The new hottest place on Earth: Death Valley, California

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:18 PM GMT on September 13, 2012

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As any weather aficionado can avow, Earth's most iconic weather record has long been the legendary all-time hottest temperature of 58°C (136.4°F) measured 90 years ago today at El Azizia, Libya on September 13, 1922. One hundred thirty six degrees! It's difficult to comprehend that heat like that could exist on our planet. For 90 years, no place on Earth has come close to beating the unbelievable 136 degree reading from Al Azizia, and for good reason--the record is simply not believable. But Earth's mightiest weather record has been officially cast down. Today, the official arbiter of Earth's weather records, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), announced that the all-time heat record held for exactly 90 years by El Azizia in Libya "is invalid because of an error in recording the temperature." The WMO committee found five major problems with the measurement. Most seriously, the temperature was measured in a paved courtyard over a black, asphalt-like material by a new and inexperienced observer, not trained in the use of an unsuitable replacement instrument that could be easily misread. The observer improperly recorded the observation, which was consequently in error by about 7°C (12.6°F.) The new official highest hottest place on the planet is now Death Valley, California. A remarkable high temperature of 56.7°C (134°F) was measured there on 10 July 1913, at Greenland Ranch.


Figure 1. The trading post at Al Azizia, Libya in 1923. The photo was taken from the Italian military fort located on a small hill just south of the trading post. It was at this fort that the temperature of 58°C (136.4°F) was observed on Sept. 13, 1922 (used with permission from the family of Gen. Enrico Pezzi).

The story behind the overturning of Earth's most hallowed weather record
Today's announcement is the culmination of a 3-year research effort begun by wunderground weather historian, Christopher C. Burt. His blog post today, World Heat Record Overturned--A Personal Account, provides a fascinating detective story on how the record came to be cast down--and how the Libyan revolution of 2012 almost prevented this from happening.


Figure 2. The new official hottest place on the planet: Death Valley, California. Wide open spaces, infinite views, intensely salty water, mind-boggling heat. What's not to love about this place? Image credit: Wunderphotographer SonomaCountyRAF.

Dead Heat: The Video
Don't miss the 25-minute wunderground video, Dead Heat, a detective story on how the El Azizia record was overturned.

Atlantic tropical update
Tropical Storm Nadine is recurving to the northwest and north well east of the Lesser Antilles Islands, on a track that would likely keep this storm far out at sea away from any land areas. However, Nadine may eventually threaten the Azores Islands or Newfoundland; the models are divided on how the steering currents will evolve next week, and we cannot be sure which way Nadine will go during the middle of next week.

The models predict that a trough of low pressure off the U.S. East Coast may serve as the focus for development of a non-tropical low pressure system on Sunday or Monday, but this low will likely form too far to the north to become a tropical storm. The GFS model has been predicting a tropical wave coming off the coast of Africa may develop next week, but has not been consistent with the timing or location of the development.

In the Western Pacific, Super Typhoon Sanba is an impressive top-end Category 4 storm with 155 mph winds, and is headed north-northwest towards a possible landfall in Korea early next week.

Given the importance of the new world record all-time high temperature, I'll leave this post up until Saturday afternoon, when I'll post an update on the tropics.

Jeff Masters

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1547. weatherbro
7:12 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting gordydunnot:
Looking at the satellite loops this morning there appears to be a lot of energy left in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean to disperse. Maybe an interesting end to Sept. and first half of Oct. The gulf kind of looks like it doesn't know where to spin up something first.


The SW Caribbean yes but the GOM doesn't look too promising as troughs will be ushering in cold fronts.
Member Since: May 26, 2007 Posts: 47 Comments: 1368
1546. interstatelover7165
6:04 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
If anybody is wondering, the current Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) is 78.5 units. Michael contributed the most, at 16.5 units, while Joyce contributed the least amount, at 0.245 units. Nadine is currently in 7th place for the season, with 5.05 units.
Take that EPAC.
Member Since: August 18, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 994
1545. HurrMichaelOrl
5:39 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
It appears that Typhoon Sanba is going to move right over Okinawa. The typhoon was moving NNW but appears to have turned N based on the last few frames of the radar. Winds are 40 gusting to 59 mph but should ramp up really soon as the center approaches in the next few hours. It is still dark there but the webcams around Okinawa should be really interesting around sunrise. I hope everybody on the island and nearby stays safe.

