Potentially dangerous 92L steadily developing; Igor nears hurricane strength

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:04 PM GMT on September 11, 2010

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A tropical disturbance (92L) over the Eastern Caribbean, a few hundred miles south of Puerto Rico, is steadily organizing and appears likely to develop into a tropical depression by tonight or Sunday morning. Satellite loops show an impressive and expanding region of heavy thunderstorms, with good spiral banding and respectable upper-level outflow on all sides. Long range radar out of Puerto Rico shows that heavy rains are now affecting that island, but there is no rotation to the radar echoes evident. However, the rain bands are becoming more intense and more organized. San Juan, Puerto Rico reported a heavy rain squall at 8:44 am this morning, and radar estimates suggest two inches of rain fell in this squall just southeast of San Juan. Wind shear over 92L is low, 5 - 10 knots. The waters beneath are at near-record warmth, 30°C, and these warm waters extend to great depth. Water vapor satellite loops show a large area of dry air lies to the north and west of 92L, and this dry air could interfere with development at times over the next few days.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of 92L.

Track forecast for 92L
The disturbance is moving west-northwest at 11 mph, and steering currents favor a continuation of this motion for the next three days. Model support for development is scattered. The GFS and NOGAPS models do not develop 92L. The GFDL and ECMWF models predict development, with a track taking 92L into Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula on Wednesday. The HWRF model has a more northwesterly track, taking 92L over the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Cuba, but this model has been trending too far north in its tracks. I expect 92L will follow a path south of the islands, bringing it near or just south of Jamaica on Monday, then into the Yucatan Peninsula on Wednesday. On this track, the southern Dominican Republic can expect heavy rains of 3 - 6 inches tonight through Monday morning; southern Haiti can expect similar rains Sunday through Monday, and Jamaica and the Cayman Islands can expect heavier rains of 4 - 8 inches Monday and Tuesday. Eastern Cuba will probably escape 92L's heaviest rains in this scenario (Figure 2.)

Intensity forecast for 92L
I can't find any reason to doubt this will be a tropical storm by Sunday or Monday, and potentially a Category 1 or 2 hurricane by Wednesday, if 92L avoids passage over Hispaniola and Cuba. The SHIPS model predicts wind shear will remain low, 5 - 10 knots, through the period, and makes 92L a Category 1 hurricane by Monday night. Water temperatures are certainly warm enough to support development. The main detriment to intensification is likely to be dry air, and 92L could wrap in some of the dry air to its northwest at times, slowing down development. The first Air Force Hurricane Hunter mission into 92L is scheduled for Sunday afternoon, but there will be a research mission by the National Center for Atmospheric Research G-V jet today that will give us valuable information on 92L's large scale environment and potential for development.


Figure 2. Forecast rain amounts from 92L from the 2am EDT Saturday run of the GFDL model. This model predicts most of 92L's heaviest rains will miss Haiti, but will affect Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, and the Yucatan Peninsula. Image credit: Morris Bender, NOAA/GFDL.

Igor
Tropical Storm Igor is very close to hurricane strength, and appears destined to become a large and powerful major hurricane over the Central Atlantic in the days to come. Wind shear is moderate, 15 - 20 knots, waters are warm, 28°C, and Igor has moistened its environment enough to keep the dry air of the Saharan Air Layer (SAL) at bay. Igor will track west under the influence of a strong ridge of high pressure for the next three days, then turn more to the west-northwest in response to the steering influence of a broad trough of low pressure moving across the Western Atlantic on Tuesday and Wednesday. This should allow Igor to pass several hundred miles to the northeast of the Lesser Antilles. In the longer range, Igor may be a threat to Bermuda, and has a slight chance of making landfall on the U.S. East Coast or Canada. Climatology shows that about 10% of all tropical cyclones that have existed at Igor's current position have gone on to hit the U.S. East Coast; these odds are about 10% for Bermuda and 5% for Canada. The forecast steering pattern for the coming two weeks from the GFS model shows a continuation of the pattern we've seen all hurricane season, with regular strong troughs of low pressure moving off the U.S. East Coast. This pattern favors Igor eventually recurving out to sea without affecting any land areas. The odds of Igor hitting land in the U.S. or Canada are probably close to their climatological 10% and 5% probabilities, respectively.

Elsewhere in the tropics
A new tropical wave (Invest 93L) emerged from the coast of Africa yesterday, and is already showing signs of organization. Most of the models predict 93L will develop into a tropical depression 2 - 4 days from now, and NHC is giving 93L a 30% chance of developing by Monday.

Next post
This may be my only post today; I'll have a new post Sunday morning.

