94L still disorganized; Hurricane Gordon bearing down on the Azores

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:44 PM GMT on August 19, 2012

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A tropical wave (Invest 94L) located midway between the Lesser Antilles Islands and the coast of Africa is headed west at 20 - 25 mph. This storm is a threat to develop into a tropical storm that will affect the Lesser Antilles Islands as early as Wednesday. The storm is under light wind shear of 5 - 10 knots, and is over waters of 27°C. A large area of dry air lies just to the north of 94L, as seen on the latest Saharan Air Layer (SAL) analysis and water vapor satellite loops. This dry air is interfering with development, and this morning's visible satellite loop shows that 94L's heavy thunderstorm activity is a bit sparse. The storm does have an impressive amount of spin at middle levels of the atmosphere, though. A pass from the Indian OceanSAT-2 satellite Saturday night at 10:06 pm EDT noted a broad, elongated center of nearly calm winds several hundred miles in diameter at the surface, and nothing resembling a well-organized closed surface circulation. 94L will pass near buoy 41041 on Monday morning. The first hurricane hunter mission into 94L is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Invest 94L.

Forecast for 94L
The latest 8 am EDT run of the SHIPS model predicts that wind shear will be low, 5 - 10 knots, and ocean temperatures will be near 27°C through Monday, then warm to 28°C by Tuesday night. As is typical with storms making the crossing from Africa to the Antilles, dry air to the north will likely interfere with development, and the SHIPS model predicts increased dry air as 94L approaches the Lesser Antilles on Wednesday. However, with shear expected to be low, dry air may be less of an issue for 94L than it was for Ernesto or TD 7. Our two best performing models--the GFS and ECMWF--have both been taking 94L through the Lesser Antilles with every run for the past 36 hours. Both models continue to agree on the timing, with 94L arriving Wednesday night or Thursday morning. The BAMM model, which performed as well as the ECMWF and GFS at 5-day forecasts in 2011, is showing a track just north of the Lesser Antilles. Given this agreement among our top three models for long-range forecasts, I give a 60% chance that 94L will pass through the Lesser Antilles. In their 8 am EDT Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave 94L a 60% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Tuesday morning. The GFS model has backed off on its forecast that 94L will develop into a hurricane before reaching the islands, and is now predicting 94L will be a tropical storm with 40 - 50 mph winds at that time. The ECMWF model does not develop 94L. It is unlikely that 94L will be able to organize quickly enough to become anything stronger than a Category 1 hurricane before reaching the islands, given the storm's current struggles with dry air, and the lack of model support for intensification. With 94L staying relatively weak and disorganized, the chances of it turning to the northwest and missing the Lesser Antilles, as the NOGAPS model has been predicting, are diminishing. The GFS model predicts that 94L will go on to hit the Dominican Republic as a strong tropical storm on Friday, though the storm could also miss the island, passing just to the north or the south. At longer ranges, the storm is capable of going anywhere from Canada to Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula; it's too early to tell.


Figure 2. The 00Z (8 pm EDT) run of the GFS model from August 18, 2012, was done 20 different times at low resolution using slightly different initial conditions to generate an ensemble of forecasts (pink lines.) The high-resolution operational GFS forecast is shown in white. The GFS ensemble forecast is showing decreasing risk to the U.S. East Coast at long ranges, and an increasing risk to the Gulf Coast.

Gordon bears down on the Azores
Hurricane warnings are flying for the central and eastern Azores Islands as Hurricane Gordon barrels eastwards at 21 mph. Gordon's peak 110 mph winds it had last night made it the strongest hurricane of the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season so far. Latest visible satellite loops show that cold water and high wind shear are taking a toll on Gordon, with the southern portion of the storm deteriorating and the eye beginning to open up. However, Gordon will still be a Category 1 hurricane or strong tropical storm when it passes through the Azores Monday morning. Winds at Ponta Delgada were 11 mph out of the east at 10 am EDT this morning, but will rise through the day as Gordon approaches.

