Igor spares Bermuda; Fanapi hits China; exceptionally quiet in the Pacific

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:29 PM GMT on September 20, 2010

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The core of Category 1 Hurricane Igor passed approximately 40 miles west of Bermuda at 11 pm AST last night, bringing winds just below hurricane force to the island. Winds at the Bermuda Airport peaked at 68 mph, gusting to 93 mph, at 11:22 pm AST last night. Tropical storm force winds of 39 mph began at 10 am AST on Sunday, and were still present as of 9:38 am AST (44 mph, gusting to 53 mph.) Bermuda radar shows that the core of Igor is now well past Bermuda, with only a few spiral bands to the south that will bring occasional rain squalls to the island this morning. Pressures are rising rapidly, and the storm is almost over for Bermuda. No injuries or major damage has been reported from Bermuda thus far, though Igor's waves are being blamed for two deaths in the Caribbean, one on Puerto Rico and one on St. Croix.

Igor is headed northeastward, out to sea, but will pass close enough to southeast Newfoundland to bring tropical storm force winds there on Tuesday night. Rainfall amounts of 3 - 5 inches are possible for the capital of St. Johns.


Figure 1. The eye of Hurricane Igor as seen by the International Space Station at 9:56 am EDT September 14, 2010. At the time, Igor was a Category 4 hurricane with 135 mph winds. This image ranks as one of the top-five most spectacular hurricane images ever taken from space, in my mind. To see the full-size image, visit the NASA Earth Observatory web site.

94L
A tropical wave (Invest 94L) off the coast of Africa, a few hundred miles west of the Cape Verdes Islands, has developed a well-defined surface circulation and is threat to develop into a tropical depression. The wave is under a low 5 - 10 knots of wind shear, and is over warm 28°C waters. Dry air from the Sahara is interfering with development, and downdrafts created by mid-level dry air getting ingested into the storm are creating surface arc clouds on the west side of the storm, as seen in recent visible satellite loops. 94L only has a modest amount of heavy thunderstorm activity associated with it, and the amount of thunderstorm activity will have to increase in order for this system to be considered a tropical depression. Shear is expected to be low for the next four days, and most of the major forecast models develop 94L into a tropical depression 1 - 4 days from now. NHC is giving the wave a 80% of developing into a tropical depression by Wednesday.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Invest 94L.

Julia
Tropical Storm Julia is being ripped apart by wind shear from Igor, and will likely dissipate on Tuesday.

Typhoon Fanapi hits China
Typhoon Fanapi made landfall in mainland China about 150 miles east-northeast of Hong Kong this morning as a Category 1 storm with 75 mph winds. Fanapi was the strongest typhoon so far this season, peaking at Category 3 strength with 120 mph winds shortly before weakening to a Category 2 storm with 105 mph winds when it hit northern Taiwan early Sunday morning, local time. Fanapi killed three people on the island, and brought rains of up to 1400 mm (4.6 feet) to mountainous regions in the interior. Taipei 101, the second tallest building in the world with more than 100 stories, reportedly swayed some 15 cm in Fanapi's winds.

A remarkably quiet Western Pacific typhoon season and Eastern Pacific hurricane season
It has been an exceptionally quiet Western Pacific typhoon season. Before Fanapi, the strongest typhoon this season was Typhoon Kompasu, a low-end Category 3 storm with 115 mph winds that hit South Korea in early September. According to statistics forwarded to me by NOAA meteorologist Paul Stanko on Guam, by this point in an ordinary typhoon season, we should have had 17 named storms, 11 typhoons, and 2 super supertyphoons (winds of 150+ mph.) This year, we've had just 11 named storms, 5 typhoons, and no supertyphoons. The record low for a typhoon season was 18 named storms (set in 1998), 9 typhoons (set in 1998), and no supertyphoons (set in 1974.) We have a chance of beating all of these records this year. The peak date for the Western Pacific typhoon season is August 28, so we are well past the peak.

It's a similar story out in the Eastern Pacific, where a near-record quiet hurricane season is occurring. So far there have been 6 named storms, 3 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes. Ordinarily, we should have had 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricane by this point in the season. Since reliable satellite records of Eastern Pacific hurricane activity began in 1970, the quietest season on record was 1977, when just 8 named storms occurred. The fewest hurricanes occurred in 2007 (four), and there have been two years with no intense hurricanes. The peak of Eastern Pacific hurricane season is around August 25, and on average we can expect just 3 more named storms this year. Thus, we could set records for the fewest named storms and hurricanes this year.


