correct, I believe.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
GULF OF MEXICO...
WATER VAPOR IMAGERY SHOWS BROAD MID/UPPER LEVEL CYCLONIC
CIRCULATION CENTERED NEAR 23N92W COVERING THE ENTIRE GULF.
HOWEVER...DRY AIR EMBEDDED IN THE CYCLONIC FLOW AROUND THE
MID/UPPER LOW IS KEEPING THIS SYSTEM WITHOUT PRODUCING ANY
SIGNIFICANT CONVECTION...ALLOWING ONLY SCATTERED SHOWERS ACROSS
THE THE BASIN. THESE SHOWERS ARE MOVING WITH THE ANTI-CYCLONIC
FLOW AROUND A WEAK SURFACE HIGH CENTERED NEAR 25N90W. COMPUTER
MODELS INDICATE THIS WEATHER PATTERN WILL CONTINUE OVER THE NEXT
24 HOURS.
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1328. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)


fading away
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Still waiting for the 00z coordinates to do my blog entry...
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Well I got 2 out of the 3 right on the poll!
Member Since: July 5, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 170
1324. amd
spathy,

I think Colin's movement is being controlled more by convection development, and it's tendency to pull the LLC toward that convection.

In this case, it looks like the LLC is just west of the far western part of the latest convection, and moving slowly nne.
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Quoting spathy:

Did I miss something?
Or was this just an ignorant question?
Edit..
Please be brutally honest.
I am an adult I can take it.


Maybe both
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Quoting robj144:


Sorry to correct myself and potentially make it more confusing, but I understand it better now. Supposed we have one storm that has just formed. In the first six hour interval, supposed it's max. winds after six hours is 35 knots. Then after 12 hours, it's 50 knots, and then after 18 hours, it's 70 knots. Then for the first 18 hours of this one storm it's ACE would be (35^2 + 50^2 + 70^2)^10^4 = 0.86 knot^2, for the first 18 hours of the storm. You keep doing this for the entire duration of the storm which will give you an index for that one storm. You do this for every storm of the year and them up, and that's your ACE for the entire year. I believe this is correct now.


Yeah I completely understand. What you're saying is that if a storm is like at 60 kts and we are calculating ACE for the storm over a period of 12 hours and it strengthens over those 12 hours, we would not just double the 60 kts squared and then multiply it by 10^-4, but we would add the 60 kts squared to the new strength and then multiply it by 10^-4.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Hurricanes101:


they seem to be a bit late in coming out
Yeah, usually they come out 35 minutes after the specified time...they're an hour late...
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Any moment. When the ATCF best track comes out, the model follow shortly.


they seem to be a bit late in coming out
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Any moment. When the ATCF best track comes out, the model follow shortly.



can i have a link too the mode runs
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115453
Quoting Tazmanian:



when will they be out?
Any moment. When the ATCF best track comes out, the model follow shortly.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Not out yet.



when will they be out?
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115453
Quoting Tazmanian:
09 what do the new mode runs show for 92 and 93L
Not out yet.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
09 what do the new mode runs show for 92 and 93L
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115453
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
The convection is new. You have to keep in mind that the divergence aloft is what lower surface pressures. If surface pressures aren't lowered the atmosphere isn't going to correspond with convergence in the lower levels. Wait another couple of hours for surface pressures to lower, if they don't, chances for development decrease since there is no convergence (what enhances convection) and pressures are high (the reason that there is no convergence).


Thanks for the explanation :)
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Weak steering currents. There is still motion, it is just much slower than 6 hours ago.



that would give it more time overe water
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115453

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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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