The Atlantic is quiet; Russian heat wave ends; huge 926 mb South Indian Ocean storm

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:09 PM GMT on August 19, 2010

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A tropical wave in the western Caribbean approaching Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula is generating disorganized thunderstorms. Wind shear is a moderate 10 - 15 knots over the region, and water vapor satellite images show that there is some dry air to the west that will interfere with any development that might occur. None of the reliable computer models develop this wave, and NHC is giving it a 10% chance of developing into a tropical depression.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of the disturbed region of weather of the coast of Africa, south of the Cape Verdes Islands.

The GFS, NOGAPS, and ECMWF models continue to predict that a tropical storm will form between Africa and the Lesser Antilles Islands sometime in the period 3 - 6 days from now. There is an area of disturbed weather south of the Cape Verdes Islands, but there is no obvious organization to the cloud pattern. Wind shear is a hefty 20 - 30 knots in the region, and the disturbance is a 1 - 2 day journey away from reaching a lower shear area where development can occur. Preliminary indications are that if a storm did develop in this region, it would track west-northwest and pass well to the northeast of the Lesser Antilles Islands 7 - 8 days from now. However, 7-day forecasts of a storm that hasn't even formed yet are not to be trusted.


Figure 2. The cold front that brought an end to the Great Russian Heat Wave of 2010 lies east of Moscow in the NASA MODIS photo taken at 8:35 UTC August 19, 2010. Smoke from wildfires is visible over a wide swath of Russia east of the front. Image credit: NASA.

The Great Russian Heat Wave of 2010 ends
A powerful cold front swept through Russia yesterday and today, finally bringing an end to the Great Russian Heat Wave of 2010. Temperatures at Moscow's Domodedovo airport hit 25°C (77°F) today, which is still 4°C (7°F) above average, but the high temperature since late June. Moscow has seen 62 consecutive days with a high temperature above average, but the latest forecast for Moscow predicts that remarkable string will come to an end Friday, when the high will reach just 17°C (62°F).

Massive 926 mb extratropical storm generating huge waves off Antarctica
One of the most intense extratropical storms in recent years is churning up the waters near the coast of Antarctica in the South Indian Ocean. The powerful storm peaked in intensity yesterday afternoon with a central pressure of 926 mb--the type of pressure typically found in a Category 4 hurricane. Storms this intense form on average once per year, or perhaps less often, according to an email I received from Jeff Callaghan of the Australia Bureau of Meteorology. Since extratropical storms do not form eyewalls, the winds at the surface from this monster storm probably reached "only" 100 - 120 mph (equivalent to a Category 2 or 3 hurricane.) The storm is forecast to generate huge waves with a significant wave height of 13 meters (44 feet) today, according to the NOAA Wavewatch III model (Figure 3.) I have flown into an extratropical storm this intense--in 1989, I participated in a field project based in Maine that intercepted a remarkable extratropical storm that "bombed" into a 928 mb low south of the Canadian Maritime provinces. You can read my story of that somewhat harrowing flight here.


Figure 3. Satellite image taken at 8:10 UTC August 19, 2010, showing the intense extratropical cyclone that has weakened to 940 mb in the South Indian Ocean near the coast of Antarctica. Image credit: NASA.


Figure 4. Surface pressure analysis from 18 UTC August 18, 2010, showing a 926 mb low in the South Indian Ocean, just north of Antarctica. Image credit: Jeff Callaghan, Australia Bureau of Meteorology.


Figure 5. Predicted wave height from the NOAA Wavewatch III model for 2pm EDT (18 UTC) today, August 19, 2010. Peak wave heights of 13 meters (44 feet) are projected over ocean areas between Antarctica and Australia. Long-period waves (19 seconds between crests) up to 7 meters (22 feet) high are predicted to affect the southwest coast of Australia by Sunday. The waves are predicted to propagate eastwards to New Zealand 8 - 9 days from now, and be a respectable 4 - 5 meters high then.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting clwstmchasr:


Jason, didn't you just say a few minutes ago that it was not going to be a fish storm????


He Sure did:

At 36 hours, ridging filling in between the A/B high and Florida. There's also a small ridge just off to the west of the depression THAT MEAN NO FISH STORM....
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Guys calm down.. it's a useless model run, even if it had it going west. Nothing is written in stone until a storm forms! That's it, plain and simple. It's not going to recurve or hit the USA just yet.
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Quoting jason2010xxxx:
fish storm ,fish storm ,fish storm


Make up your mind
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Quoting DestinJeff:
I smell something Fishy.


Gotta love the fish!
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this is what I think GFS has the ridging a little too weak and norh and the trough a little too strong and pre-CV storm too far norh and east I say this may very well happem the high get stronger the rough ge weaker and the CV sorm ploughs further west and south
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Quoting clwstmchasr:


Jason, didn't you just say a few minutes ago that it was not going to be a fish storm????


I was about to say that.
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Quoting GoodOleBudSir:


Dumb question.....but why do they call it a recurve and not a curve?

