High wind shear disrupts Emily as it approaches Hispaniola

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 5:06 PM GMT on August 03, 2011

Share this Blog
26
+

In defiance to its forecast, Tropical Storm Emily continues to move due west this morning, and we wonder just how far west it will get before turning toward Hispaniola. Recent Hurricane Hunter missions have shown that Emily is still very poorly organized, and although the center of circulation is plainly obvious on satellite imagery, it's only because it is so displaced from the thunderstorm activity. Wind shear around the storm is just high enough, around 20 knots out of the west, to push the upper levels of circulation and thunderstorm activity to the east, exposing the surface low. In order for tropical cyclones to intensify (or, continue to exist at all), they need to be vertically stacked and standing straight up in the atmosphere. Right now, Emily is tilting to the east. This is bad news for the organization of the storm, and something that Emily will have to work hard at recovering from. In addition to the wind shear, dry air continues to wrap around the north and west of the storm. This isn't as critical as unfavorable wind shear, but it's not helping to create new thunderstorm activity. The strongest winds of 50 mph were found to the north and east of the center this morning, and Emily is not expected to intensify before making landfall in Hispaniola, which is forecast for tonight. The HWRF is forecasting the strongest precipitation to fall on the northeast side of the storm as is passes over Hispaniola. This is relatively good news for Haiti, but the country could still receive up to 5 inches of rain, and since the models have been trending the track west over the past couple of runs, it's something to watch closely. No matter the scenario, Emily is expected to produce heavy rains, flash flooding, and mudslides in Haiti and the Dominican Republic, which are all to common on the mountainous island.


Figure 1. Forecast precipitation accumulation from the HWRF high resolution model's 6Z (2am EDT) run. The color contour scale is in inches. The coastlines are a thin, red line. The Dominican Republic is expected to get the most rain out of Emily. You can view the HWRF model runs on Wundermap.

Forecast for Tropical Storm Emily
The future of Emily remains uncertain, and even the National Hurricane Center is using the "if" word when forecasting Emily's track after crossing Hispaniola. "If" it makes it north of Hispaniola. Over the past couple of runs, the models have been trending their forecast tracks back to the west, most likely because Emily has remained on a westward track longer than expected. This is expected—the longer Emily remains shallow and unorganized, the longer it will track west. It will need to build up taller in the atmosphere to be influenced by the steering winds that can push it north. Given its westward track, today's models are likely closer to reality than what we've seen in the past couple of days. This morning, the CMC, UKMET, and HWRF models send Emily on a northwest track to Florida. This is a change from the past couple of days for the HWRF, but the CMC and UKMET have consistently been the western boundary of model consensus. THE GFDL has also taken a huge swing to the west, and now suggests it will come very close to a southeast Florida landfall. The ECMWF and GFS continue to forecast that Emily will take a harder turn north through the Bahamas, not reaching the Florida coast.


Figure 2. Satellite image of Tropical Storm Emily at 11:15am EDT. The surface circulation is visible to the west of the strongest thunderstorm activity.

Consensus of the models falls between the HWRF/GFDL solution and the ECMWF/GFS solution, and the National Hurricane Center continues to use the consensus for the official track forecast, which calls for Emily to take a turn to the northwest and make landfall in Hispaniola this afternoon, after which continuing northwest until Saturday morning when it's between the island of Grand Bahama and West Palm Beach, Florida. At this point, they expect the storm to jog north and then northeast.

Emily's intensity forecast continues highly dependent on the track it takes. Assuming it can survive the wrath of Hispaniola, Emily will enter slightly more favorable environmental conditions to the north of the islands. This is what the Hurricane Center is forecasting, although they remain cautious. There is a very good chance that, if Emily does turn northwest today, it will not be able to reorganize after crossing Hispaniola. If it does maintain organization, Emily could reach hurricane strength as it moves northeast out to the open Atlantic. The other scenario at this point is that the storm keeps moving west, which will be detrimental to its orgnization. The models that track Emily into the far eastern Gulf of Mexico don't suggest any reintensification—the CMC fizzles the system below tropical storm strength quickly, probably because of the long track over Cuba it would have to take. In any case, Emily remains a threat most certainly to Hispaniola, and potentially to Florida.

