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 StormTracker2K:
The thing that irks me is Levi32 comes on here and doesn't plus not one comment from any other blogger on this blog but then everybody is supposed to respect his forecast. I listen to all people's opinions and enjoy listening to them but this guy thinks he's head honcho so much that no one here gets plussed by a great post which there are many on here from many "Great" bloggers.

Hold and let me find some Cheese for your Wine!
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3062. ncstorm
06z Nogaps
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Quoting WxGeekVA:


94L looks... Terrible, to say the least.
its got a great spin but the dry air wont let it develop thunderstorm activity. same thing with irene though. was a naked swirl at one point due to the saharan air mass north of it. once it got past 50W, it became a tropical storm
Member Since: July 25, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 1102
Quoting STXHurricanes2012:

Yep,95L looks way better organized than 94L and 95L!



its 96L you said 95L two times



boy you are so mixed up this AM
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115122
3058. WxLogic
SUSPECT AREA --GULF OF MEXICO -- ADDED --
FLIGHT ONE -- TEAL 70 --
A. 20/1900Z
B. AFXXX 01BBA INVEST
C. 20/1630Z
D. 23.0N 96.5W
E. 20/1830Z TO 21/0000Z
F. SFC TO 10,000FT
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3057. SLU
The large circulation we saw last night might no longer be closed.
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Quoting WxGeekVA:


94L looks... Terrible, to say the least.

It just lacks convection. Its center is well defined and closed.

Look for convection to fire around 48W.
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Quoting MahFL:


The 5 day tracks are pretty good too.


They are definitely getting better but you need an actual storm or hurricane first in order to properly initiate the data collection for the model runs.
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Quoting SLU:
20/1145 UTC 23.2N 97.1W T1.0/1.0 95L -- Atlantic

95L might even get the dreaded "I" name before it.

Yep,95L looks way better organized than 94L and 96L!
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3052. ncstorm
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Quoting STXHurricanes2012:

I said it cause u all keep talking about 94L and not 95L and 96L! 95l is much closer to home than 94L right now!Although could be a threat to the US late next week!


As long as 95l stays to the west and hugs the coast it won't do anything other than pump some beneficial rain into Texas.

If it somehow took a NE or ENE track across the center of the Gulf, then it would be really dangerous.


Right now the GFS and half the other models say it's going to turn back west, and the models that disagree hug the coast, so it shouldn't be too big of a concern.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Quoting SLU:
20/1145 UTC 23.2N 97.1W T1.0/1.0 95L -- Atlantic

95L might even get the dreaded "I" name before it.



i think the blog may get mad at 95L if it did that lol but hey thats the way the weather works
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115122
Quoting txwcc:


Chill. Sorry that Hermine never made it up your way but don't take it out on the others forecasting 94L.

Relax.

??
If your talking 2010 then its a no! Her center came over us.
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94L looks... Terrible, to say the least.
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Did it ever occur to you guys that Floyd developed further west then 94L is right now?? Yet it still became a monster. If 94L tracks north of the islands, we will have a dangerous storm heading to the USA.

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3044. SLU
20/1145 UTC 23.2N 97.1W T1.0/1.0 95L -- Atlantic

95L might even get the dreaded "I" name before it.
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3043. ncstorm
Look at the SE coast..lows.lows..lows...

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3042. SLU
20/1145 UTC 37.7N 23.9W T2.0/3.0 GORDON -- Atlantic
20/1145 UTC 10.4N 25.4W TOO WEAK 96L -- Atlantic
20/1145 UTC 15.7N 44.8W TOO WEAK 94L -- Atlantic

Qudos to the EURO. If the GFS solution over the last few days panned out, 94L should have been a strong TS by the end of today ....
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The storm hasn't even formed yet. There is no telling where 94L will ultimately go. The 3 day rule applies in this situation; that is, I would start paying attention 3 days prior to expected impact per the models.
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convection that popped on 94L's LLCOC is contiuning to build

LLCOC stoped its WNW-N of due W movement now moving true W
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 12035
Quoting STXHurricanes2012:

I said it cause u all keep talking about 94L and not 95L and 96L! 95l is much closer to home than 94L right now!Although could be a threat to the US late next week!




