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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Here comes the doom..
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Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36856
Quoting MAweatherboy1:
Texas maybe?

So the trough did outrun it this run, what interesting couple of days coming up, as this one will really come down to timing.
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Someone's doomed!
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AL942012 - INVEST

Storm Relative 1km Geostationary Visible Imagery Loop

Zoom is active









Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
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BAMM still wants to be Rita.

GFS and TVCN still wants to be Gustav or Ivan.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Strengthening!
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189H move a bit more WNW into the yucatan channel
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11004
Quoting GetReal:
In the mean time???



Yeah been watching that
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 676
Texas maybe?

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Quoting Patrap:
Brownsville
NEXRAD Radar

Base Reflectivity 0.50° Elevation
Range 248 NMI



What do we have down here?
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One can easily see the tightening inflow in the S to Se Quad here on the Viz.




Seem's the flue is opening and a Big Log is beginning to feel the match.



Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
Oh Lord...

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Quoting washingtonian115:
Oh lord not Florida...this blog will be swarmed with them!.Lol J/K.
You got that right wash
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In the mean time???

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180H landfall on W tip of Cuba
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11004
Quoting GetReal:


Stalled just south of the W tip of Cuba.... Looking for an opening.
I wonder if the trough will outrun it and shunt it back west?
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Looking at the Dvorak, 94L is gaining some Bones and maybe, just beginning to construct a Warm column.





Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
Quoting FSUCOOPman:


Shhh...don't say the F word.
FSU.......It's all a guess now
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Stalled just south of the W tip of Cuba.... Looking for an opening.
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Quoting washingtonian115:
Sorta like Gustav 2008.Was looking like a hot mess.As soon as it got a taste of those sst and high TCHP in bomb out into a strong cat 4.


and as I was saying it could be like Gustav hmm


Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11004
Quoting MAweatherboy1:
Get ready for the hype to begin. Again.

Oh lord not Florida...this blog will be swarmed with them!.Lol J/K.
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94L ShortWave IR Loop

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
Quoting PalmBeachWeather:
??
Well it's a low pressure area centered over Illinois not sure if it would be in the Upper Levels or not, put it's a piece of energy being sent down from the trough, could even be a cut-off low.
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Get ready for the hype to begin. Again.

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286. JLPR2
With every update the vort is regaining strength bit by bit and getting rounder.



94L might not show it convection-wise but its spin is improving.
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Quoting weatherman12345:
looks to be Florida bound this run...


Shhh...don't say the F word.
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94L definitely winding up and getting better organized pretty quickly now.
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Quoting weatherman12345:
Thats what I said. Shouldnt it be much stronger there then?
Sorta like Gustav 2008.Was looking like a hot mess.As soon as it got a taste of those sst and high TCHP in bomb out into a strong cat 4.
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If it survives Cuba it will go to the Gulf:

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Impact by Area
Country State Deaths Damage
Antigua and Barbuda
3 $159.9 million
Guadeloupe
0 $22 million
St. Kitts and Nevis
5 $484 million
British Virgin Islands
0 $9.404 million
Dominican Republic
380 $1.2 billion
Haiti
209 $179 million
Bahamas
1 Unknown
Cuba
6 $305.8 million
United States U.S. Virgin Islands 0 $2 million
Puerto Rico 7 $1.9 billion
Alabama 1 $201.4 million
Florida 0 $472.1 million
Georgia 0 $4.3 million
Louisiana 3 $30.1 million
Mississippi 0 $676.8 million
Total 604 $5.9 billion






Hurricane Georges hours before attaining its peak intensity





Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
162H still over the Cayman area heading fro W tip of Cuba and GOM
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11004
Quoting weatherman12345:
looks to be Florida bound this run...
Quoting GTcooliebai:
There comes an ULL attached to a trough ready to pick it up.
??
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Morning all. May the GFS be wrong this time.
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276. Relix
The GFS model run is a bit too southerly. I actually expect a strong hit to PR and then RD. No way this is going into the Caymans.
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Quoting MAweatherboy1:
Cuba bound at 162:

There comes an ULL attached to a trough ready to pick it up.
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If that run were to verify future Isaac will go over some of the warmest sst and highest TCHP in the basin.
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making the turn now
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
1003 mb. and strengthening as it takes a turn towards the northwest.



Charlie?
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Quoting HurricaneDean07:

Helene....
I need to play a romantic song to bring her in...

Come on Helene! you can do it! Come to Texas!
Been through the desert on a storm with no name.
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looks like landfall of the Caymans at 156H
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11004
Cuba bound at 162:

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1003 mb. and strengthening as it takes a turn towards the northwest.

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Quoting Patrap:
Brownsville
NEXRAD Radar

Base Reflectivity 0.50° Elevation
Range 248 NMI



Helene....
I need to play a romantic song to bring her in...

Come on Helene! you can do it! Come to Texas!
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I noted earlier that usually when a specific area has been wet it usually leads up to something bigger down the road.Only a week before Irene came to the east coast NYC had set a record for rain.We here in D.C were also very wet.
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Quoting yoboi:


it might already be in the gom....take a look at gom radar...


Link

GOMEX flash...I see what you mean...seems like rotation has moved back over the water.
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Quoting will40:



still stalled at 156


a bit stronger too
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11004

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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.