Four invests in the Atlantic; fair weather in Arctic to drive rapid sea ice loss

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:38 PM GMT on August 12, 2011

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It's a busy day in the tropical Atlantic, with the National Hurricane Center tracking four areas of interest (Invests.) None of these systems is a danger to any land areas over the next three days. The disturbance of most concern is the one farthest from land, a tropical wave that emerged from the coast of Africa two days ago. This wave, (Invest 93L), is located about 500 miles southwest of the Cape Verde Islands, and is moving westward at 15 - 20 mph. Recent visible satellite loops show that 93L has lost some of its heavy thunderstorms since yesterday, and the system is poorly organized, though there is a good deal of spin to the system. There is dry air to its north that is interfering with development. The SHIPS model and University of Wisconsin CIMSS wind shear analysis are showing high wind shear in excess 20 knots affecting 93L, which has undoubtedly contributed to the storm's loss of organization. Sea surface temperatures are 27.5°C, which is one degree above the 26.5°C threshold usually needed to support a tropical storm.


Figure 1. Morning satellite photo of the four Invests in the Atlantic today.

Forecast for 93L
High wind shear above 20 knots is predicted along 93L's path through Saturday afternoon, followed by a drop to the moderate range, 10 - 20 knots, for the succeeding four days. This should allow the storm to organize over the weekend. The latest 00Z and 06Z model runs of the four best models for predicting tropical storm formation (GFS, ECMWF, NOGAPS, and UKMET), have only one model, the GFS, that is indicating significant development of 93L. This model brings 93L near the northern Lesser Antilles Islands by Wednesday. NHC gave 93L a 40% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Sunday morning in their 8am outlook. Given 93L's recent struggles, I'd put these odds at 30%.

92L
An African wave midway between the northern Lesser Antilles Islands and the coast of Africa, near 18°N 45°W, is moving west-northwest at 20 mph. This system, (Invest 92L), is being given a 40% chance of development by NHC. Recent visible satellite loops show a modest amount of heavy thunderstorm activity, but no signs of a surface circulation. A Windsat pass from 8:04 am EDT this morning also showed no surface circulation, and noted top winds of around 35 mph. Water vapor satellite loops show that a large area of dry air surrounds 92L, and this dry air is causing problems for the storm. The SHIPS model and University of Wisconsin CIMSS wind shear analysis are showing moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots affecting 92L. Sea surface temperatures are 27 - 27.5°C, which is a degree above the 26.5°C threshold usually needed to support a tropical storm.

Forecast for 92L
Moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots is predicted along 92L's path over the coming five days, which should allow the storm to organize if it can handle the dry air surrounding it. The latest 00Z and 06Z model runs of the four best models for predicting tropical storm formation (GFS, ECMWF, NOGAPS, and UKMET) show weak development or no development of 92L, and NHC gave 92L a 40% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Sunday morning in their 8am outlook. A steady west-northwest motion for 92L is predicted by all of the models, which should make the storm miss the Lesser Antilles by a comfortable margin. However, Bermuda may be at risk from 92L next week.

94L
A broad low pressure system about 700 miles northeast of the northern Lesser Antilles Islands has developed a small amount of heavy thunderstorm activity, and may be a threat to become a tropical depression early next week. This system, (Invest 94L), is currently headed west-southwest at 10 mph, but is expected to turn northwest later today. Recent visible satellite loops show some spin to the cloud pattern at middle levels of the atmosphere, but no signs of a surface circulation. This system is also battling dry air, which is keeping the its heavy thunderstorms relatively meager. The SHIPS model is showing moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots affecting 94L. Sea surface temperatures are 28°C.

Forecast for 94L
Moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots is predicted along 94L's path over the coming five days, which should allow slow development, if it can handle the dry air surrounding it. None of our reliable models for predicting tropical storm formation (GFS, ECMWF, NOGAPS, and UKMET) show no development of 94L, and NHC gave 94L just a 20% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Sunday morning in their 8am outlook. Bermuda is the only land area that needs to be concerned with 94L.

95L
The final invest out there is an area of disturbed weather along on old frontal boundary several hundred miles off the coast of North Carolina. This sytem, Invest 95L, is headed northeastwards out to sea, and is not a threat to any land areas.



Figure 2. Arctic sea ice extent on August 11, 2011, was the 2nd lowest on record for the date. The Northeast Passage and Northwest Passage (southern route) were both ice-free. Image credit: UIUC Cryosphere Today.