hmmmm 94L and 95L is cloer too home then 96L is
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115122
Quoting Tazmanian:




i think we no that

I said it cause u all keep talking about 94L and not 95L and 96L! 95l is much closer to home than 94L right now!Although could be a threat to the US late next week!
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Quoting allancalderini:
Imagine if 95L steal the name Isaac of 94L people in here would have a bad time...
rookies
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Quoting allancalderini:
Imagine if 95L steal the name Isaac of 94L people in here would have a bad time...



i was this about too say some in lol
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115122
Well today I start as a volunteer at me son's school with the pre-schoolers.They have another week of summer break left.I'm going in to help the teacher get the room set up and help the parents who are just getting use to this school thing.Later folks good day to you.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 16979
Jeff Masters may have to increase the odds of a Hurricane (Issac) striking Tampa during the Republican National Convention next week. How ironic after his blog last week.
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Quoting Tazmanian:
..big.surf.this.winter.n.shore.hi
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Imagine if 95L steal the name Isaac of 94L people in here would have a bad time...
Member Since: October 15, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 4338
3029. LargoFl
Quoting RTSplayer:
What the...

The GFS wants to try to name one of those surface lows along the front exiting the East coast.

It's also spamming all sorts of tropical lows for the next several days.

well there is a purple watch area up along the south east coastline.....boy that track up the west coast of florida is a bad one..a lil to the right near tampa and up the bay it comes....thats the worst case for a storm to come in here
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 38521
Quoting STXHurricanes2012:
One last thought before I go...We have Gordon,and 2 other invests other than 94L lol! Peace out for now!




i think we no that
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3027. Matt74
Quoting txwcc:


Really?
really?
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WOW 174HR

192HR
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Quoting Neapolitan:
Lower than that, even: 0.2%, or 1-in-500...


Talk about ironey huh. Didn't this happen the last time we had the RNC in Lousiana in 2008? Gustav?
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Quoting RTSplayer:
According to Buoy 41041, the CoC must have already passed 46W...

Station 41041
NDBC
Location: 14.175N 45.998W
Date: Mon, 20 Aug 2012 11:50:00 UTC
Winds: S (180°) at 5.8 kt gusting to 7.8 kt
Significant Wave Height: 6.6 ft
Dominant Wave Period: 8 sec
Atmospheric Pressure: 29.89 in and rising
Air Temperature: 75.6 F
Dew Point: 75.6 F
Water Temperature: 81.3 F


Sattelite says NE of there.

Quoting floridaboy14:
GFS once again being inconsistent. BAM models are north of the islands into florida and the ukment is just north of the islands. lots of inconsistency here


BAMD is in the caribbean.


according to the steering map, it show the reason why 94L got pulled a bit northward, (small/slight weakness) but it also show what I am expecting which is a turn to the WSW, (building high to the WNW-NW)

Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 12035
One last thought before I go...We have Gordon,and 2 other invests other than 94L lol! Peace out for now!
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3020. LargoFl
Quoting weatherh98:


The cone of doom is extending from panama to Portugal.
LOL..just about
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 38521
What the...

The GFS wants to try to name one of those surface lows along the front exiting the East coast.

It's also spamming all sorts of tropical lows for the next several days.





Does anyone have a link to that hilarious 2012 graphic with all the named storms in the basin at the same time?
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
3018. MahFL
Quoting weathermanwannabe:
Good Morning. Worth repeating that we will not have a handle on where 94L will end up, US wise if that is the case, until it gets to the vicinity of the Northern Antilles and the NHC can get a handle on the 3-day track from there.


The 5 day tracks are pretty good too.
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The thing that irks me is Levi32 comes on here and doesn't plus not one comment from any other blogger on this blog but then everybody is supposed to respect his forecast. I listen to all people's opinions and enjoy listening to them but this guy thinks he's head honcho so much that no one here gets plussed by a great post which there are many on here from many "Great" bloggers.
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3014. LargoFl
Quoting Kristina40:
It is pouring again in Panama City. A tropical storm in this area would be disastrous right now with flooding. The ground is completely saturated from darn near non stop rain for the past two months. We had two days of sunshine and now another week of rain. UGH.
yes stay safe up there, watch for flooded roadways
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 38521
Wow I'm not talking about his track about 94L.I'm talking about what happen in the past storms this season!
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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.