Igor turns west-northwest; Julia a hurricane; 92L growing more organized

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:49 PM GMT on September 14, 2010

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Hurricane Igor remains an impressive Category 4 hurricane with 135 mph winds over the Central Atlantic. Though Igor's winds are 15 mph weaker than at its 150 mph peak yesterday, the hurricane continues to maintain the classic appearance of a major hurricane on satellite imagery, with a well-formed eye, plenty of low-level spiral bands, and solid upper-level outflow to the north and south.


Figure 1. Hurricane Igor as seen by the MODIS instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite at 12:40 pm EDT Monday, September 13, 2010. Image credit: NASA.

Intensity forecast for Igor
Wind shear is low, 5 - 10 knots, and is expected to remain low for the next 3 - 4 days. Waters are warm, 28.7°C, and will warm to 29°C by Wednesday. Igor has moistened its environment enough to keep the dry air of the Saharan Air Layer (SAL) at bay. These conditions should allow Igor to remain at major hurricane status for the next 3 - 4 days. The hurricane will probably undergo one of the usual eyewall replacement cycles intense hurricanes commonly have, where the eyewall collapses and a new eyewall forms from an outer spiral band. This will weaken the hurricane by 10 - 20 mph when it occurs, and may be responsible for the 15 mph weakening Igor experienced since yesterday. Igor will probably regain its lost intensity when the cycle completes in the 12 - 36 hours. By Saturday, when Igor should be nearing Bermuda, the trough of low pressure steering Igor northwestwards should bring moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots to the storm, weakening it. Igor will also be tracking over cooler 28°C waters then.

Track forecast for Igor
The track forecast for Igor remains unchanged. Igor has made its long-anticipated turn to the west-northwest, in response to the steering influence of a broad trough of low pressure moving across the Western Atlantic. This trough will steer Igor several hundred miles to the northeast of the Lesser Antilles, and high waves should be the only impact of Igor on the islands. In the longer range, Igor appears likely to be a threat to Bermuda, and that island can expect tropical storm force winds as early as Friday. Igor does have a small chance of making landfall on the U.S. East Coast or Canada. Climatology shows that about 20% 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 5 - 10% for Bermuda and 15% for Canada. The forecast steering current pattern for the period 5 - 10 days from now from the ECMWF and GFS models shows several modest troughs of low pressure moving across the Western Atlantic. These troughs will probably be strong enough to recurve Igor out sea. However, 5 - 10 day forecasts are prone to large errors, and it is too early to be highly confident that Igor will miss hitting the U.S. or Canadian coasts.

Wave forecast for Igor
Large swells from Igor have arrived in the Northern Lesser Antilles Islands, and will spread westwards over the next few days, reaching the U.S. East Coast on Friday. By Saturday, much of the East Coast from northern Florida to Cape Cod Massachusetts can expect waves of 3 - 4 meters (10 - 13 feet), causing dangerous rip currents and significant beach erosion. These waves will continue through Sunday then gradually die down. The latest NOAA marine forecast for Cape Hatteras, North Carolina calls for 8 - 11 foot waves on Saturday.


Figure 3. Forecast wave heights for 2pm EDT Saturday September 18, 2010, as predicted by 00 UTC 9/14/2010 run of NOAA's Wavewatch III model.

Caribbean disturbance 92L
Tropical disturbance 92L over the Western Caribbean, between Jamaica and the Yucatan Peninsula, has become more organized this morning. The storm remains a threat to develop into a tropical depression, but time is running out for it to do so. There is no evidence of a surface circulation on satellite loops this morning, but the cloud pattern of 92L has become more circular, with low-level spiral bands developing on the west and north sides of the storm. 92L has a moderate but increasing area of intense thunderstorms; these are bringing heavy rains to Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, and western Cuba this morning.


Figure 3. Morning satellite image of 92L.

