Ophelia brushing Bermuda; Super Typhoon Nalgae hits the Philippines

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:50 PM GMT on October 01, 2011

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Hurricane Ophelia is steaming northwards to the east of Bermuda as a powerful Category 3 hurricane with 120 mph winds. Radar out of Bermuda shows that rain bands from Ophelia are beginning to affect the island, though as of noon Saturday, the Bermuda airport has reported just one brief rain shower and a peak wind gust of 21 mph. Recent satellite loops show that Ophelia is well-organized, with a prominent eye, good upper-level outflow, and solid lower-level spiral banding. The models agree that Ophelia will track far enough to the east of Bermuda that the island should see sustained winds below 30 mph, since it will be on the weak (left) side of the storm. The 11 am wind probability forecast from NHC gave Bermuda a 19% chance of receiving tropical storm force winds of 39 mph, and no chance of receiving hurricane force winds. Ophelia's closest approach to the island will be late Saturday night through early Sunday morning. Ophelia is likely to bring high winds and heavy rains to Southeast Newfoundland Monday. The 11 am wind probability forecast for Cape Race, Newfoundland gave it a 47% chance of receiving tropical storm force winds, and a 1% chance of hurricane force winds.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Ophelia.

Tropical Storm Philippe no threat to land
In the middle Atlantic, Tropical Storm Philippe continues to struggle against dry air and high wind shear. Satellite loops show Philippe is a small system with little heavy thunderstorm activity, with the surface circulation partially exposed to view by wind shear. Wind shear is a very high 30 - 40 knots, thanks to the upper-level outflow from Ophelia. This shear will remain high through Tuesday, but may relax to the moderate range as Philippe turns towards the north on Wednesday. It is unlikely that Philippe will trouble any land areas.

Elsewhere in the Atlantic, none of the computer models is calling for a new tropical storm to form in the coming seven days (though the NOGAPS model shows a strong tropical disturbance forming in the Western Caribbean in about 7 days, something it has erroneously been predicting frequently during the past few weeks.) The large-scale environment over the Atlantic currently favors sinking air, due to the current phase of the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO). This situation will likely last well into next week, and will discourage formation of new tropical storms. The MJO is a 30 - 60 day cycle of thunderstorm activity that affects the tropics.


Figure 2. True-color MODIS image of Typhoon Nalgae approaching the Philippine Islands, taken at 02:15 UTC Friday, September 30, 2011. At the time, Nalgae was a strengthening Category 1 typhoon with 90 mph winds. Image credit: NASA.

Super Typhoon Nalgae hits the Philippines
Typhoon Nalgae roared ashore over the Philippines' main island of Luzon as a super typhoon with 150 mph winds at 9 am local time this morning. Nalgae dumped heavy rains of 4 - 8 inches across a large swath of Northern Luzon; 4.81" of rain fell on Viganon the northwest coast of Luzon. The capital of Manila received 0.30" of rain from Nalgae, and experienced wind gusts up to 36 mph. Nalgae is the second major typhoon in a week to hit northern Luzon; on Monday, Typhoon Nesat hit the same region as a Category 3 storm with 120 mph winds, killing at least 52 people. Nalgae's rains fell on soils already saturated from Nesat's heavy rains, and the potential exists for high loss of life due to extreme flooding and mudslides. Nalgae is expected to follow a track almost exactly the same as Nesat's, passing near China's Hainan Island on Tuesday, and then hitting northern Vietnam.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Levi32:


CMC, but it matters not because the high is there on every single model.
What would the steering currents for that would be like? A Yucatan westward moving storm?
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Quoting petewxwatcher:


I was talking about the north gulf coast, like Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama. I also said peninsular Florida has a few more weeks to keep an eye on things.
What about going straight up Florida? It happened before, Hurricane Irene 1999.
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Quoting JLPR2:


What model is that?