Figure 3. Typhoon Fanapi at landfall in China at 5:15 UTC on September 20, 2010. Image credit: NASA.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The NOGAPS, ECMWF, and GFS models have been predicting development of a strong tropical disturbance or tropical depression in the Central Caribbean 6 - 9 days from now. However, the timing, location, and track of the potential development have been inconsistent from run to run. We should merely take note of the fact that these models predict that the Caribbean will be ripe for tropical storm development late this week and early next week, and not put much faith in the specifics of these highly unreliable long-range forecasts.

I'll have a new post on Tuesday morning.

Jeff Masters

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2182. xcool


ECMWF JUST LIKE CMC
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15626
2181. IKE
Day 10....

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
958 on H216....this storm alone (if pans out) will make this dead season rise in a hurry.
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bcycsailor, we just had some freakishly springlike storms here this last weekend. I spent the day watching Igor via a webcam in Bermuda, back and forth with the local radar as the storms approached me, then went outside when I saw the outflow was about on me because I love getting blasted by that cold wind right before the storm hits. haha
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2176. IKE
Day 9...

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
that's nasty
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2173. IKE
192 hours...

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
2170. IKE
168 hour ECMWF...

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2169. xcool
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15626
Quoting SherwoodSpirit:
bcycsailor, I had a polydactyl cat with 24 toes about 12 years ago. Your kitty beat mine by one toe!

As to knowing the weather, I'm actually a lot more familiar with tornadoes than hurricanes, because I'm landlocked in Missouri. But every year, I'm absolutely glued to this blog during hurricane season. I've learned a lot here over the years, but I don't post much because I don't really have all that much to add. :)


Well, what's one toe between us. I love how people will almost spring back in trepidation when they see him...it's all good.

Me too with the tropical weather...I'm fascinated (and again, some questions went unanswered...oh well, must ask again i suppose).

i'm up north in the summer, and in the Tampa Bay area in the winter...barrier island. hmm
But I've had a life-long interest in weather of all sorts. What is setting up right now is of great interest to me.

Are you in a place of active weather right now, or lately?
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2167. xcool
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15626
2166. xcool
:0
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15626
Good night all
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 15779
rather quiet in the peak of the season...

long range CMC

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bcycsailor, I had a polydactyl cat with 24 toes about 12 years ago. Your kitty beat mine by one toe!

As to knowing the weather, I'm actually a lot more familiar with tornadoes than hurricanes, because I'm landlocked in Missouri. But every year, I'm absolutely glued to this blog during hurricane season. I've learned a lot here over the years, but I don't post much because I don't really have all that much to add. :)
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HurricaneIgor's heading had turned northward to (1.2degrees north of) NorthEast
from its previous heading of (0.9degrees east of) NorthEast
H.Igor's average speed moving between its last 2 reported positions was ~45mph(~72.4km/h)

20Sep 06amGMT - - 33.4n65.1w - - 75mph - - 955mb - - #48A
20Sep 09amGMT - - 34.2n64.4w - - 75mph - - 957mb - - #49
20Sep 12pmGMT - - 35.2n64.0w - - 75mph - - 957mb - - NHC.Adv.#49A
20Sep 03pmGMT - - 36.1n63.3w - - 75mph - - 960mb - - #50
20Sep 03pmGMT - - 37.1n62.5w - - 75mph - - 965mb - - #50A
20Sep 09pmGMT - - 38.2n61.5w - - 75mph - - 968mb - - #51
21Sep 12amGMT - - 39.0n60.5w - - 75mph - - 968mb - - #51A
21Sep 03amGMT - - 39.9n59.3w - - 75mph - - 968mb - - #52
21Sep 06amGMT - - 41.3n57.5w - - 75mph - - 968mb - - #52A

Copy&paste 33.4n65.1w, 34.2n64.4w, 35.2n64.0w, 36.1n63.3w, 37.1n62.5w-38.2n61.5w, 38.2n61.5w-39.0n60.5w, 39.0n60.5w-39.9n59.3w, 39.9n59.3w-41.3n57.5w, pwm, yyt into the GreatCircleMapper for a look at the last 12hours.
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2161. IKE
Quoting MiamiThreater:


There it is, is that it, Ike?


Yes.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
2160. xcool
Wind: 30 mph from the SE
Wind Gust: -
Pressure: 29.84


Barbados
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15626
@ Sherwood Spirit

You know cats... and weather? That's a good thing. From what I've read, so did a certain author who lived in the Keys. Maine coons rock!
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2157. IKE
Quoting MiamiThreater:


Ike, when did the latest run start developing he system, do you still remember?