Forecast for 92L
Rains from 92L will spread over Belize, Northern Guatemala, and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula tonight through Wednesday, bringing peak accumulations in the 4 - 8 inch range. Lesser peak amounts of 2 - 4 inches are possible over northern Honduras. Wind shear over 92L is low, 5 - 10 knots, and is expected to remain low for the next five days. The waters beneath are hot, 29.7°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; this dry air has been interfering with development of 92L, and will continue to do so. NHC is putting the odds of 92L developing into a tropical depression by Thursday at 40%; I'll give it a 50% chance. Given the current disorganized state of 92L, it would be difficult for it to intensify quickly enough to become any stronger than a tropical storm with 50 mph winds by Wednesday afternoon, when it will move over Belize and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Once 92L crosses the Yucatan, the ridge of high pressure steering it is expected to remain in place, forcing 92L west or west-southwest to a second landfall in Mexico between Veracruz and Poza Rica early Saturday morning. The shape of Mexico's Bay of Campeche and the topography of the mountains surrounding the Bay help air spiral in a counterclockwise fashion, aiding tropical storm development, and 92L has its best chance of development once it crosses into the Bay of Campeche. With the shear there expected to be low and the waters warm, I give a high 70% chance that 92L will be a tropical depression or tropical storm in the Bay of Campeche. The GFDL model is predicting 92L could be a hurricane at landfall near Veracruz on Saturday morning; the other intensity models are much less aggressive. Given the rapid development of Hermine in a similar location last week, residents of the Mexican Gulf Coast should be wary of the possibility that 92L could intensify into at least a strong tropical storm before making landfall Friday night or Saturday morning. A Hurricane Hunter aircraft is scheduled to investigate 92L this afternoon.

Julia
Hurricane Julia is headed northwest, out to sea, and it is unlikely that this storm will trouble any land areas. The intensification of Julia into a hurricane brings our activity tally for the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season to 10 named storms, 5 hurricanes, and 3 intense hurricanes. An average season has 10 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes, so we've already had a full season's worth of activity, with about 45% of the season still to come.

Shear will be low to moderate, 5 - 20 knots, over Julia during the next two days. Shear will rise sharply to 30 knots 3 - 5 days from now, as Julia moves within 1000 miles of Igor and begins to experience strong northwesterly winds from her big brother's upper level outflow. Julia does have a window of opportunity today and Wednesday to intensify into a Category 2 hurricane before the shear rises.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The GFS and ECMWF models are suggesting the possibility of a new tropical depression forming a few hundred miles off the coast of Africa about seven days from now.

"Hurricane Haven" airing this afternoon
Tune in to my live Internet radio show, "Hurricane Haven", airing at 4pm EDT today. If you want to ask a question, the call in number is 415-983-2634, or you can email a question to broadcast@wunderground.com. Be sure to include "Hurricane Haven question" in the subject line.

Today's show will be about 30 minutes, and you can tune in at http://www.wunderground.com/wxradio/wubroadcast.h tml. The show will be recorded and stored as a podcast.

Next post
I'll have a new post on Wednesday morning.

Jeff Masters

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4020. sunlinepr
5:45 AM GMT on September 16, 2010
el outflow de Julia llega hasta Espana...
Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9814
4019. sunlinepr
5:33 AM GMT on September 16, 2010
We live in a beautiful World...

Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 9814
4018. BLee2333
3:17 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Bonedog:

ROTFLMAO!

You got my vote for a Grammy!
Member Since: January 6, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 217
4017. sarahjola
2:55 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
did apocalyps call storm a troll? i think that the first time I've ever seen someone call storm a troll in all the years I've come on this blog. i like everyone's opinion on weather on here. no matter what anyone says on here now they get called some sort of caster or troll and its very childish and getting old. it would be nice if people would post opinions on weather and not personal opinions of people.
since this topic has been brought up by other posters i have to say GO SAINTS! WHO DAT
nothing in the gulf makes me happy. nothing to come our way in the u.s. makes me even happier. storm thanks for all you do to help the public on here and everywhere else.
Member Since: September 10, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1293
4015. cmahan
2:51 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting crashingwaves:


Are you being serious or just joking around? we need to be mindful of others who read this blog.


He's an extremely persistent troll. Most users have him ignored, but he keeps trying to stir panic and general agitation in new readers. But as long as he restricts his lies to the weather, technically nothing he says is a bannable offense.