That's like people who say "irregardless".
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Don't be sad about the CV storm, you guys can always watch ex 5 do the loop de loo with us again.
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Quoting jrweatherman:
GFS show is over disappointment sets in again. Back in 6 hours.


What's disappointing? It shows a major hurricane.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24251
Quoting MTWX:

So Pat.. do you think ex TD5 is going to make another loop??


I'm not Pat, but I don' think so. Even if it did, it wouldn't develop, as its durface circulation has dissipated. It only has a circulation aloft.

-Snow
Member Since: April 1, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 2699
It looks like GFS may once again fail to develop CV #2 that it had for several runs.
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213. JRRP
Quoting IKE:


And further east again.

yea
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GFS show is over disappointment sets in again. Back in 6 hours.
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Quoting IKE:


And further east again.


Until a storm actually forms, every model run is inaccurate. This is not heading to the USA or heading out to sea yet, we don't know.
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208. MTWX
Quoting Patrap:
Im Wandering,,


So Pat.. do you think ex TD5 is going to make another loop??
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Quoting IKE:


Look at the upper air pattern at 156 hours...headed to fish-land.



And apparently well east over Bermuda. This would make a spectacular storm to watch on satellite if the track and intensity were actually to verify.
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We'll probably get a slowly organizing wave turning into TD #6 Saturday. After that, intensification should go much faster with a favorable enviroment. It'll likely get to hurricane status Tuesday...
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204. IKE
Quoting JRRP:
more north on this run


And further east again.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
East of Bermuda again on this run
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201. IKE
Quoting angiest:
So, will the storm plow through those high pressure centers towards the low, or will it get deflected back to the west?



Look at the upper air pattern at 156 hours...headed to fish-land.

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting KanKunKid:


Kingston Trio what was that 1965? You're showing yer age..

.."Through the open window she hands Charley a sandwich as the train comes rumbln' through..."


I'm actually only 43 but grew up outside of Boston so the song was pretty popular when I was a kid growing up.
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Quoting reedzone:


Any run that shows a storm when it's not even formed is nonsense, but fun to watch. I'm not sold on anything until a Tropical Storm forms.


+1
Member Since: April 1, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 2699
198. JRRP
more north on this run
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Quoting neonlazer:

Yes, it is. lol


I remember a few of the models were showing it might do another loop around over us and back into the GOM. I guess it is just going to keep on trying...the little storm that could.
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Quoting angiest:


Well, this run is starting to show an extremely squished A/B ridge now, between the CV storm and a weak to moderate low to the north.


The key thing is "this run". It will change over and over again. Nothing has even developed yet.
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Looks like another recurvature on the 12Z GFS
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So, will the storm plow through those high pressure centers towards the low, or will it get deflected back to the west?

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Storm, the latest NAO index shows exactly what I thought the 6z GFS showed a day ago, with a New England Landfall happening. With a NAO index bottoming out right now the A/B high is at its weakest point now, but then the index shows the NAO moving towards a neutral and then positive phase indicating a strengthening high and perhaps a strong westward extension of the high over time, closer to when the hurricane makes its closest approach to the US East Coast.
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Quoting Snowlover123:


Good Afternoon, Reedzone! :)

I agree with you there... ;)


Any run that shows a storm when it's not even formed is nonsense, but fun to watch. I'm not sold on anything until a Tropical Storm forms.
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
remember models are meant to be used as guidance only and donot depict final outcome in any single event things can and will change


+1
Member Since: April 1, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 2699
remember models are meant to be used as guidance only and donot depict final outcome in any single event things can and will change
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I'm posting the 12z GFS images on #177
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Ah, ok. thanks Storm. I understand. If this becomes a major hurricane, I am very fearful of the destruction that could take place especially given the atmospheric conditions already in place.
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Quoting Kristina40:
Patrap, isn't that ex 5 doing another loop? That poor storm is like Charlie on the MTA.

Yes, it is. lol
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Quoting Snowlover123:


Good Afternoon, Reedzone! :)

I agree with you there... ;)


Well, this run is starting to show an extremely squished A/B ridge now, between the CV storm and a weak to moderate low to the north.
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Patrap, isn't that ex 5 doing another loop? That poor storm is like Charlie on the MTA.
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Quoting reedzone:
I did say the models will shift westward in time, maybe this afternoon?


Good Afternoon, Reedzone! :)

I agree with you there... ;)
Member Since: April 1, 2010 Posts: 9 Comments: 2699
My my, stronger ridging building in on this run. And a low off the east coast and one over LA:

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Storm,

you were asking what period the model runs were. Thanks
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Quoting reedzone:
I did say the models will shift westward in time, maybe this afternoon?


Hour 102:



Hour 108:



Hour 114:



Hour 120:



Hour 126:



Hour 132:



Hour 138:



Hour 144:



Hour 150:



Hour 156:



Hour 162:



Hour 168:



Hour 174:



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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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