Jeff Masters

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1923. Jerrob
Could someone please post a link to the NOGAPS models? Thxs.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AtHomeInTX:


92l disappears. That's so weird the NHC is adament this will develop and now more models dump it. Well at least it's interesting. Lol.


funny, I didn't even notice that...
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Quoting KoritheMan:


No snow this year, IMO. La Nina won't allow it.

I'm in Louisiana too, btw. I'm also a snow lover, but objectively, there's little reason to expect a frigid winter.


I am also a southern snow lover out here in Raleigh, not going to snow here too either due to La Nina (at least not likely to).
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1920. xcool
:) I forgot about nasa
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15675
Quoting traumaboyy:


Lucky??....I had snow four times last year!! in FLORIDA!!


well then......it sucked for you too!!!
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1918. Grothar
Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
Regarding the 'very old met' who said that forecasting aids make forecasting more difficult, hurricane forecasting has become far more accurate than it was even 20 or 30 years ago. Track error for two or three days out is much less. I suspect the 'very old met' is just a bit resentful that forecasting technology has progressed beyond his understanding. "By cracky back in the day we forecasted with slide rules and protractors and straightedges! We didn't have computers tell US what to do!" It's a slight on the forecasters of today, who do use models as tools, but also use observations and experience and insight.


That is very good. It bears repeating. Oh, I see you did! LOL
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Quoting TampaSpin:


Yep, keep an eye what happens before the models show with the lines on a Graph. Keep an eye open if the high gets off the east coast too fast before Igor gets there......thata be very bad news.


Oh yes it will be, but if it does happen, it's going to be all chaos here. My grandma's down from MA and she has dementia, and she's here for my cousin's wedding thsi coming Saturday, and there will be more of my family coming down beforehand, more from MA and some from OR.
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Quoting JLPR2:


What was that? It looks like Igor broke something there. :\


Its called 'jumping the trough'...takes a pro!

The Navy folk (NOGAPS) got this thing allll figured out!
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Quoting caneswatch:


You got me, I mean today lol


MR. U, what in the world happened to your football team today. I though hurricanes was a strong piece of energy.......LOL
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1913. EricSFL
Quoting xcool:
JLPR2 hmm Infrared Channel 2 Loop black outt


Are these blackouts occassional/accidental or are they intended for system maintenance?
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Quoting jodi4lsu:


us either...but i have decided after the last two years, i am not a big fan of the snow....it's pretty while it is falling, but nobody knows how to drive in it!!! makes for a busy day in the neighborhood....


It's easy! Go slow, don't hit the accelerator too hard, utilize your ABS correctly, and a few other tips. I do feel bad when it snows down there though, even in Charlotte where my aunt is, it becomes a real mess when it snows even just a few inches.

ABS alone has saved my car, and maybe my life, a few times.
Member Since: August 5, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 290
Quoting Kowaliga:


OK, now what.........?


92l disappears. That's so weird the NHC is adament this will develop and now more models dump it. Well at least it's interesting. Lol.
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1910. Jerrob
Ok, couldnt sleep..thought I would check out the tropics..Seems like conversations think the high may be moving off east coast a little faster than planned?? That's not good news.
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1906. JLPR2
Quoting xcool:
JLPR2 hmm Infrared Channel 2 Loop black outt


This one updates, even during the blackout. Maybe it's goes 15?
Link
Someone knows?
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1905. angiest
Quoting F4PHANTOM:
any particular seasons come to your mind?


2004 was active, we all know about 2005.

2007 was pretty active, no? And then 2008...
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 16 Comments: 4766
Quoting Kowaliga:


OK, now what.........?


NOGAPS can't be trusted, I feel personally that Igor will be east of where NOGAPS puts it and west of where GFS puts it, see my new forecast on Igor.
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1903. 7544
Quoting caneswatch:


Thank you very much Tampa. What you're showing with the models showing Igor moving west because of certain factors is very interesting. Definitely need to keep an eye on it here in South Florida.



+ 1
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Quoting angiest:


Don't you mean today? ;) Presumably it is Sunday for you, since you seem to be east of me...


You got me, I mean today lol
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1901. angiest
Quoting jodi4lsu:


us either...but i have decided after the last two years, i am not a big fan of the snow....it's pretty while it is falling, but nobody knows how to drive in it!!! makes for a busy day in the neighborhood....


That's why southern cities should shut down for snow.

Houston does it for ice, which is somewhat more common here than snow.
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 16 Comments: 4766
1899. JLPR2
Quoting Kowaliga:


OK, now what.........?