Arctic sea ice poised to undergo record decline in mid-August
A strong high pressure system with a central pressure of 1035 mb has developed over the Arctic north of Alaska, and will bring clear skies and warm southerly winds to northeast Siberia and the Arctic during the coming week, accelerating Arctic sea ice loss. Widespread areas of northeastern Siberia are expected to see air temperatures 4 - 12°C (7 - 22°F) above average during the coming week, and the clockwise flow of air around the high pressure system centered north of Alaska will pump this warm air into the Arctic. Arctic sea ice extent, currently slightly higher than the record low values set in 2007, should fall to to its lowest extent for the date by the third week of August as the clear skies and warm southerly winds melt ice and push it away from the coast of Siberia. This weather pattern, known as the Arctic Dipole, was also responsible for the record sea ice loss in 2007, but was stronger that year. The weather conditions that led to the 2007 record were quite extreme--one 2008 study led by Jennifer Kay of the National Center for Atmospheric Research showed that 2007's combination of high pressure and sunny skies in the Arctic occur, on average, only once every 10 - 20 years. The 2011 summer weather pattern in the Arctic has not been nearly as extreme as in 2007, but the total sea ice volume has declined significantly since 2007, leading to much loss of old, thick, multi-year ice, making it easier to set a new low extent record with less extreme weather conditions. The GFS model is predicting that the Arctic Dipole will weaken by 8 - 15 days from now, with cloudier weather and weaker high pressure over the Arctic. This should slow down the rate of Arctic sea ice loss to very near the record low values observed in 2007. It remains to be seen if 2011 Arctic sea ice extent will surpass the all-time low set in September 2007; it will be close, and will depend on the weather conditions of late August and early September, which are not predictable at this time. It is already possible to sail completely around the North Pole in ice-free waters through the Northeast Passage and Northwest Passage, according to sea ice maps maintained by the UIUC Cryosphere Today website. This marks the fourth consecutive year--and the fourth time in recorded history--both of these Arctic shipping routes have melted free. Mariners have been attempting to sail these passages since 1497. This year, the Northeast Passage along the north coast of Russia melted free several weeks earlier than its previous record early opening.

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Jeff Masters

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Quoting hurricanehanna:


Good job Flood...we can always count on you :)


It's amazing how hard it is for me to keep a straight face right now...just sayin'
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Whoops...




Should be up soon.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
TD6 only has a day or so in 26C+ waters. It will most likely not get any stronger than a 50-60mph TS.

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502. P451

Or.... why either system since being attached to a frontal boundary is considered a flag against declaring a system?

Opening statement in the definition of a tropical cyclone, non-frontal.
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okay, now I follow....Navy site shows TD6 (formerly 95l)
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well we now now we got TD 6



so the next 3 on the list right now is 92 93 and 94L



i say 92L has the best ch of becomeing TD 7 overe the weekend and then TD 8 will come out of 93L not so sure about 94L will need too wait on see on this one


so overe the next few days we could see the F the G H and may be I storm
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
TD6:

AL, 06, 2011081218, , BEST, 0, 357N, 647W, 30, 1011, TD
Aww man I was planning on singing here comes Franklin, now there goes Franklin, wave bye. That will bring us up to 6 named storms, and my bets are this never becomes a hurricane.
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From running best track:

AL, 06, 2011081218, , BEST, 0, 357N, 647W, 30, 1011, TD, 34, NEQ, 0, 0, 0, 0, 1014, 175, 30, 40, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, M,
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
The only thing stopping this from being declared is the National Hurricane Center. Even if it isn't fully detached from the frontal boundary, neither was Cindy or Bret IIRC.



92L is looking really good right now. This will probably become a TD/TS over the weekend, but will likely curve out to sea, without affecting anybody directly.



94L deserves a yellow circle at this point...not really organized. However, there is still hope! It will be interesting to see what happens between 94L and 92L...I think there may be a little Fujiwara if 92L and 94L both develop.




Expect a renumber soon for 95L?
Member Since: September 2, 2006 Posts: 110 Comments: 6878
Quoting BahaHurican:
MSWX, what's ur take on an interaction between 92L and 94L? The former's been racing towards the latter like crazy the last 12-24.....


94L is sort of in the break between two ridges and the steering isn't as fast. 92L is on the Southern periphery of the Azores High, which is keeping a swift easterly flow across the Central Atlantic. This is why there has been a closer encounter between the two. 94L should scoot on out of the way before 92L gets close enough to interact.
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Quoting Floodman:


I've been doing my best to keep them in line, but...well, you know how these people are...


Good job Flood...we can always count on you :)
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TD6...

I bet the area off the NC coast follows Bret, Cindy, and TD6 (possibly Franklin).

We're seeing a lot of frontal development this year. We already got two storms off the same front. Last time that happened was 2005. Would be crazy to see double frontal development twice in the same year..
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Feels a bit more like 2007 minus Dean and Felix so far (may that minus remain).

Lots of little storms. Funny how quite a few thought this might happen.
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will that was a little un forcasted
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.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
Quoting hurricanehanna:
Boy boy...I leave you guys for a year and I come back to shower curtains, trolls, grammar issues...nice to see some things never change :) I also noticed the crayons were left out at the NHC. Could be an interesting remainder of the season...


