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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Quoting Walshy:

The NWS Storm Prediction Center has issued a
Severe Thunderstorm Watch for portions of


much of northern and central Georgia
parts of southern North Carolina
most of South Carolina
coastal waters




Tornadoes: Very Low
EF2+ Tornadoes: Very Low
Severe Wind: High
65 kt. Wind: Low
Severe Hail: Moderate
2"+ Hail: Low
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting weathermancer:
GOES Vis loops show a new LLC being born in Colin, northwest of the old and dying LLC.
Or is that just an eddy?


No, the circulation slid to the east under the convection.
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INV/93/L
MARK
16.23N/35.32W
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Quoting angiest:
Report's of Colin's death have been greatly exaggerated (before).
If you don't like the Forecast for Colin wait 4 hours..it will change..
Thats been our saying in the islands for the last 3 days..
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GetReal can you explain that picture u posted
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:

Looks like an eddy IMO. And the old LLC isn't dying, it's pushing towards the convection, I think.


It just seemed to have broadened-out a bit on last few frames.
Convection may swallow it up soon, the way its going.

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The NWS Storm Prediction Center has issued a
Severe Thunderstorm Watch for portions of


much of northern and central Georgia
parts of southern North Carolina
most of South Carolina
coastal waters
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting sammywammybamy:
The National Hurricane Center reported a wind gust of 152mph. 10 miles north in Miami downtown they only had 90-100 gusts.

The National Hurricane Center was located in the core of andrew, during andrew.

If the Hurricane has made landfall just 5 miles to the north, their would not have been a miami as you see it today..


Andrew was a small compact storm and NHC was not in the core of that storm where they were located in 1992....They were on US 1 just south of UM and north of where the core came accross (but they did lose their doppler dome from the top of the building).....The current location of NHC is further south but not quite where the core of Andrew was either.
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Quoting unf97:
Bryan Norcross is indeed going to the Weather Channel as an OCM and "Hurricane Specialist". This is an excellent move by TWC as I have a good deal of respect for Norcross. This may make me watch them now during their tropical updates.

Link:

http://twctoday.com/forums/new-ocm-bryan-norcross/


Bryan's good in my book. I was hunkered down in my house back in 1992 watching Andrew spin across the Bahamas and toward me and my two very young children while watching Norcross on the TV. At one point, he said some of the most chilling words I've ever heard: "Absolutely, there is no doubt about it, it is going to happen tonight". I thought I'd killed my family. Anyway, I stayed with him until the power went out, so I've always been a bit grateful...
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if hurricanes are a mechanism used by the earth to balance heat in the atmosphere, wouldn't that mechanism slow or shut down when it's abnormally warm near the poles? Just a thought.


Hurricanes don't care about how hot it is at the poles. They care about the difference in temperature between the sea surface and the upper troposphere where they are located. Now, temperature changes in one part of the planet can have all sorts of ripple effects, but studying those is very complex and is the subject of a number of papers. For the Atlantic basin, two things are near universally agreed on: CAPE will be increasing, but at the same time, so will shear. What will result from the combination of those two factors is where most of the current debate in the scientific community is about. There will be fewer windows of opportunity for development, but faster development in said windows and higher peak storm energies.
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Quoting Jeff9641:
Colin RIP as you look cooked right now. This ULL is shearing him to pieces.


I guess since it isn't a threat to Florida it is RIP, might want to check things again

Colin is far from being dead
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Quoting StormW:
Levi,
Great work as always!


Thanks Storm, you too! Your post should greatly help everyone understand the NAO.
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284 - A week or two ago I posited that heating of the poles would reduce tropical cyclone activity for similar reasons. Although the oceans might be warmer the atmospheric conditions necessary for tropical cyclone development would not be as strong.
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Quoting weathermancer:
GOES Vis loops show a new LLC being born in Colin, northwest of the old and dying LLC.
Or is that just an eddy?



Looks like an eddy IMO. And the old LLC isn't dying, it's pushing towards the convection, I think.
Member Since: July 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5725
Quoting DVG:


Appreciate your work. The split you refer to I believe Bastardi called a few days ago. Yes?


I believe he mentioned the possibility 2 days ago.
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Nah, there will probably be no lull until November now. Even if the models don't show much development we still have to watch for trough splits and vigorous African waves.


I'm not so sure...There will probably be a lull for about a week...
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Quoting StormChaser81:


Yup, that comment was pointed at somebody.

Lol, ok.
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I've also been noticing a pattern w/ this season's storms so far... flare during the day, fizzle at night. What's up with that?
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22736
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
There's a fairly high chance we will see TS Danielle from Invest 93L, and then probably a lull for about 7-10 days. After that, the tropics really start.
Nah, there will probably be no lull until November now. Even if the models don't show much development we still have to watch for trough splits and vigorous African waves.
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
It's organizing. Upper level conditions are slowly becoming more conducive, if the wind shear was as strong as it was 12 hours ago the LLC wouldn't have been able to slide under the deep convection to its east.



