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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1859. JLPR2
Quoting EricSFL:
JLPR2 do you have the link for the pouch track?


Link
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1858. EricSFL
JLPR2 do you have the link for the pouch track?
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92l had lack of surface low pressure and no model support and was going to run out of time anyways due to land. no smiley.
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Interesting ASCAT pass for 93L:

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1855. JLPR2
Hm, it's PGI25L!



Love this pouch tracking thing. XD
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Quoting ddbweatherking:


Yea i wasn't on here often. I lived in the capital city of Dhaka and it is about 100 miles inland so the effects weren't as bad as the coastal region. Thanks for the info. Good night everyone


Yeah. 'Tis unfortunate. All too often, inland impacts are considered negligible, and largely forgotten due to the immensity of the coastal event. But I've been through several hurricanes despite being around 80 miles inland. The ignorant assertion that inland impacts pale in comparison to coastal ones is a baseless myth that no sensible person would adhere to.

And no problem. Good night.
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1853. JLPR2
The disturbance is entering the CATL view


Well, it seems we have a new blob to watch. XD
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Quoting KoritheMan:


I don't remember you, but I'm glad you survived Sidr. That thing was monstrous.

Anyway, I believe recon will be flying in around noon tomorrow.


Yea i wasn't on here often. I lived in the capital city of Dhaka and it is about 100 miles inland so the effects weren't as bad as the coastal region. Thanks for the info. Good night everyone. I can't wait to see what Colin looks like and how strong it is when i wake up.
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1851. xcool
ha
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1850. JLPR2
Quoting EricSFL:


You tell me! I got a very offensive email in Spanish from him the other day with the heading being one of those :(


LOL!
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Quoting JLPR2:


You got a point there, seems like a wave, aren't TWs stronger at the 700mb level?


Yes they are. Which is why I share your opinion that this a tropical wave, or at least a developing one.
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1848. JLPR2
Some models updated other didn't.


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1847. EricSFL
Quoting JLPR2:


haha! yeah, speacially in this style, :(, right champ? :)


You tell me! I got a very offensive email in Spanish from him the other day with the heading being one of those :(
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1845. JLPR2
Quoting KoritheMan:


Actually, you're correct, and I'm wrong. I was looking at the wrong area. It appears this area is more organized than I thought. Still, it does appear to be embedded within the ITCZ, and I'd wager that most, if not all of the associated convection, is due to interaction with the ITCZ.


You got a point there, seems like a wave, aren't TWs stronger at the 700mb level?
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Quoting ddbweatherking:
Hi, i am not new on the blog but i haven't commented for years. I used to live in Bangladesh, near India (i doubt any of you remember me), but now i live in Bethesda, Maryland. I went through Cyclone Sidr which killed thousands but was my first tropical cyclone encounter. I am looking forward to commenting on and off on the blog! My first question is, do any of you know when the next recon plane is scheduled to be near Colin?


I don't remember you, but I'm glad you survived Sidr. That thing was monstrous.

Anyway, I believe recon will be flying in around noon tomorrow.
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Quoting xcool:
ECMWF,next..


Don't think I'm gonna make it that far tonight. I'm outta practice. Have ta sleep extra late tomorrow to get back in the swing of things. Lol. Night xcool, bt, Grothar, GROTHAR, GROTHAR!!! Ok, when he wakes up again tell him night for me. Lol.
SmileyCentral.com all!!
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1842. JLPR2
Quoting EricSFL:
But we all know who the king of the smiley faces is: -_-


haha! yeah, speacially in this style, :(, right champ? :)
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Quoting JLPR2:
Seems to be in the mid levels mostly, with a faint reflection at the surface.



Actually, you're correct, and I'm wrong. I was looking at the wrong area. It appears this area is more organized than I thought. Still, it does appear to be embedded within the ITCZ, and I'd wager that most, if not all of the associated convection, is due to interaction with the ITCZ.
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1840. JLPR2
Quoting KoritheMan:
On the other hand, this ASCAT pass from 0456 UTC does reveal something resembling a surface circulation:



There has to be something down there to cause that SW, not much right now, but if it maintains it convection for a day we could see it organize, besides it has the benefit of having 93L as a shield for dry air.
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1839. EricSFL
But we all know who the king of the smiley faces is: -_-
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Hi, i am not new on the blog but i haven't commented for years. I used to live in Bangladesh, near India (i doubt any of you remember me), but now i live in Bethesda, Maryland. I went through Cyclone Sidr which killed thousands but was my first tropical cyclone encounter. I am looking forward to commenting on and off on the blog! My first question is, do any of you know when the next recon plane is scheduled to be near Colin?
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On the other hand, this ASCAT pass from 0456 UTC does reveal something resembling a surface circulation:

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1836. JLPR2
Seems to be in the mid levels mostly, with a faint reflection at the surface.