Pity, that.
Member Since: September 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 155
4014. Jax82
2:48 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
good morning
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 1261
4012. belizewunderfan
2:43 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Sorry - meant to post this link. The Belize Radar.
http://www.hydromet.gov.bz/Latest_Radar_Image.htm
Member Since: June 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 83
4011. AussieStorm
2:43 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting BobinTampa:


yes, but you are post 3,980. the blog's a bit old.

This blog is only 1 day old,,, so i am not that old.
Member Since: September 30, 2007 Posts: 9 Comments: 15935
4010. crashingwaves
2:42 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting apocalyps:
Amazing Igor jumped 200 miles west.
We dont need such jumps or Florida could be in trouble.Keep safe


Are you being serious or just joking around? we need to be mindful of others who read this blog.
Member Since: July 8, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 158
4009. belizewunderfan
2:42 PM GMT on September 15, 2010


Back

Time Label on picture is GMT. Local time is GMT-6 Hours Latest Loop


Back


Member Since: June 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 83
4005. Vero1
2:40 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
NEW BLOG
Member Since: July 21, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 2233
4004. kimoskee
2:39 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Met Service of Jamaica

NEWS RELEASE
Wednesday, September 15, 2010 5:00 a.m.

** FLASH FLOOD WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR WESTERN PARISHES ***


The Meteorological Service has extended the Flash Flood Watch for low-lying and flood-prone areas of western parishes, including St. Elizabeth, Westmoreland, Hanover and St. James, until 5:00 p.m. today.

A FLASH FLOOD WATCH means flooding is possible and citizens are advised to take precautionary measures, keep informed by listening to further News Releases from the Meteorological Service and be ready for quick action if flooding is observed or if a warning is issued.

Tropical Storm Karl is located over the western Caribbean Sea and is expected to continue influencing weather conditions over Jamaica while moving westward away from the Island.

At 4:00 a.m. the centre of Tropical Storm Karl was located near latitude 18.5 degrees North, longitude 86.7 degrees West, or about 170 kilometres east of Chetumal, Mexico.

Karl is moving toward the west-northwest near 20 km/hr. This general motion is expected to continue with some decrease in forward speed during the next couple of days.

Maximum sustained winds are near 100 km/hr, with higher gusts. Some additional strengthening is possible and Karl could approach Hurricane intensity before landfall. Weakening is expected after landfall.


While the Tropical Storm has been moving slowly westward, unstable conditions are expected to persist today with showers and thunderstorms continuing mainly over western parishes.Flash flooding is, therefore, still possible in vulnerable areas.

Fishers and other marine interests are being advised to exercise caution as strong, gusty winds are likely in areas of showers and thunderstorms over northern and southern coastal areas.

The Meteorological Service will continue to monitor the progress of Tropical Storm Karl.

nch
Member Since: August 17, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 672
4003. hydrus
2:38 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting Bonedog:
not really hydrus EMTs dont get paid well at all
They should.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21192
4002. apocalyps
2:38 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Amazing Igor jumped 200 miles west.
We dont need such jumps or Florida could be in trouble.Keep safe
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 960
3998. Floodman
2:37 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Morning folks...so two moving N, one in the Carib...we're still talking about pattern change and more westerly tracks moving forward and that is actually becoming the consensus?
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
3996. hcubed
2:36 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting poknsnok:


please dont ban "apoc" he's great!!


Now activating secondary apocolyps filtering...
Member Since: May 18, 2007 Posts: 289 Comments: 1639
3994. Bonedog
2:35 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
not really hydrus EMTs dont get paid well at all
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
3993. islander101010
2:35 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
developmental areas are changing the development of karl and gfs system shows this .
Member Since: September 11, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 4585
3991. dmh1026
2:34 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting hydrus:
Lots of people will ask for help from the blogger called Apocalypse.

Is that the same apocalypse that said Earl would hit Florida? Don't think I want to read it...
Member Since: August 16, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 143
3990. Bonedog
2:34 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
I like big eyes and I cant lie
When a cane forms a pinhole eye
I just have to sigh and wait for that EWRC

Cause I like big eyes and I cant lie....
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
3989. BobinTampa
2:33 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting AussieStorm:
From Dr Masters above blog.
Julia
Hurricane Julia is headed northwest, out to sea, and it is unlikely that this storm will trouble any land areas. The intensification of Julia into a hurricane brings our activity tally for the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season to 10 named storms, 5 hurricanes, and 3 intense hurricanes. An average season has 10 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes, so we've already had a full season's worth of activity, with about 45% of the season still to come.