Gordon is not a threat to any other land areas, and the extratropical remnants of Gordon will not bring any strong winds or significant rain to Europe. The last time the Azores were affected by a tropical storm was in 2009, when Tropical Storm Grace brought 65 mph winds on October 4. No significant damage was reported. Ironically, the last hurricane to affect the Azores was the 2006 version of Hurricane Gordon, which caused minor damage in the Azores, consisting of mostly fallen trees and power outages. However, after Gordon became an extratropical low, four injuries due to falling debris from high wind were reported in Spain, and Gordon brought high winds and rain that affected practice rounds at the Ryder Cup golf tournament in Ireland.


Figure 3. MODIS satellite image of Hurricane Gordon taken on Saturday August 18, 2012, at 11:50 am EDT. At the time, Gordon was a Category 1 hurricane with 80 mph winds. Image credit: Navy Research Lab, Monterey.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting 954Soxfan:
As a South Floridian I am glad the models showing it coming here right now 5-6days out, that means it wont hit us. Anytime we have the cone pointed at us this far out they never come our way. Its a good sign. I feel bad for the Gulf Coast as it will probably end up there between New Orleans and the panhandle of FLA.


Need I remind you Frances and Wilma were pointed at us 5, 6 days, even a week in advance and still hit here?
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Quoting txwcc:


We can also have a cat 4 moving through the Central Caribbean, but it probably won't happen.


ha ha ha very funny.

no. I don't see a Cat 4 at all. I'd say Cat 2 maybe Cat 3, but Cat 3 is just pushing it.

so Cat 2/boarder Cat 3, but I am leaning more on moderate to strong Cat 2, rather than strong Cat2 boarder Cat 3
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11032
Why does the satellite loop go to crap at 25 degrees W in the atlantic??
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3309. LargoFl
Quoting Jeff9645:


Looking at the XTRP model, that must have been the one used by Dr. M last night when he commented about how 94L could be a Yucatan storm. I'm thinking Dr. M may be correct yet again.
..it would be great IF that happened
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36903
Quoting LargoFl:
..yes moving way too fast..just a swirl of strong thunderstorms right now..it just may NOT form unless it puts the brakes on
faster and faster it goes where it stops nobody knows. I expect this speed to continue well into the Caribbean until it reaches south of Haiti where the trade winds slow down and the pilling up of air begins, by then we should know where this is going.
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3307. Chiggy
06Z HWRF..
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3306. Grothar
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Here's a good graphic showing the increase in instability that should help 94L to slowly strengthen over the next 36 hours. Keep in mind that this is based on relatively low resolution data, but paints a good broad picture of the enviroment.

Anything below zero is stable, zero is neutral, while anything above zero is unstable. The higher the number, the more unstable the environment which favors deeper convection.

As 94L moves west along about 15-20N, instability increases.

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3304. bappit
From Brownsville forecast discussion (95L):

LONG TERM /TUESDAY NIGHT THROUGH SUNDAY/...WEAK LOW PRESSURE OVER THE UPPER EAST COAST OF MEXICO AND/OR A SURFACE TROUGH OF LOW PRESSURE ALONG THE LOWER TEXAS COAST WILL COMBINE WITH PRECIPITABLE WATER VALUES AROUND 2 INCHES TO PRODUCE ISOLATED TO SCATTERED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS TUESDAY NIGHT THROUGH THURSDAY NIGHT. ASIDE FROM STREAMER SHOWERS OVER THE LOWER TEXAS COASTAL WATERS DURING THE OVERNIGHT HOURS OF FRIDAY TO SUNDAY...DRIER WEATHER IS EXPECTED DURING THE DAYLIGHT HOURS OF THAT PERIOD AS MID-LEVEL HIGH PRESSURE BECOMES MORE DOMINANT OVER THE BRO CWFA...AVAILABLE PRECIPITABLE WATER DECREASES TO AROUND 1.5 INCHES...AND THE SURFACE TROUGH OF LOW PRESSURE ALONG THE COAST DISSIPATES.
Member Since: May 18, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 5954
3303. Chiggy
Quoting 954Soxfan:
As a South Floridian I am glad the models showing it coming here right now 5-6days out, that means it wont hit us. Anytime we have the cone pointed at us this far out they never come our way. Its a good sign. I feel bad for the Gulf Coast as it will probably end up there between New Orleans and the panhandle of FLA.


