Indonesian volcano may cut President's visit short

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:01 PM GMT on November 09, 2010

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President Obama is in Jakarta, Indonesia, but that nation's most active volcano--Mount Merapi on Java--is spewing enough ash to potentially cut the President's visit short. Merapi (literally "Mountain of Fire" in Javanese) has been erupting since late October, and the mountain's pyroclastic flows and ash have been blamed for the deaths of over 150 Indonesians since the eruption began. The capital city of Jakarta lies about 250 miles west-northwest of Merapi, and received ash from the volcano over the weekend. At Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta Airport, airlines canceled 36 flights on Saturday, and an additional 50 flights on Sunday. The airport handles about 900 flights per day. The Indonesian Disaster Management Office reported that volcanic ash from Merapi fell in Jakarta and some nearby areas such as Bogor and Puncak on Saturday night, but only in very light falls. No flights were canceled yesterday, as the ash cloud remained about 50 miles to the south of the city.


Figure 1. Signs of the eruption at Mount Merapi managed to puncture the persistent cloud cover over Java on November 5, 2010. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA's Terra satellite captured this natural-color image the same day. The volcano's plume formed a V shape, fanning out to the west from the summit and casting shadows on the surrounding clouds below. According to the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center in Darwin, Australia, the ash plume rose to at least 55,000 feet (16 kilometers) in altitude and stretched 220 miles (350 km) to the west and southwest, as of 12:13 a.m. local time on November 6 (17:13 UTC, Nov 5). Image credit: NASA.

The winds today are blowing from east to west over the Merapi volcano, and are expected to continue this direction for the remainder of the day. According to the latest Volcanic ash advisory from the Darwin, Australia Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (Figure 2), the ash from Merapi extends about 140 miles to the west of the volcano, and is expected to remain just south of Jakarta today. However, the ash cloud is sufficiently close to the city that just a small change in wind direction could bring ash to Jakarta, which might shut down the airport. A run I performed using NOAA's HYSPLIT trajectory model (Figure 2, right side) shows the potential for ash to reach Jakarta if Merapi erupts continuously for 48 hours, beginning at 1am EST this morning. So, the President will have to keep a careful eye on Merapi today in case the ash cloud approaches Jakarta.


Figure 2. Latest volcanic ash advisory from the Darwin, Australia Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (left) predicts that ash from Merapi will stay just south of Jakarta today. NOAA's HYSPLIT trajectory model was run assuming a continuous 48-hour eruption of the volcano began at 1am EST this morning. That model predicts that the ash could from Merapi could come very close to Jakarta by 1am EST on Thursday.

Impact of Merapi on the climate
The amount of sulfur dioxide and ash that Merapi has thrown into the atmosphere thus far has been relatively minor as volcanic eruptions go, and I don't expect Merapi's eruption will cause a noticeable influence on the climate. As I discuss on our Volcanoes and climate web page, major volcanic eruptions in the tropics have, in the past, caused substantial cooling of Earth's climate by injecting large amounts of sulfur dioxide into the stratosphere. The most notable such eruption in recent history was in 1815 by the Indonesian volcano Tambora. The sulfur pumped by this eruption into the stratosphere dimmed sunlight so extensively that global temperatures fell by about 2°F (1°C) for 1 - 2 years afterward. This triggered the famed Year Without a Summer in 1816. Killing frosts and snow storms in May and June 1816 in Eastern Canada and New England caused widespread crop failures, and lake and river ice were observed as far south as Pennsylvania in July and August. Birger Lühr, a volcano researcher at the GFZ in Potsdam, Germany, commented in Der Spiegel magazine that Merapi has a magma reservoir triple the size of Tambora's. Lühr did not expect that the current eruption of Merapi would cause a massive climate-cooling event, but he did caution that the current cone of the volcano lies on top of the ruins of a more ancient crater, evidence that Merapi has had a cataclysmic eruption in the past.

Invest 93L in the Caribbean not currently a threat
An area of disturbed weather (Invest 93L) has developed in the central Caribbean, a few hundred miles south of the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. The heavy thunderstorm activity associated with 93L is rather limited, due in part to some dry air to the north. Wind shear is a low 5 - 10 knots and SSTs are very warm, 29°C, so we will have to watch this area for signs of development. None of the reliable global forecast models for predicting tropical cyclone formation (GFS, NOGAPS, ECMWF, and UKMET) are developing 93L into a tropical depression over the coming week, and NHC is giving 93L a 10% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Thursday.