I'm planning a quick update later this afternoon/evening for an update on new model runs, and potential Hispaniola landfall.

Angela

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 1470 - 1420

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41Blog Index

Umm, so Emily took a NE jog?
Center fix by recon shows a NE jog/Basically relocation...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Is the NHC track once emily starts moving north logical? pretty big dramatic lift NW, gives the impression of a very strong trough lifting emily up, hate to sound like a wishcaster, rather a nhc skeptic.

sorry to post again, but i got cut off with the new page...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting presslord:


Thanks! That's a pretty hard-to-starboard turn...


That's what I saw too. Far too hard of a turn. Guess we'll need to look for the new predicted turn point and see how far beyond it Emily passes. Kinda like that sub scene from "Hunt for Red October" where the captain delays making the turn lol
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Looks like instead of going N, Emily is going to pack it in altogether......her appearance on satellite is
Quoting PalmBeachWeatherBoy:
Is the NHC track once emily starts moving north logical? pretty big dramatic lift NW, gives the impression of a very strong trough lifting emily up, hate to sound like a wishcaster, rather a nhc skeptic.


Nothing to lift up.......the satellite shots look worse and worse.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1466. emguy
Quoting ackee:
which model has been on track with EMily track so far ?

A CMC
B GFS
C UKMET
D ECMWF
E NAM


F.) BAMS
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1464. emcf30
Quoting CybrTeddy:


You had to do it.. ;)

I'm confussed
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1462. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Japan Meteorological Agency
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #6
TROPICAL DEPRESSION 12
6:00 AM JST August 4 2011
==========================================

SUBJECT: Tropical Depression In Sea East Of Japan

At 21:00 PM UTC, Tropical Depression (1008 hPa) located at 31.3N 141.7E has 10 minute sustained winds of 30 knots with gusts of 45 knots. The depression is reported as moving west northwest at 17 knots

Dvorak Intensity:

Forecast and Intensity
========================
24 HRS: 33.5N 138.9E - 35 knots (CAT 1/Tropical Storm)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
18Hrs HWRF
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting IceCoast:


Thanks! That's a pretty hard-to-starboard turn...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1459. wpb
noaa jet data in the 18xz or 00z models
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1458. ackee
which model has been on track with EMily track so far ?

A CMC
B GFS
C UKMET
D ECMWF
E NAM
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting emcf30:



You had to do it.. ;)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


We'll be seeing these as we head later into the month and next month. Lets just hope that none come and impact the United States, although the signs do not look good.

Question: What time does the 18Z HWRF come out?


Watch the 18Z as it progresses Link
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 10836
Wow...This is a very slow moving system.

Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 112 Comments: 31319
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1453. emcf30
Quoting presslord:
Would one of you fine people be so kind as to post the most recent NHC track graphic? Many thanks!!

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Trying not to fall asleep. Getting late here.

FWIW, the 18z GFS has a very vigorous associated with it's ghost storm. Seems to be tapping the ITCZ a bit.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1450. jonelu
Quoting MississippiWx:
Anyone else see the wicked looking face Emily has in this pic?

OH YA...thats crazy! Maybe we will see jesus in the next image ;-)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Is the NHC track once emily starts moving north logical? pretty big dramatic lift NW, gives the impression of a very strong trough lifting emily up, hate to sound like a wishcaster, rather a nhc skeptic.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting FLWeatherFreak91:
I don't see a turn at all.

I only say that based on the center passes on google earth. It looks like it may have started a slight turn.. but we will see in a few hours...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
how do they come to the conclusion to ASSUME?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1446. robj144
Quoting MississippiWx:
Anyone else see the wicked looking face Emily has in this pic?



Better hope that's not Jesus. People go crazy for Jesus on a grilled cheese, they'd be jumping out of windows if Jesus was embedded in the cloud tops. :)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
..THE OFFICIAL FORECAST STILL
ASSUMES THAT THE WESTERN ATLANTIC TROUGH WILL DEEPEN SUFFICIENTLY
TO TURN THE CYCLONE NORTHWESTWARD AND NORTHWARD. HOWEVER...IF THE
NORTHWARD TURN DOES NOT BEGIN SOON...THE THREAT TO THE SOUTHEASTERN
UNITED STATES WILL INCREASE
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Would one of you fine people be so kind as to post the most recent NHC track graphic? Many thanks!!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MississippiWx:
Anyone else see the wicked looking face Emily has in this pic?