Good point actually.. :)
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3302. Patrap
GOP Cancels Opening Convention Night

GOP Cancels Convention Opening Night
DAVID ESPO | August 31, 2008 05:18 PM EST |
ST. PAUL, Minn. — John McCain tore up the script for his Republican National Convention on Sunday, ordering the cancellation of all but essential opening-day activities as Hurricane Gustav churned toward New Orleans.
“This is a time when we have to do away with our party politics and we have to act as Americans,” he said as fellow Republicans converged on their convention city to nominate him for the White House.
On the eve of his convention, McCain positioned himself as an above-politics, concerned potential president determined to avoid the errors made by President Bush three years ago. “I have every expectation that we will not see the mistakes of Katrina repeated,” he said.
Bush and Vice President Cheney scrapped plans to address the convention on Monday, and McCain’s aides chartered a jet to fly delegates back to their hurricane-threatened states along the Gulf Coast. Campaign manager Rick Davis said the first-night program was being cut from seven hours to two and one half.
The formal business of the convention includes nominating McCain for president and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his vice presidential running mate on Wednesday. McCain’s acceptance speech, set for prime time on Thursday evening, is among the most critical events of the campaign for his chances of winning the White House.
The hasty reordering of an event months in the planning was unprecedented, affecting not only the program on the podium but the accompanying fundraising, partying and other political activity that unfolds around the edges of a national political convention.
McCain said he was looking forward to being the convention but did not say when he would arrive. He spoke via satellite from St. Louis after he and Palin received a briefing on hurricane preparations in Jackson, Miss.
In an interview with NBC, he said it was possible he would make his acceptance speech not from the convention podium but via satellite from the Gulf Coast region.
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3301. LargoFl
Quoting GTcooliebai:
This thing is moving too fast, convection already trying to get ahead of the circulation, I wonder how wind shear is looking in this region?

..yes moving way too fast..just a swirl of strong thunderstorms right now..it just may NOT form unless it puts the brakes on
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36903
3300. icmoore
Quoting Grothar:
The GFS has this as a slow mover. I know I've been posting these for a few days, but they've been largely overlooked.



Did you post something? I didn't see anything hmm maybe I overlooked it :)
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Quoting StormTracker2K:


Talk about ironey huh. Didn't this happen the last time we had the RNC in Lousiana in 2008? Gustav?
Wasn't RNC in Minneapolis or somewhere up north?

I think hurricanes during RNC conventions is more a function of the date... I mean... end of August, beginning of September? Please.

Quoting StormTracker2K:


What will be funny is that run after run will show 94L going near or over FL but then everyone will still bash the GFS. Other than the 12Z run of the GFS it has show a storm either crossing or riding up FL 4 out of the last 5 runs. Further more the Euro brings 94L NE across S FL similar to Fay in 08.
Florida has been in the forecast in some way or the other for days. It can't be that hard to see at least some potential for it to get hit, regardless of whether the storm tracks north or south of the Antilles. It's all about the timing and strength of that next trough, IMO.

Quoting txwcc:


Whoa there, horsey. ST2K was just stating that Levi never takes the time to plus comments he feel are worthwhile. Makes many wonder about how he feels. And some might be under the impression that he thinks his head is too big and that's he's all that.

That's all, Baha.
Ah... much clearer. I did find it kinda weird ST2K would say something like that.

Thanks.
Quoting AegirsGal:
How do you know 'whom' has plussed or minused a post? Doesn't it just show up when someone has, but no identification, right?
If you hover over the +#, you can see who plussed.

I just was a bit disconcerted by the idea of this blog as a "social network" rather than as an information sharing one.
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This thing is moving too fast, convection already trying to get ahead of the circulation, I wonder how wind shear is looking in this region?

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Quoting RTSplayer:



Strong storms produce something called the "Island rebound effect" which actually pushes them away from islands.

Wilma also showed a rebound effect as it was making landfall at Mexico, as the main convection mass kept moving forward, while the eye was somewhat stationary for a few hours; pushing itself away from land, but eventually it couldn't stop moving forward, and went on land.