CMC, but it matters not because the high is there on every single model.
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130. JLPR2
Quoting Levi32:
A massive high centered over Virginia in 120-144 hours means the Caribbean needs to be watched closely starting October 7th. It's not that far away now.



What model is that?
Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 7 Comments: 8747
Quoting Levi32:
A massive high centered over Virginia in 120-144 hours means the Caribbean needs to be watched closely starting October 7th. It's not that far away now.


Oh man!
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128. JLPR2
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Looks like we'll have a Category 4 hurricane on our hands soon, T-numbers are rising and most are at or surpassing C4 strength now.


Yeah, raw numbers at 6.5.

2011OCT01 211500 6.1 943.2/ -2.2 /117.4 6.1 6.5 6.5
Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 7 Comments: 8747
A massive high centered over Virginia in 120-144 hours means the Caribbean needs to be watched closely starting October 7th. It's not that far away now.

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Quoting sar2401:


Yeah, it's dusty here, but nothing like what you guys in Texas have been going through. The farmers here really depend on summer rainfall from tropical storms, and we haven't had a decent rainmaker since 2005. It looks like some of the cotton will make ithis year. Last year, they just gave up and plowed it under.
I have seen nothing around here, No hay, no cotton, no maize. A year ago crops looked pretty good but since we have had little to no rain the past 12 months nothing grew. I feel for the farmers and the animals big time. Until this year i never saw virga here, now that is basically all we get. Sucks to have heavy rain fall and not reach the ground just about every time, when it does fall you get a trace. I hate to be teased. LOL
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Last image before sunset.

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Looks like we'll have a Category 4 hurricane on our hands soon, T-numbers are rising and most are at or surpassing C4 strength now.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32830
122. JLPR2
Quoting HuracanTaino:
JLPR2 tell me your opinion on the system forming east of the islands, east of Barbados around 11N 51W...thanks


Not much there yet, no surface reflection with it so nothing going on yet. Probably being enhanced by the ULL close by. Need to watch it since convection is persisting and see if it develops some 850mb vort, which would indicate something trying to form closer to the surface.

Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 7 Comments: 8747
Quoting sar2401:
Assuming that Ophelia survives as a tropical storm and strikes the Canadian Maritimes, won't this be the third year in a row they have been affected but a hurricane or tropical storm? Seems very unusual to me after 45 years of storm watching.


Newfoundland (not technically part of the Maritimes, but anyway) was hit last year by Igor at hurricane strength, and this year by Maria. That's the first time Newfoundland has been hit by hurricanes in consecutive years since reliable records, etc. Ophelia would be adding insult to injury.
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Ophelia is probably 125-135mph right now.
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Quoting RickWPB:
Glad that Ophelia is missing Bermuda.

Bermuda Radar Loop


So am I. 2-3 days ago I never thought Ophelia would get this strong. 2 degrees further west and it would have been Fabian II.
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Quoting Gorty:
What's anyone's opinion on Phillippe? Will he hit the US and how strong will he get?


It's hard to see Philippe hitting anywhere in the US. The current track would sure make you think it might have a chance, but the models are in such good agreement turning it north that it's hard to discount them. The models haven't been so good on intensity, but they've been mostly right on when it comes to track. I think the chance that Philippe will make it to a Cat 1 storm has increased over the past 12 hours though.
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Glad that Ophelia is missing Bermuda.

Bermuda Radar Loop
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Quoting JLPR2:
Philippe is surprising me, holding itself together under so much shear.

JLPR2 tell me your opinion on the system forming east of the islands, east of Barbados around 11N 51W...thanks
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Quoting Gorty:
What's anyone's opinion on Phillippe? Will he hit the US and how strong will he get?

Hit the USA? Nah... How strong? Category 1.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32830
Quoting GainesvilleGator:


Temps in the GOM will be warmer than what we are currently seeing with Ophelia. The Carribean can support a cat5 hurrican and keep in mind that it does take time for these systems to wind down - see Irene over cooler water off the NE coast. If there is a front moving Southeastward that we could have a system moving towards the West coast of Florida quite fast like Wilma 2005.