What are the maximum sustained winds of Sanba?
Member Since: July 13, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1161
1544. washingtonian115
5:05 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
What the hell is this?.So i just did my research on the wave near the islands and it has good 850,700,and 500mb vorticity.Along with good divergence.Still working on the convergence though.Shear is now forecast to be favorable in the caribbean when just 2 days ago conditions were suppose to be unfavorable the sst are already there to use.Seems something is trying to spin up with this wave..it's very fishy...
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17593
1543. HurrMichaelOrl
5:03 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting 7544:


yep another wet week ahead


Good news, as the rainy season is about to come to an end and despite the wet summer, all it has taken recently is a few sunny days for the grass and other vegetation to start drying out. I grow a TON of plants (palms, orchids, etc.), so I am more sensitive to this aspect of the local climate than most.

The recent rainfall we have received has not been the traditional diurnal sea-breeze driven rainy season type. Rather it has been from showers/storms from easterly flow, old fronts and weak low pressure systems.
Member Since: July 13, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1161
1542. WunderAlertBot (Admin)
5:00 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
JeffMasters has created a new entry.
1541. 7544
4:59 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting gordydunnot:

Going for Invest at 2.


agree interested to see the models on this one may bring it into the gom then .....
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6874
1540. Dakster
4:57 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting gordydunnot:
DocND all I can say is "Why I never."


That is not what we heard... :)
Member Since: March 10, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 10628
1539. trHUrrIXC5MMX
4:52 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Any chances for Nadine to follow Gordon from here on out towards the Azores
Member Since: April 23, 2011 Posts: 104 Comments: 14873
1538. gordydunnot
4:52 PM GMT on September 15, 2012

Going for Invest at 2.
Member Since: August 18, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3113
1537. washingtonian115
4:51 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting will40:




12z GFS bringing Nadine back to the west towards end of the run
Dat trough o_0.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17593
1536. SLU
4:50 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
CARCAH, NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER, MIAMI, FL.
1145 AM EDT SAT 15 SEPTEMBER 2012
SUBJECT: TROPICAL CYCLONE PLAN OF THE DAY (TCPOD)
VALID 16/1100Z TO 17/1100Z SEPTEMBER 2012
TCPOD NUMBER.....12-119

I. ATLANTIC REQUIREMENTS
1. NEGATIVE RECONNAISSANCE REQUIREMENTS.
2. OUTLOOK FOR SUCCEEDING DAY: POSSIBLE LOW-LEVEL INVEST FOR 17/1800Z IN EASTERN CARIBBEAN NEAR 14.5N 64.0W.


Shows that the NHC's getting excited about this disturbance.
Member Since: July 13, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 5364
1535. 7544
4:43 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
CARCAH, NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER, MIAMI, FL.
1145 AM EDT SAT 15 SEPTEMBER 2012
SUBJECT: TROPICAL CYCLONE PLAN OF THE DAY (TCPOD)
VALID 16/1100Z TO 17/1100Z SEPTEMBER 2012
TCPOD NUMBER.....12-119

I. ATLANTIC REQUIREMENTS
1. NEGATIVE RECONNAISSANCE REQUIREMENTS.
2. OUTLOOK FOR SUCCEEDING DAY: POSSIBLE LOW-LEVEL INVEST FOR 17/1800Z IN EASTERN CARIBBEAN NEAR 14.5N 64.0W.


thanks maybe will be 92l after all heading west maybe a bump up to 30% on the next two imo
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6874
1534. DocNDswamp
4:43 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
LOL Gordy, I hear ya...
Member Since: September 21, 2005 Posts: 94 Comments: 4798
1533. gordydunnot
4:41 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
DocND all I can say is "Why I never."
Member Since: August 18, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3113
1532. will40
4:40 PM GMT on September 15, 2012




12z GFS bringing Nadine back to the west towards end of the run
Member Since: September 19, 2005 Posts: 2 Comments: 4266
1531. gordydunnot
4:39 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Looking at the satellite loops this morning there appears to be a lot of energy left in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean to disperse. Maybe an interesting end to Sept. and first half of Oct. The gulf kind of looks like it doesn't know where to spin up something first.
Member Since: August 18, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3113
1530. DocNDswamp
4:36 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Well, I'm too tired to strut my stuff, so will just barge in to comment - best wishes to folks in Okinawa over next several hours, Sanba sure evolved an impressive EWRC in sat loops since 0Z, reforming it's large eye...
Member Since: September 21, 2005 Posts: 94 Comments: 4798
1529. wxchaser97
4:35 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Latest ASCAT on Nadine
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
1528. GeoffreyWPB
4:34 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
CARCAH, NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER, MIAMI, FL.
1145 AM EDT SAT 15 SEPTEMBER 2012
SUBJECT: TROPICAL CYCLONE PLAN OF THE DAY (TCPOD)
VALID 16/1100Z TO 17/1100Z SEPTEMBER 2012
TCPOD NUMBER.....12-119