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1834. JLPR2
Quoting KoritheMan:


I think his overall qualm is that sflawavedude uses smileys in an obnoxious way, as if he's actually a professional forecaster. While you, on the other hand, do not.


I'm just a cheerful person. :D
LOL!
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1833. JLPR2
Quoting KoritheMan:


Looking at CIMSS data, it's not really all that well organized, if at all. There is little associated shower activity where the strongest low- to mid-level vorticity is. Additionally, any convergence and divergence associated with the system is occurring west of the vorticity maximum.

NHC isn't currently identifying it as a tropical wave, either.


I'm wondering why the NHC is not acknowledging its existence, like pre-90L.
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Quoting JLPR2:


Hey! I do that! >:(

Don't attack the smileys! LOL!


I think his overall qualm is that sflawavedude uses smileys in an obnoxious way, as if he's actually a professional forecaster. While you, on the other hand, do not.
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Quoting JLPR2:


The one to 93L's SE

Oh! But that SW wind in not in the system itself, its close to it.


Looking at CIMSS data, it's not really all that well organized, if at all. There is little associated shower activity where the strongest low- to mid-level vorticity is. Additionally, any convergence and divergence associated with the system is occurring west of the vorticity maximum.

NHC isn't currently identifying it as a tropical wave, either.
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1829. EricSFL
Interesting
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1828. JLPR2
Quoting btwntx08:
also sflawavedude plz dont post similes on every comment u make are u happy a little ro much


Hey! I do that! >:(

Don't attack the smileys! LOL!
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1827. xcool
hmm
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1826. JLPR2
Quoting KoritheMan:


Which disturbance is this?


The one to 93L's SE

Oh! But that SW wind in not in the system itself, its close to it.
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Quoting JLPR2:
That area is looking nice and lookie,

Full-screen
Station 13001
Prediction and Research Moored Array in the Atlantic
Location: 11.46N 23.01W
Conditions as of:
Sat, 07 Aug 2010 03:00:00 UTC
Winds: SW (220°) at 5.1 kt
Atmospheric Pressure: 29.90 in
Water Temperature: 81.3 F

this is to that disturbance's SE
SW winds!


Which disturbance is this?
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Quoting EricSFL:


Hes just like reedzone. If by coincidence his "forecast" holds true, he brags about it.


Point taken.
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1822. JLPR2
That area is looking nice and lookie,

Station 13001
Prediction and Research Moored Array in the Atlantic
Location: 11.46N 23.01W
Conditions as of:
Sat, 07 Aug 2010 03:00:00 UTC
Winds: SW (220) at 5.1 kt
Atmospheric Pressure: 29.90 in
Water Temperature: 81.3 F

this is to that disturbance's SE
SW winds!
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1821. EricSFL
Quoting KoritheMan:


But was your reasoning based on science, or did you just happen to correctly guess through some miraculous chance? That's what matters. :)


Hes just like reedzone. If by coincidence his "forecast" holds true, he brags about it.
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Quoting btwntx08:
all im saying i had 92L not developing and sflwavedude took it like it was gonna develop he needs to look at our experts and what they say that has a shot at development


Right. First and foremost, experts should always supersede the opinions and forecasts of others. Luckily, there are quite a few of us here who are knowledgeable enough about the tropics so that we can actually compliment the forecast of the professionals (generally).
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1819. xcool
ECMWF,next..
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1818. xcool
JLPR2 .welcome.
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Quoting sflawavedude:
I never gave it a chance I said it would fizzle out and it did even before land. :)


But was your reasoning based on science, or did you just happen to correctly guess through some miraculous chance? That's what matters. :)
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1815. JLPR2
Quoting xcool:


image


thank you!
dang, it looks better than I thought LOL!
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1814. xcool


image
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I never gave it a chance I said it would fizzle out and it did even before land. :)
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Quoting btwntx08:
sflwavedude doesnt know tropics and if u dont u will be biting dust urself :)


It's obvious that a fair bit here don't. Thank god we have people like Levi, myself, Drak, StormW, 456, etc., to set things straight for the laymen looking for answers.
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1810. EricSFL
ALERT condition red
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Quoting Grothar:


Funniest line tonight. Would you settle for Madonna? Heard she has a whole staff. Think 93L will stay away from the islands?


I heard she has had more than just A whole staff...
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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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