I was talking about the north gulf coast, like Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama. I also said peninsular Florida has a few more weeks to keep an eye on things.
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Quoting bohonkweatherman:
I hope you get a tropical storm before season ends. Humidity here is 11 percent which is about the way it has been for months, south central texas is a desert now. Finally started Drought Stage 3 for water today, No more sprinklers, hand held hose with a sprayer that shuts off, no car washing or getting any water on sidewalks or streets etc. This will last a long time I have a feeling because I dont see us getting enough rain to get out of this status without something tropical next season or el nino which is not forecasted any time soon. I am so glad now that i have a smaller yard.


Yeah, it's dusty here, but nothing like what you guys in Texas have been going through. The farmers here really depend on summer rainfall from tropical storms, and we haven't had a decent rainmaker since 2005. It looks like some of the cotton will make ithis year. Last year, they just gave up and plowed it under.
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111. Gorty
What's anyone's opinion on Phillippe? Will he hit the US and how strong will he get?
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Quoting petewxwatcher:
I would say that the threat of a major hurricane in the north Gulf coast is much reduced by this cold front. Models hint at a west Caribbean hurricane forming 11-14 days out. If it forms. If it becomes a major. If it heads for the northern Gulf.

Even if all that comes to fruition I can't see a major retaining its strength all the way to the coast. Could be a Cat 1, and maaaaaybe a 2 if everything happened just right. I think the chance of anything beyond a Cat 1 is very low though.

Peninsular Florida still has a couple weeks to keep an eye out.


Temps in the GOM will be warmer than what we are currently seeing with Ophelia. The Carribean can support a cat5 hurrican and keep in mind that it does take time for these systems to wind down - see Irene over cooler water off the NE coast. If there is a front moving Southeastward that we could have a system moving towards the West coast of Florida quite fast like Wilma 2005.
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Quoting sar2401:
Assuming that Ophelia survives as a tropical storm and strikes the Canadian Maritimes, won't this be the third year in a row they have been affected but a hurricane or tropical storm? Seems very unusual to me after 45 years of storm watching.


Yes you are right...i live on the Avalon and we have seen plenty of this...
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Quoting sar2401:
The low here in Prattville, AL was 48 this morning. The temperature now (15:50) is only 72, after a high of 78. The humidity is also down to 30% with gusty ENE winds. Seems like this cold front has made a surprisingly large penetration into the deep South. Seems like this does not bode well for any TS formation in the GOM in the next week at least. Am I correct in this assumption? It would be nice to get (non-killer) tropical storm before the season ends since we, although not as bad as Texas, are also in the middle of a severe drought.
I hope you get a tropical storm before season ends. Humidity here is 11 percent which is about the way it has been for months, south central texas is a desert now. Finally started Drought Stage 3 for water today, No more sprinklers, hand held hose with a sprayer that shuts off, no car washing or getting any water on sidewalks or streets etc. This will last a long time I have a feeling because I dont see us getting enough rain to get out of this status without something tropical next season or el nino which is not forecasted any time soon. I am so glad now that i have a smaller yard.
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107. JLPR2
Nice!
Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 7 Comments: 8747
Quoting JLPR2:


Eye temp has risen too. Probably strengthening again.



I'm rooting for you Ophelia! XD


Looks like it could be another hurricane landfall in Newfoundland Canada, could be a really bad storm for them considering its strength right now.
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Quoting petewxwatcher:


Not quite true. The swells that have been generated in the last 6 hours will tend to stay east of the line. So the swells that hit the coast in 2 days are being generated now, and their path and size is being directed by the path as it is now.