I see Abraham Lincoln.
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3619
Quoting MississippiWx:
Anyone else see the wicked looking face Emily has in this pic?



I see it!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
.THE OFFICIAL FORECAST STILL
ASSUMES THAT THE WESTERN ATLANTIC TROUGH WILL DEEPEN SUFFICIENTLY
TO TURN THE CYCLONE NORTHWESTWARD AND NORTHWARD.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1439. Levi32
Convection on the increase...can you say turn baby turn? North of west movement may have begun.

RGB loop
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26543
Quoting MississippiWx:
Anyone else see the wicked looking face Emily has in this pic?



No...Draw it in Paint or something.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 112 Comments: 31319
I don't see a turn at all.
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3619
Anyone else see the wicked looking face Emily has in this pic?

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 112 Comments: 31319
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


We'll be seeing these as we head later into the month and next month. Lets just hope that none come and impact the United States, although the signs do not look good.

Question: What time does the 18Z HWRF come out?


6:30 - 7:30 EST

Link
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Starts heading W/WSW by 168.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Dropsonde got 1003mb again.

000
UZNT13 KNHC 032228
XXAA 53228 99169 70705 04460 99003 27407 21015 00023 27406 21016
92713 24012 21011 85455 22443 19504 88999 77999
31313 09608 82201
61616 AF306 0805A EMILY OB 18
62626 EYE SPL 1694N07049W 2202 MBL WND 21015 AEV 20802 DLM WND 21
011 002843 WL150 21017 084 REL 1693N07049W 220109 SPG 1694N07049W
220251 =
XXBB 53228 99169 70705 04460 00003 27407 11935 24205 22850 22443
33843 21864
21212 00003 21015 11993 21019 22972 21013 33933 20011 44900 21511
55896 19510 66857 18505 77843 20503
31313 09608 82201
61616 AF306 0805A EMILY OB 18
62626 EYE SPL 1694N07049W 2202 MBL WND 21015 AEV 20802 DLM WND 21
011 002843 WL150 21017 084 REL 1693N07049W 220109 SPG 1694N07049W
220251 =
;
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21091
If the solutions doesn't pan out, The Belize/Mexican border will get Emily, just my opinion.
Member Since: April 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 7631
1430. JGreco
Quoting charlottefl:
I can see the possibility of this making contact with land somewhere in SE FL if it survives landfall in Cuba, and if it doesn't strengthen too much. A lot of if's tho.. That's about as far West as I see it going though unless the ridge over the central gulf retrogrades some.


Agreed. The furthest East I can see this thing getting is around the West coast of Florida around Ft. Myers before veering sharply East. At least according to current maps.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


The news stations are mentioning it repeatedly...


Not much talk around town...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MississippiWx:
150hours:

Just chillin' there lol.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21091
1427. emcf30
Buy looking at the last three center fixes from the HH it is definitely WNW of the original center location. The last lowest pressure fix is now N of the previous fix. I believe it could be possible the center has relocated to the North a bit. I am not totally buying the WNW movement yet. It could be just a center relocation. Time will tell.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting atmoaggie:
Hmm, in this case, mountains could help "stack the system"...I think.


Was thinkin that may be possible, but with this storm and it's organization so far, who knows...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MississippiWx:

looks like the turn has started?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Edit
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
150hours:

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
The EPac is just laughing at the Atlantic. All (currently) 5 total storms are hurricanes. And Eugene seems to defy forecasts.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting obxnagshead:
Not much talk of the storm yet on the NC coast. We don't want our tourists to freak out for no reason and leave!


The news stations are mentioning it repeatedly...
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 112 Comments: 31319
1420. guygee
Quoting MississippiWx:


That's one hell of a trof in the Central Atlantic and off the Eastern Seaboard.
Agreed, but no longer digging or as meridional as a couple of days ago.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 1470 - 1420

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41Blog Index

Top of Page

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.

Local Weather

Mostly Cloudy
75 °F
Mostly Cloudy