I've been doing my best to keep them in line, but...well, you know how these people are...
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TD6:

AL, 06, 2011081218, , BEST, 0, 357N, 647W, 30, 1011, TD
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TROPICAL DEPRESSION SIX

See, I told you the only thing stopping 95L from becoming a Tropical Depression was the NHC, lol.
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Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:
invest_al062011.invest 12-Aug-2011 20:08 1.0K

invest_RENUMBER_al952011_al062011.ren 12-Aug-2011 20:08 1.0K


No question on closed in NHC mind


Nice...figured it was.
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Quoting P451:


That's a heaping pile of spaghetti
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wait, where is 96L? Don't see it on the Navy site?
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93 could develop rapidily this wk and follow the rest to the n. atlantic graveyd
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MSWX, what's ur take on an interaction between 92L and 94L? The former's been racing towards the latter like crazy the last 12-24.....
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hello TD 6


AL, 06, 2011081218, , BEST, 0, 357N, 647W, 30, 1011, TD,
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Quoting ncstorm:
What in the world is off of NC coast?



Looks to be a thumbprint
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Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:
invest_al062011.invest 12-Aug-2011 20:08 1.0K


No question on closed in NHC mind
And there we go.

6/5/0/0.
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This week, NHC welcomed Jennifer Gray to its Visiting Scientist Program. Jennifer is a broadcast meteorologist with KTBS-TV3 in Shreveport, Louisiana. The Visiting Scientist Program is an opportunity for scientists to spend time with the Hurricane Specialists when there is a developing or active tropical cyclone present. This is the first year that the program has been opened up to television meteorologists who have a minimum four-year degree in the science.

http://www.facebook.com/US.NOAA.NationalHurricane Center.gov
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
I completely agree. Appears to be the only thing stopping it from becoming a cyclone.

What we're seeing right now kinda reminds me of 2005 when we were seeing cyclones developing left and right in random locations.

*Gasp* I just made a 2005 comparison...sorry blog.


**GLOWERING**

The corner young man...and put on the hat of shame!
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invest_al062011.invest 12-Aug-2011 20:08 1.0K

invest_RENUMBER_al952011_al062011.ren 12-Aug-2011 20:08 1.0K


No question on closed in NHC mind
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Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:
There may be a question whether the circulation on 95L is closed or not.
Link


I highly doubt that the circulation isn't closed.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:What the heck happened in the Atlantic basin? We have Invest 92L, Invest 93L, Invest 94L, Invest 95L. Will we get an Invest 96L?


Lol I thought the same thing when I got back from school. Last time I checked anything was 6:30 in the morning, and I was like "what?" when I saw NHC's front page.
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The only thing stopping this from being declared is the National Hurricane Center. Even if it isn't fully detached from the frontal boundary, neither was Cindy or Bret IIRC.



92L is looking really good right now. This will probably become a TD/TS over the weekend, but will likely curve out to sea, without affecting anybody directly.



94L deserves a yellow circle at this point...not really organized. However, there is still hope! It will be interesting to see what happens between 94L and 92L...I think there may be a little Fujiwara if 92L and 94L both develop.


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Quoting SQUAWK:


Aren't we supposed to be heading back into La Nina?


Prediction/forecast for neutral conditions through the heart of the season...
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Quoting SQUAWK:


Aren't we supposed to be heading back into La Nina?


Not during the hurricane season as you will see from the discussion here. Neutral conditions are almost certain to prevail until the season is over.
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Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:
There may be a question whether the circulation on 95L is closed or not.
Link


I would be highly surprised if it were not closed.
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Quoting kmanislander:


Last year was La Nina, this year is neutral. Two different set ups that will likely produce a different result this year. The troughs are unlikely to hang around the eastern Seaboard for all of the season.

Levi already posted the weakness was going to retreat west in the latter part of this month. This will open the door right up to the gulf and SE U.S.

It actually shows a very similar pattern to when hurricane Katrina was alive.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


Yes.


So it will be pulled OTS correct?
Member Since: September 2, 2006 Posts: 110 Comments: 6878
seems to be back now. technical difficulties i suppose
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There may be a question whether the circulation on 95L is closed or not.
Link
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Quoting tropicfreak:


Have you even looked at this....



93L is on the left. It is under 10-15 kt shear.

Doesn't look like dry air is anywhere near 93L either.



What have you got to say for yourself?


As you have asked a question well above that individuals pay grade I don't suppose he will have an answer
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what is wrong with the blog. cannot see the hide or show buttons
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Quoting SQUAWK:


Aren't we supposed to be heading back into La Nina?


We could - there is a La Niña Watch in effect.
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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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