Around day 4.
............................................

Day 4 ECMWF....

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
2156. IKE
72 hour ECMWF....

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2154. IKE
48 hour ECMWF...

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2152. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
last post

AOI
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Corrected to say La Nina
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Quoting StormJunkie:


The troughs have helped keep the weakness there though. Well, those...And the fact that the Azores high seemed to be shifted E this year.


As is typical in a stronger La Nina. Most of the storms have made it further west than forecast because A. of a stronger ridge and B. because the troughs were weaker than forecast.

The troughs are there yes, but, the weakness is what stopped the cyclones and turned them north. Each in itself keeping the weakness open for the other.
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2149. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
later all be back after sunrise
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Quoting CyclonicVoyage:


The weakness in the CATL is the reason they have all recurved, not the troughs.


Among a few other things, IMO.

1. Organizing further east
2. Stronger storms move more poleward

If you look back at the discussions for the likes of Earl and IGOR, the troughs don't come into play until the end. The weakness is what allowed them to turn North, the troughs did the kicking.
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2147. xcool
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15626
Quoting CyclonicVoyage:


The weakness in the CATL is the reason they have all recurved, not the troughs.


The troughs have helped keep the weakness there though. Well, those...And the fact that the Azores high seemed to be shifted E this year.
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 15779
Quoting SherwoodSpirit:
bcycsailor... TOES!
Love your polydactyl kitty. :)


Haha...he's got 25 of them..good eye :)
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Quoting StormJunkie:


But aren't the stronger than average troughs the reason that all the CV storms have curved well before the conus?


The weakness in the CATL is the reason they have all recurved, not the troughs.
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2142. xcool
95L COME SOON...
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15626
Quoting IKE:
Here's the link to the NOGAPS...Link


We're all gonna die!

j/k
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bcycsailor... TOES!
Love your polydactyl kitty. :)
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2139. xcool
DISORGANIZED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS IN THE VICINITY OF THE
WINDWARD ISLANDS ARE ASSOCIATED WITH A TROPICAL WAVE. ENVIRONMENTAL
CONDITIONS APPEAR CONDUCIVE FOR SOME SLOW DEVELOPMENT DURING THE
NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS AS IT MOVES WESTWARD AT 10 TO 15 MPH. THERE IS
A LOW CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL
CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

i was rigth ding ding haha
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15626
2138. IKE
00Z ECMWF @ 24 hours...

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
200 AM EDT TUE SEP 21 2010

FOR THE NORTH ATLANTIC...CARIBBEAN SEA AND THE GULF OF MEXICO...

THE NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER IS ISSUING ADVISORIES ON HURRICANE
IGOR...LOCATED ABOUT 375 MILES SOUTH-SOUTHWEST OF CAPE RACE
NEWFOUNDLAND...AND ON NEWLY FORMED TROPICAL DEPRESSION
FOURTEEN...LOCATED ABOUT 530 MILES WEST OF THE CAPE VERDE ISLANDS.

DISORGANIZED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS IN THE VICINITY OF THE
WINDWARD ISLANDS ARE ASSOCIATED WITH A TROPICAL WAVE. ENVIRONMENTAL
CONDITIONS APPEAR CONDUCIVE FOR SOME SLOW DEVELOPMENT DURING THE
NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS AS IT MOVES WESTWARD AT 10 TO 15 MPH. THERE IS
A LOW CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL
CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

ELSEWHERE...TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE
NEXT 48 HOURS.

$$
FORECASTER ROBERTS/BEVEN

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2136. xcool


Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15626
I look for a couple in the Western Atlantic as the Cape Verde season comes to a close and these waves are able to progress through the western MDR.
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Quoting CyclonicVoyage:


I use the models as a tool, not a crutch. Late October, then I would believe regular troughs digging into the SE, not late September. A rogue trough maybe but, surely not a season capper.


But aren't the stronger than average troughs the reason that all the CV storms have curved well before the conus?
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 15779
Good evening Night Shift.

I don't post much but lurk whenever I have the time, so I know about the..well, you know.

My question is: What were the dynamics which caused Charley to take that sudden turn in 2004?

okay, two questions: Is it possible for steering patterns to be measured two weeks from now?

apologies if these queries were answered earlier. some of the repartee is laugh out loud. keep up the good spirits! Looking forward to any answer to my questions. TIA
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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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