Anyway, Island rebound happens with cat 3 and above, and the models are not good at dealing with it on track or intensity.


What happens is it LOOKS like a straight line will take the storm over the island, but it pushest itself away from the island and hooks around it instead. This prevents the island from weakening the storm, and screws up the storm track by about 50 to 100 miles, depending on the size and topography of the island the storm is "dodging".

It usually needs to be a really strong storm with a solid eye-wall to do this.


We just use the Death Ridge. ;)
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 676
Good morning grothar as well:)
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Quoting LargoFl:
might not too, still moving way too fast


well Ernesto was moving fast and TD7 was moving faster than both ernesto and 94L so maybe for it not to it would have to be moving faster... hmm faster than TD7 and Ernesto it seems hmm that would be faster than 25kts which it is not sooo... yeah as I said should be TD9 by either 11am, 5pm, or 11pm today
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11032
Quoting RTSplayer:



Well, the statement isn't exactly true.

"Science" is the study of reality.

The problem with that statement is that people tend to stand on existing theory as being "true" and refuse to admit gaps in it, or apply the theory to something it cannot logically be applied to. Ironically, the scientists themselves do this more than anyone else.


"Science" and "truth" are not identical.

"Science" is the search for Truth about the world and universe, and it is actually wrong all the time, more often than not, in fact.

science  
sci·ence
noun
1.
a branch of knowledge or study dealing with a body of facts or truths systematically arranged and showing the operation of general laws: the mathematical sciences.
2.
systematic knowledge of the physical or material world gained through observation and experimentation.
3.
any of the branches of natural or physical science.
4.
systematized knowledge in general.
5.
knowledge, as of facts or principles; knowledge gained by systematic study.



People, even all people at times, misunderstand what they "know," even within the body of "science".


What you know or what you think you know is not necessarily the truth, it's at best a model that approximates the truth, unless you're very lucky.
I think you're confusing the philosophy of science with scientific fact, and scientific fact is what Dr. Tyson was referring to with that statement. In that regard, then, it's entirely true. In fact, it's the only absolute, provable, and knowable truth in this entire Universe.
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GROTHAR, you have our attention with the GFS projections for next Monday and Tuesday...right when the RNC is to be up and going about 17 miles to my east. IF such a storm could be close to FL by this upcoming weekend, I am sure the Emergency MGMT folks, meterologists, NHC, etc. will be ready/are ready now.
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Quoting FLWeatherFreak91:
Has anyone here done any research or learned anything about why tropical cyclones tend to follow vaguely defined routes through the Caribbean and sometimes into the Gulf, avoiding all landmasses on the trek. For example Ivan...

I just find it interesting that a CV waves can ride the ITCZ across the atlantic, find themselves traversing the length of the Caribbean hitting nothing but the windward and leeward island, and then being drawn north by a trough at the perfect time to shoot the gap between Cuba and Cozumel...

Is there any mechanism encouraging the systems to avoid land, or is it a shear coincidence that the atmospheric dynamics and the geographical dynamics align to provide a route of 4,000 miles across open ocean (maybe) encountering one of the lesser Antilles?



Strong storms produce something called the "Island rebound effect" which actually pushes them away from islands.

Wilma also showed a rebound effect as it was making landfall at Mexico, as the main convection mass kept moving forward, while the eye was somewhat stationary for a few hours; pushing itself away from land, but eventually it couldn't stop moving forward, and went on land.

Anyway, Island rebound happens with cat 3 and above, and the models are not good at dealing with it on track or intensity.


What happens is it LOOKS like a straight line will take the storm over the island, but it pushest itself away from the island and hooks around it instead. This prevents the island from weakening the storm, and screws up the storm track by about 50 to 100 miles, depending on the size and topography of the island the storm is "dodging".

It usually needs to be a really strong storm with a solid eye-wall to do this.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
so, I think this is better news for Florida?
Quoting clwstmchasr:
Post 3267: models definitely trending north and east.
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3288. Grothar
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Quoting FLWeatherFreak91:
Right through VA. I wouldn't have guessed...