Figure 3. Morning satellite image of Invest 93L.

I'll have a new post Wednesday morning.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Grothar:


Knock, knock! Glad you liked it, door!


Who is there? lol
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Quoting Grothar:


In German, though. My English is not that good. LOL It loses a lot in translation.



Done.

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Quoting doorman79:


Grothar,

Thats my song! lol Trying to keep with the theme of the blog tonight!

Evening All!



Knock, knock! Glad you liked it, door!
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27210
Quoting BahaHurican:
Can we have "Mull of Kintyre"? I know it's completely unrelated to the blog, but then what's not? lol

Wow. I thought I was the only one that liked that song.
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Quoting PSLFLCaneVet:



What gives here? Grill and I have a music blog. Evening folks. 99 Red Balloons, Grothar?


In German, though. My English is not that good. LOL It loses a lot in translation.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27210
Erik Klemetti, from whose blog we scarfed pictures during the Icelandic eruption of E-with-the-unpronounceable-name, has moved his blog to here Link.
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What gives here? Grill and I have a music blog. Evening folks. 99 Red Balloons, Grothar?
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


That will do it, KEEPER!
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27210
336. wial
Quoting jurakantaino:
The far right,extremists are throwing to the drain a nice weather blog.. Is ridiculous, are you "right wingers" aware that many people here come from different countries and we couldn't care less about your "little political or religious problems". Go to a "party and drink some tea", relax!I wonder if the administration can do something about it? I think this is going to far...


Don't worry, a lot of good Americans know very well the current manifestation of the recurring hate gale that is the American right wing has turned into something very pathetically similar to the South African apartheid movement. They want services for themselves, and then manipulate the system so they don't have to share them with people they consider different from themselves. But this country was founded by secularist liberals with very good hearts, and that tradition won't die quickly. A lot of us are still human, and we understand what makes us human is the ability to extend sympathy.

I'm very sorry about the mean-spirited small-minded replies you've received from some here though. It's deeply shameful for the US that we have failed to bring a lot of people along towards full understanding of our rights and responsibilities. It's an endless age-old struggle as I'm sure you know. Heck, even in the Bible, the Book of Proverbs was written to reform such characters, way back in the Old Testament, and they still haven't learned, despite all their thumping of said book.
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Quoting Grothar:
Come on now, everyone calm down.



Grothar,

Thats my song! lol Trying to keep with the theme of the blog tonight!

Evening All!

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Quoting Bordonaro:


Danke, Bord, viele Danke! I haven't heard that in years. Brings back some good memories.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27210
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting KerryInNOLA:
I saw Cat Stevens live in New Orleans in a 1971 concert at a place called The Warehouse.There was so much pot in the air it created a thick fog. The on duty NOPD didn't care. Some were smoking it too. Cat put on quite a show.


Wow, you were old enough to go out in 1971??
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27210
Quoting Jeff9641:


OBAMA and his Socialism may just do it if he's in office another 4 years.
he will be fired in 2012 if MY vote counts.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Can we have "Mull of Kintyre"? I know it's completely unrelated to the blog, but then what's not? lol
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22736
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
---
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11557
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
evening is it safe to come in


Not really.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32870
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
evening is it safe to come in


Only if you have a good song to embed!!!!!!
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27210
Nah, keeper... everybody's just eating dinner right now... soon as they're done they'll be back at it hammers and tongs.... lol

Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22736
evening is it safe to come in
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Quoting atmoaggie:
As to the overall significance...

Wow, atmo... this song is one of my first hurricane related memories... back in '77 or '78 a storm passed near here. All I remember of that storm is this song on the radio, and the wind shrieking in the background... and the darkness of the house... Every time I hear this song since then, it gives me the creeps.... lol ... some fine irony on the part of the DJ, though.... lol
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22736
So I see we have something to watch in the carribean.So who knows.We may indeed finish the list,and we certainly can't discount december.Let's see if we finish the list.If we do that would put us at 21,12,24?
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Indonesian Volcano blowing its top:
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
As to the overall significance...

Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12463
Grothar, I'll match Louie with this:

Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11557
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The United States Marine Corps traces its institutional roots to the Continental Marines of the American Revolutionary War, formed by Captain Samuel Nicholas at Tun Tavern in Philadelphia, by a resolution of the Second Continental Congress on 10 November 1775, to raise 2 battalions of Marines. That date is regarded and celebrated as the date of the Marine Corps' "birthday". The Marines' most famous action of this period occurred during the First Barbary War (1801–1805) against the Barbary pirates,[30] when William Eaton and First Lieutenant Presley O'Bannon led eight Marines and 500 mercenaries in an effort to capture Tripoli. Though they only reached Derna, the action at Tripoli has been immortalized in the Marines' hymn and the Mameluke Sword carried by Marine officers.[31]

Nickname trivia: Devil Dogs, earned at the battle of belleau wood WW I when captured german soldiers fought like "teufel hunden" of german folk lore. Leather-necks, for the stiff leather collars early marines to protect from sword blows. Jar-head, for the distinctive, woman-attracting , regulation hair-cuts worn by Marines.:^)
Member Since: August 29, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5236
Quoting TORMENTOSO83:
what's new with the invest 93L?


DISORGANIZED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS OVER PORTIONS OF THE NORTHERN
LEEWARD ISLANDS...PUERTO RICO...AND ADJACENT WATERS ARE ASSOCIATED
WITH A WEAK AREA OF LOW PRESSURE AND A SURFACE TROUGH.
ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS ARE ONLY MARGINALLY FAVORABLE...AND
DEVELOPMENT...IF ANY...OF THIS DISTURBANCE SHOULD BE SLOW TO OCCUR.
THERE IS A LOW CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A
TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS AS IT MOVES SLOWLY
NORTHWARD. REGARDLESS OF DEVELOPMENT...LOCALLY HEAVY RAINFALL IS
EXPECTED TO CONTINUE OVER PORTIONS OF THE NORTHERN LEEWARD ISLANDS
AND PUERTO RICO DURING THE NEXT DAY OR TWO.

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

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Don't care about politics as long as certain things I follow with great interest (NASA, NOAA, ect) aren't gutted significantly it doesn't really matter to me.

Anyways, back to the tropics.

Found Tomas!
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Quoting brohavwx:
BTW, I found this a couple days ago - Radar from Martinique as Tomas passed Barbados ...



nice post
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what's new with the invest 93L?
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BTW, I found this a couple days ago - Radar from Martinique as Tomas passed Barbados ...



Member Since: June 3, 2002 Posts: 0 Comments: 64
306. Relix
To be honest Admins are powerless here in WU. Yes, this may net me a ban, but its just a matter of circumventing the IP block (if any) and making another account. Tada. And no, I don't have any other if you are wondering ;-). Now let's focus on weather and keep God and Politics out of it (though there is not much weather to discuss haha)
Member Since: August 3, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2741
Sorry, thought it didn't go through
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Hey guess what, guys?

THIS BLOG = WEATHER

THIS BLOG + RELIGIOUS AND OFF-TOPIC STUFF = XXXX

Admin is going to start removing posts off-topic, and banning people.

So, I'd suggest we get back to weather, please? :)


True, true ... maybe its just boredom as nothing much is happening weather-wise, and 'you-know-who' finds work for idle hands.

So let us therefore brace ourselves ... (again) I say anyone watching the Tropical Atlantic ... looking like its 'bubbling' again, or is it just ITCZ?
Member Since: June 3, 2002 Posts: 0 Comments: 64
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Hey guess what, guys?

THIS BLOG = WEATHER

THIS BLOG + RELIGIOUS AND OFF-TOPIC STUFF = XXXX

Admin is going to start removing posts off-topic, and banning people.

So, I'd suggest we get back to weather, please? :)


True, true ... maybe its just boredom as nothing much is happening weather-wise, and 'you-know-who' finds work for idle hands.

So let us therefore brace ourselves ... (again) I say anyone watching the Tropical Atlantic ... looking like its 'bubbling' again, or is it just ITCZ?
Member Since: June 3, 2002 Posts: 0 Comments: 64
299. Grothar
11:18 PM GMT on November 09, 2010
Come on now, everyone calm down.

Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27210
297. jurakantaino
11:17 PM GMT on November 09, 2010
Quoting Jeff9641:


OBAMA and his Socialism may just do it if he's in office another 4 years.
The far right,extremists are throwing to the drain a nice weather blog.. Is ridiculous, are you "right wingers" aware that many people here come from different countries and we couldn't care less about your "little political or religious problems". Go to a "party and drink some tea", relax!I wonder if the administration can do something about it? I think this is going to far...
Member Since: July 31, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 730

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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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