Yup, that comment was pointed at somebody.

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04L/TS/C
MARK
27.36N/66.93W
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GOES Vis loops show a new LLC being born in Colin, northwest of the old and dying LLC.
Or is that just an eddy?


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There's a fairly high chance we will see TS Danielle from Invest 93L, and then probably a lull for about 7-10 days. After that, the tropics really start.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Afternoon all.

Wow... the Russian heat story is amazing. This is why when I hear pple talking about how there can't be GW because it was so cold last winter where they are in FL, I have to laugh. By that standard of reasoning, to all those Russians, yes there is, too, GW.... If ur going to argue for or against this global and long-term trend, u can't take one summer or one winter in one part of the world to prove your point. To put it another way, we've had very few days over 90 degrees here this summer, and we usually get quite a few in the low 90s during July. It would actually make sense to leave Russia [polar] and come to the Bahamas [tropics] in order to cool off....

I'm wondering now if the fact that there is so much abnormal heat near the polar regions is having an impact on hurricane formation.... if hurricanes are a mechanism used by the earth to balance heat in the atmosphere, wouldn't that mechanism slow or shut down when it's abnormally warm near the poles? Just a thought.
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22736
Quoting StormChaser81:


Exactly no clue what is really going on with Colin.

Better check the satellite again.
It's organizing. Upper level conditions are slowly becoming more conducive, if the wind shear was as strong as it was 12 hours ago the LLC wouldn't have been able to slide under the deep convection to its east.

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Quoting SaintPatrick:
models on 92l?
i can't get anyone to answer my question either:( i would guess that the models will come in about 12 hours since they canceled it this morning.
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Report's of Colin's death have been greatly exaggerated (before).
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Quoting FloridaHeat:
wow i did not realize that russia was also suffering under a heat wave i feel like the whole northern hemisphere is suffering right along with them

Check on Wikipedia, "2010 Northern Hemisphere Summer Heat Wave". Or something like that. Can't remember the article well. I know it's there.
Member Since: July 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5725
92l putting on quite a show at the moment in terms of convection as it heads towards the Yucatan but air pressure is not dropping in the vicinity:

Station 42057
NDBC
Location: 16.834N 81.501W
Conditions as of:
Fri, 6 Aug 2010 16:50:00 UTC

Winds: ESE (110) at 15.5 kt gusting to 17.5 kt
Significant Wave Height: 4.6 ft
Dominant Wave Period: 6 sec
Atmospheric Pressure: 29.90 in and risingAir Temperature: 81.5 F
Dew Point: 76.6 F
Water Temperature: 84.4 F

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make that a surface llc forming at 17.5N,82.5W,I was looking at a old loop, don't know how that happend!!!,lol
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


?


Exactly no clue what is really going on with Colin.

Better check the satellite again.
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Quoting all4hurricanes:

I think convection is starting to flare up over the center again


It is.
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Quoting Jeff9641:
Colin RIP as you look cooked right now. This ULL is shearing him to pieces.
Upper level conditions continue to get more conducive for development as the ULL north of Colin continues to move off towards the NE. As that happens an upper level ridge should develop above Colin propelling the system to intensify. The 12z SHIPS text suggests that upper level conditions should become favorable in less than 18 hours.
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models on 92l?
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INV/92/L
MARK
16.53N/83.17W
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Quoting Jeff9641:
Colin RIP as you look cooked right now. This ULL is shearing him to pieces.


?
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Yes!!! Its going to be 100 °F Monday and Tuesday!!! SOOOOO much cooler!!!
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wow i did not realize that russia was also suffering under a heat wave i feel like the whole northern hemisphere is suffering right along with them
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Quoting unf97:
Bryan Norcross is indeed going to the Weather Channel as an OCM and "Hurricane Specialist". This is an excellent move by TWC as I have a good deal of respect for Norcross. This may make me watch them now during their tropical updates.

Link:

http://twctoday.com/forums/new-ocm-bryan-norcross/


100% false info. Rick Knabb is the Hurricane Specialist
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Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
Before 2005 I had never heard of Bryan Norcross---then I did on the Wunderblogs. Read his hurricane book--well done!
Yup. I love to go on youtube and search all those old T.V broadcasts of landfalling hurricanes, and I learned that during Andrew he was the only person on T.V. I also remember him during Katrina, I don't know when he left CBS4 though.
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Like what is that big blob in the Caribbean sea
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http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/04/21/this-is-why-you-dont-put-an-official-noaa-temperature-sensor-ov er-concrete/
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261. 7544
yeap sky he is thats a great move for them
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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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