I made a cone of where I think that 94L might go, then put a line in the middle of the cone and added intensity. This is the first cone I've made that brought 94L over VA in the center line. So I am not wishcasting at all.

Last 2 forecasts:

Original


Second:
Member Since: September 3, 2011 Posts: 13 Comments: 3468
Quoting FLWeatherFreak91:
Has anyone here done any research or learned anything about why tropical cyclones tend to follow vaguely defined routes through the Caribbean and sometimes into the Gulf, avoiding all landmasses on the trek. For example Ivan...

I just find it interesting that a CV waves can ride the ITCZ across the atlantic, find themselves traversing the length of the Caribbean hitting nothing but the windward and leeward island, and then being drawn north by a trough at the perfect time to shoot the gap between Cuba and Cozumel...

Is there any mechanism encouraging the systems to avoid land, or is it a shear coincidence that the atmospheric dynamics and the geographical dynamics align to provide a route of 4,000 miles across open ocean (maybe) encountering one of the lesser Antilles?


I'm not sure about that long a track. But I was surprised to learn that only one storm that has crossed Florida actually made landfall in TX.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 676
3283. LargoFl
Quoting wunderkidcayman:
by the looks of it we should have TD9 by 94L by either 11am or 5pm or 11pm today
might not too, still moving way too fast
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36903
3282. LargoFl
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36903
by the looks of it we should have TD9 by 94L by either 11am or 5pm or 11pm today
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11032
Quoting Clearwater1:
Has there ever been a hurricane or TS that has headed due east from Mx To FL? Just wondering if that's a possible scenario with 95, what with that trof in place.
Anyone? Oh, def. not wishcasting, just wondering.

edit due east not west.


Hurricane Bob and Hurricane Henri in 1979 both had tracks that traveled east from western BOC.

Tropical storm Bess in 1978

Hurricane Edith in 1971 turned east after reaching western BOC.

One that reached Florida from BOC is tropical storm Josephine in 1996 or hurricane Earl nad Mitch in 1998.

It can happen !!!
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Has anyone here done any research or learned anything about why tropical cyclones tend to follow vaguely defined routes through the Caribbean and sometimes into the Gulf, avoiding all landmasses on the trek. For example Ivan...

I just find it interesting that a CV waves can ride the ITCZ across the atlantic, find themselves traversing the length of the Caribbean hitting nothing but the windward and leeward island, and then being drawn north by a trough at the perfect time to shoot the gap between Cuba and Cozumel...

Is there any mechanism encouraging the systems to avoid land, or is it a shear coincidence that the atmospheric dynamics and the geographical dynamics align to provide a route of 4,000 miles across open ocean (maybe) encountering one of the lesser Antilles?
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3278. LargoFl
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36903
Quoting Patrap:


Most Along the Northern Gulf Coast to Brownsville consider Florida our First Barrier Island, so thanx for being there.

: )

Now that is just plain funny there!
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until 94l actually becomes something there is no reason to panic people. get a grip!!!

94l looks as dry and harmless right now as its looked in days...a
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3274. Grothar
I told you people last week to make sure you have one of these.

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Quoting bappit:
"I'm subsiding, I'm subsiding! Ohhh, my beautiful tropicalness ..."

Seems to be a reoccurring theme this year, similar to the SAL we had in 2006.
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3272. Patrap
Currently Active Tropical Cyclones
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Models last week called this, front stalling out front over the GOM, with tail end spinning something up

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3270. bappit
"I'm subsiding, I'm subsiding! Ohhh, my beautiful tropicalness ..."

Member Since: May 18, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 5954
3269. Grothar
The GFS has this as a slow mover. I know I've been posting these for a few days, but they've been largely overlooked.

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Quoting txwcc:
I couldn't imagine the carnage over the years of Miami and south Florida if the landmass of Cuba was not there.

Hard to fathom.

Unless you get an Andrew that comes from the due East. Then you can get really slammed.
Here's one what if the all of the islands in the Caribbean weren't there? I think the carnage would increase tenfold.
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3267. LargoFl
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36903




Showing some twisting down here
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3263. Grothar
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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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