What was that? It looks like Igor broke something there. :\
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1898. xcool
JLPR2 hmm Infrared Channel 2 Loop black outt
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15675
Quoting AtHomeInTX:


Yeah its been weird. Other than the hurricanes we've had snow two years in a row and Beaumont had a tornado. Like I said we don't know which way to turn. Lol. Well that's the g-rated version anyway. ;)


us either...but i have decided after the last two years, i am not a big fan of the snow....it's pretty while it is falling, but nobody knows how to drive in it!!! makes for a busy day in the neighborhood....
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1896. angiest
Quoting caneswatch:


I don't need to study, no tests coming up lol. I just need to finish up some homework tomorrow, and that's it.


Don't you mean today? ;) Presumably it is Sunday for you, since you seem to be east of me...
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 16 Comments: 4766
Quoting caneswatch:


Thank you very much Tampa. What you're showing with the models showing Igor moving west because of certain factors is very interesting. Definitely need to keep an eye on it here in South Florida.


Yep, keep an eye what happens before the models show with the lines on a Graph. Keep an eye open if the high gets off the east coast too fast before Igor gets there......thata be very bad news.
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Quoting KoritheMan:


Hey! I resent that! I rather like snow! :P


I don't have a problem with snow.....but let me tell you from experience......every time I saw snow.....IT WAS COLD!!!!
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Quoting Grothar:


What are you doing up so late, you should be studying!


I don't need to study, no tests coming up lol. I just need to finish up some homework tomorrow, and that's it.
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OK, now what.........?
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Quoting TampaSpin:


Bro, you have been on here for a while and you are very well respected as a young blogger. Props to you! You respect others while you may disagree. When i make a post with an opinon i try to always back things up with models or facts that i believe which is an opinion. What i don't like is when peeps disagree about a pure opinion but, can't back up what they claim to disagree with. Your Cool my friend.


Thank you very much Tampa. What you're showing with the models showing Igor moving west because of certain factors is very interesting. Definitely need to keep an eye on it here in South Florida.
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Quoting Krycek1984:


LOLLLLLLLLLLLLL Oh, that's great. That gave me a good laugh, I needed it.
maybe he is 60....
Member Since: July 31, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 730
Quoting jodi4lsu:


lucky!!!


Lucky??....I had snow four times last year!! in FLORIDA!!
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removed duplicate.
Member Since: May 16, 2009 Posts: 1 Comments: 1231
When is the next ASCAT pass for 92L?
Member Since: May 16, 2009 Posts: 1 Comments: 1231
Quoting traumaboyy:


No more snow please!!.....That's why I live in FLORIDA!!


Snow is so beautiful! It's half the reason I want a solarium/conservatory...so I can sit out underneath the sky and watch the beautiful snow fall. And a fireplace behind me. Enchanting!
Member Since: August 5, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 290
Quoting traumaboyy:


No more snow please!!.....That's why I live in FLORIDA!!


Hey! I resent that! I rather like snow! :P
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Quoting jodi4lsu:


yep....southeast louisiana, been there, done that, got the t-shirt!!! ready for winter as well, curious if we will see snow again this year. seems when we get snow, we have a mild hurricane season the following year. crazy weather down here for sure!!!


Yeah its been weird. Other than the hurricanes we've had snow two years in a row and Beaumont had a tornado. Like I said we don't know which way to turn. Lol. Well that's the g-rated version anyway. ;)
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Quoting traumaboyy:


No more snow please!!.....That's why I live in FLORIDA!!


lucky!!!
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Quoting jodi4lsu:


well then next hurricane season might get a little hairy....warm winter = busy season! but you know this already.....i'm just learining about these weather patterns...just interested, find weather fascinating!


Historically speaking, if we have an active hurricane season, the following year, barring an unexpected El Nino, is almost always more active than the previous.
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Quoting JLPR2:


92L feeling happy again


Someone must have seeded that one with cialis!!!
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1878. JLPR2
Quoting xcool:
DAM BLACK OUT


There's no blackout for 92L
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Quoting Krycek1984:
It still continues to shock me that no one edits or corrects JB's posts/articles whatever you want to call them. With the money he makes, and the money Accuweather makes, you would think they could afford an editor to go over these posts and make them seem a bit more professional.

For a professional individual like JB to spit out poorly written posts/blogs/articles (whatever) like that makes people take him less seriously, whether subconsciously or consciously.


ok and I understand that. now disprove what he said about the NA winters and the arctic volcanoes. JB is arrogant but he is very very intelligent.
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1875. JLPR2


92L feeling happy again
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Quoting Krycek1984:


Seriously, are you 13 too? Going to tattle on someone? Get a grip. Either that or tattle and don't announce it to the whole blog.

and really, he ain't gonna be happy? what on earth does this mean? he might *&&&^^%% us to death?
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1873. Grothar
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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.