Shear will be low to moderate, 5 - 20 knots, over Julia during the next two days. Shear will rise sharply to 30 knots 3 - 5 days from now, as Julia moves within 1000 miles of Igor and begins to experience strong northwesterly winds from her big brother's upper level outflow. Julia does have a window of opportunity today and Wednesday to intensify into a Category 2 hurricane before the shear rises.

Isn't Julia a Category 4 hurricane with 135mph winds? How did Dr Masters come up 2 categories short on Julia. obviously he missed something or underestimated the power of mother nature.


yes, but you are post 3,980. the blog's a bit old.
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 532
3988. SuperYooper
2:33 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting apocalyps:
Maybe my eyes are fooling me.
I just saw Florida moving east towards Igor.


It's too bad people take you seriously some times. LOL
Member Since: August 18, 2010 Posts: 14 Comments: 1602
3987. hydrus
2:33 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting Bonedog:
hey Hydrus. nothing much going on man just working the two jobs and blogging here.
Two jobs?...You must be rich!..lol
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21192
3985. Wxouttacontrol
2:32 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
GFS Loop which is forecasting gulf hurricane
Link
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 22
3980. AussieStorm
2:31 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
From Dr Masters above blog.
Julia
Hurricane Julia is headed northwest, out to sea, and it is unlikely that this storm will trouble any land areas. The intensification of Julia into a hurricane brings our activity tally for the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season to 10 named storms, 5 hurricanes, and 3 intense hurricanes. An average season has 10 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes, so we've already had a full season's worth of activity, with about 45% of the season still to come.

Shear will be low to moderate, 5 - 20 knots, over Julia during the next two days. Shear will rise sharply to 30 knots 3 - 5 days from now, as Julia moves within 1000 miles of Igor and begins to experience strong northwesterly winds from her big brother's upper level outflow. Julia does have a window of opportunity today and Wednesday to intensify into a Category 2 hurricane before the shear rises.
______________________________________________ _____________________

Isn't Julia a Category 4 hurricane with 135mph winds? How did Dr Masters come up 2 categories short on Julia. obviously he missed something or underestimated the power of mother nature.
Member Since: September 30, 2007 Posts: 9 Comments: 15935
3978. hercj
2:31 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting jeffs713:

The only people that attack Storm are those who are trolling, and those who are too single-minded to see differing opinions and a variety of viewpoints.

I for one respect Storm greatly for his knowledge and opinions, and I owe a lot of my knowledge about the tropics to him (along with Levi32, Weather456, and Drakoen).

Where is Weather456?
Member Since: September 5, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 319
3977. Bonedog
2:31 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
No problem Dawn its all good =)

BTW not to rub it in or anything but cant wait for 2014 =)
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
3975. hydrus
2:29 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting apocalyps:
In my latest analysis you can read the future track for Igor.
Igor will build a new eye more to the west.
This will bring him closer to florida.
Glad i could help you all.
Just ask and i will help you.
Keep safe Florida
Lots of people will ask for help from the blogger called Apocalypse.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21192
3972. jeffs713
2:28 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting StormW:


Bravo...someone who understands what in the world I'm talking about!

The only people that attack Storm are those who are trolling, and those who are too single-minded to see differing opinions and a variety of viewpoints.

I for one respect Storm greatly for his knowledge and opinions, and I owe a lot of my knowledge about the tropics to him (along with Levi32, Weather456, and Drakoen).
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5881
3970. crashingwaves
2:28 PM GMT on September 15, 2010
Quoting apocalyps:
igor has not turned yet.Most experts think the turn will never happen.
Maybe Igor will cross florida?
FINGERS CROSSED


I had a feeling, Igor would still be tracking wnw. The NHC still has Igor going NW then N and out to sea, in their 5 day forecast. They even mentioned in their discussions that Igor will track back & forth from WNW to NW. I think not only Bermuda but the EC should continue watch the progress of Igor. This could be another case of Earl.
Member Since: July 8, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 158

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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.