Pete, OK, that makes sense. In this case, the wave heights should be mainly affecting open ocean but, as a former sailor, that would be good information if I was sailing east of Ophelia.
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Assuming that Ophelia survives as a tropical storm and strikes the Canadian Maritimes, won't this be the third year in a row they have been affected but a hurricane or tropical storm? Seems very unusual to me after 45 years of storm watching.
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The feature east of Barbados deserves invest status, continues to become better organize, quick.
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Quoting sar2401:
Pete, thanks for your information. I find them interesting from strictly a mapping point of view, but the wave heights will only be relevant if the storm actually follows that straight line.


Not quite true. The swells that have been generated in the last 6 hours will tend to stay east of the line. So the swells that hit the coast in 2 days are being generated now, and their path and size is being directed by the path as it is now.
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I would say that the threat of a major hurricane in the north Gulf coast is much reduced by this cold front. Models hint at a west Caribbean hurricane forming 11-14 days out. If it forms. If it becomes a major. If it heads for the northern Gulf.

Even if all that comes to fruition I can't see a major retaining its strength all the way to the coast. Could be a Cat 1, and maaaaaybe a 2 if everything happened just right. I think the chance of anything beyond a Cat 1 is very low though.

Peninsular Florida still has a couple weeks to keep an eye out.
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Pete, thanks for your information. I find them interesting from strictly a mapping point of view, but the wave heights will only be relevant if the storm actually follows that straight line.
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The low here in Prattville, AL was 48 this morning. The temperature now (15:50) is only 72, after a high of 78. The humidity is also down to 30% with gusty ENE winds. Seems like this cold front has made a surprisingly large penetration into the deep South. Seems like this does not bode well for any TS formation in the GOM in the next week at least. Am I correct in this assumption? It would be nice to get (non-killer) tropical storm before the season ends since we, although not as bad as Texas, are also in the middle of a severe drought.
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Hurricane Ella (1978) was the strongest hurricane ever recorded in Canadian waters.
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Sar2401 I like aspectre's projections. And the swells generated are much stronger along the right side of the straight line track. So it is useful.

And IMO the straight line projections are interesting.
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000
WTNT41 KNHC 012034
TCDAT1

HURRICANE OPHELIA DISCUSSION NUMBER 37
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL162011
500 PM AST SAT OCT 01 2011

OPHELIA HAS MAINTAINED ITS IMPRESSIVE CLOUD PATTERN...WITH DISTINCT EYE SURROUNDED BY A SYMMETRIC CENTRAL DENSE OVERCAST. BECAUSE OBJECTIVE AND SUBJECTIVE T-NUMBERS HAVE NOT CHANGED...THE INITIAL INTENSITY IS KEPT AT 105 KNOTS. SMALL FLUCTUATIONS IN INTENSITY ARE EXPECTED IN THE NEXT 12 HOURS...BUT A GRADUAL WEAKENING SHOULD BEGIN ON SUNDAY AS OPHELIA REACHES COOLER WATERS. THERE IS A STRONG LIKELIHOOD THAT OPHELIA WILL BEGIN TO BECOME POST-TROPICAL ON MONDAY AS IT PASSES NEAR OR OVER THE AVALON PENINSULA IN NEWFOUNDLAND.

OPHELIA HAS BEGUN TO RECURVE AND IS NOW MOVING TOWARD THE NORTH OR 010 DEGREES AT 23 KNOTS. THE HURRICANE CONTINUES TO BE EMBEDDED IN THE FAST SOUTHERLY FLOW BETWEEN THE SUBTROPICAL HIGH AND THE LARGE TROUGH OVER THE EASTERN UNITED STATES. AS THE TROUGH MOVES EASTWARD...OPHELIA SHOULD TURN MORE TOWARD THE NORTH-NORTHEAST WITH AN INCREASE IN FORWARD SPEED. THE TRACK GUIDANCE CONTINUES TO BE TIGHTLY PACKED...BUT THE ENTIRE ENVELOPE HAS SHIFTED A LITTLE BIT NORTHWARD FOR THIS CYCLE. THE OFFICIAL FORECAST IS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE GUIDANCE ENVELOPE AND TAKES THE CORE OF THE HURRICANE EAST OF BERMUDA IN THE NEXT FEW HOURS AND BRINGS THE CENTER OF THE CYCLONE NEAR THE AVALON PENINSULA ON MONDAY.


FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INIT 01/2100Z 31.6N 62.6W 105 KT 120 MPH
12H 02/0600Z 35.0N 62.0W 100 KT 115 MPH
24H 02/1800Z 40.0N 60.4W 90 KT 105 MPH
36H 03/0600Z 45.0N 56.0W 65 KT 75 MPH
48H 03/1800Z 48.0N 48.0W 50 KT 60 MPH...POST-TROP/EXTRATROP
72H 04/1800Z 50.0N 31.0W 40 KT 45 MPH...POST-TROP/EXTRATROP
96H 05/1800Z...DISSIPATED

$$
FORECASTER AVILA
Member Since: August 2, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 169
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

If it continues to build that ring of deep convection, yes, they will upgrade. I've noticed that is the basis for C4 status when a storm is in the middle of the Atlantic, aside from T-numbers.


True when a hurricane is in the tropics, but I haven't seen them do that without confirmation in the temperate zone for a long time.

In 1978 they did some recon missions into hurricane Ella and found her to be a Cat 4 far to the north. They hadn't expected that at all. Ella became a Cat 4 at 38 N. I believe at the time it was the furthest north a hurricane had become a Cat 4.

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ASPECTRE, let me ask you again, since I seem to have missed any previous reply the last time I asked. What meteorological purpose does this exercise serve? Plotting the straight line path of hurricane ignores any model or atmospheric conditions, so I fail to see the purpose of this.
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Send recon out for at least ONE mission.
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Quoting petewxwatcher:


Has the look but will they upgrade without recon or buoy confirmation? I'm thinking not.

If it continues to build that ring of deep convection, yes, they will upgrade. I've noticed that is the basis for C4 status when a storm is in the middle of the Atlantic, aside from T-numbers.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32830
Quoting hurricanehunter27:
Ophelia Could become a cat 4.



Has the look but will they upgrade without recon or buoy confirmation? I'm thinking not.
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Ophelia Could become a cat 4.

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Unless he gets to hurricane strength first!

Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
BULLETIN
TROPICAL STORM PHILIPPE ADVISORY NUMBER 31
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL172011
500 PM AST SAT OCT 01 2011

...PHILIPPE STRONGER THAN PREVIOUSLY ESTIMATED...


SUMMARY OF 500 PM AST...2100 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...25.2N 49.1W
ABOUT 1070 MI...1720 KM ESE OF BERMUDA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...WNW OR 300 DEGREES AT 9 MPH...15 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...996 MB...29.41 INCHES
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If Phillipe makes it to 11 p.m. Sunday as a tropical storm he will have been continuously at tropical storm strength longer than any other storm in recent years.
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BULLETIN
TROPICAL STORM PHILIPPE ADVISORY NUMBER 31
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL172011
500 PM AST SAT OCT 01 2011

...PHILIPPE STRONGER THAN PREVIOUSLY ESTIMATED...


SUMMARY OF 500 PM AST...2100 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...25.2N 49.1W
ABOUT 1070 MI...1720 KM ESE OF BERMUDA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...WNW OR 300 DEGREES AT 9 MPH...15 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...996 MB...29.41 INCHES
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32830
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Hurricane Ophelia is developing an intense ring of convection around its eye...Not sure if this is just a brief cycle, or the storm is strengthening.



Eye temp has risen too. Probably strengthening again.



I'm rooting for you Ophelia! XD
Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 7 Comments: 8747
Philippe is now up too 65mph
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115454
Hurricane Ophelia is developing an intense ring of convection around its eye...Not sure if this is just a brief cycle, or the storm is strengthening.

Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32830

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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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