I. ATLANTIC REQUIREMENTS
1. NEGATIVE RECONNAISSANCE REQUIREMENTS.
2. OUTLOOK FOR SUCCEEDING DAY: POSSIBLE LOW-LEVEL INVEST FOR 17/1800Z IN EASTERN CARIBBEAN NEAR 14.5N 64.0W.
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11512
1527. etxwx
4:31 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Sanba Upddate #21 from Dave Ornauer
1:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 16, Japan time: Latest forecast wind timeliine from Kadena Air Base's 18th Wing Weather Flight. Expect upgrade to Tropical Cyclone Condition of Readiness 1-E around 2 a.m. or thereabouts, depending on wind speeds. Closest point of approach 14 miles east at 6 a.m.

-- Sustained 35-mph winds or greater, occurring now.
-- Sustained 40-mph winds or greater, occuring now.
-- Sustained 58-mph winds or greater, occuring now.
-- Maximum 127-mph sustained winds, 155-mph gusts, 4 a.m. Sunday.
-- Winds receding below 58 mph, 11 a.m. Sunday.
-- Winds receding below 40 mph, 2 p.m. Sunday.
-- Winds receding below 35 mph, 6 p.m. Sunday.
Member Since: September 4, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 1528
1526. Tropicsweatherpr
4:30 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
If anybody is wondering, the current Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) is 78.5 units. Michael contributed the most, at 16.5 units, while Joyce contributed the least amount, at 0.245 units. Nadine is currently in 7th place for the season, with 5.05 units.


Not bad considering it was not going to be that high as the experts predicted a near normal season and EPAC was going to get over 100 units but is at 70.
Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14752
1525. TropicalAnalystwx13
4:23 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
If anybody is wondering, the current Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) is 78.5 units. Michael contributed the most, at 16.5 units, while Joyce contributed the least amount, at 0.245 units. Nadine is currently in 7th place for the season, with 5.05 units.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32688
1523. 7544
4:23 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
Here come da pouch...Here come da pouch...



could be 92l before reaching the islands ??
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6874
1522. AussieStorm
4:22 PM GMT on September 15, 2012

Member Since: September 30, 2007 Posts: 9 Comments: 15962
1521. wxchaser97
4:21 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
My latest forecast for Nadine:

I will be gone at the UoM game for awhile so bye everyone.
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
1520. CaicosRetiredSailor
4:21 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Member Since: July 12, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6069
1519. gordydunnot
4:19 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Very appropriate Grothar, when your strange voices come out from the cane, or something like that.
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1518. GeoffreyWPB
4:18 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Here come da pouch...Here come da pouch...

Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11512
1517. AussieStorm
4:15 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
WOW



Time 00:00
Temperature: 26.4C
Precipitation: 1.5mm
Wind Direction: NE
Wind Speed: 17.9m/s
Humidity: 87%
Pressure: 989.0hPa
Member Since: September 30, 2007 Posts: 9 Comments: 15962
1516. etxwx
4:12 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Here's the Kadena AFB Facebook page for Sanba info

It's public so if you are a non-Facebook person like me, just hit the "close" button when the Facebook pop up tries to get you to join.
Member Since: September 4, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 1528
1515. CaribBoy
4:04 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
12Z GFS says the wave could bring more rain to the Leewards than it would appear right now. Good.
Member Since: October 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6453
1514. bluenosedave
4:00 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting plutorising:
sorry to interrupt a rooster fest, but is that blob off north carolina (oops, off new york) the one the models were talking about earlier this week? the one that might form a storm?


I'm looking at that, too. GFS forecast a couple of days ago that Nadine would split the trough and send this blob up towards Cape Breton Island. Had it down to 1004 mb. It's got some spin to it, but the water's not warm enough for a TC. Sub-TC, maybe.
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 368
1513. LargoFl
3:58 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 41582
1511. LargoFl
3:57 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 41582
1510. LargoFl
3:53 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 41582
1509. LargoFl
3:52 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 41582
1508. PalmBeachWeather
3:50 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting washingtonian115:
And I know a few bloggers who aggressively attack other members when they don't agree with them and use sly remarks :).
Exactly
Member Since: October 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 6000
1507. Skyepony (Mod)
3:50 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Fresh ASCAT of the wave coming toward the Leewards..

Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 208 Comments: 39041
1506. LargoFl
3:50 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 41582
1505. 7544
3:48 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting LargoFl:
....................oh boy, its gonna stall out over us next week..tons of rain coming guys


yep another wet week ahead
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6874
1504. washingtonian115
3:48 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting Neapolitan:
BTW, no, I didn't mean "barge", nor any other word; I meant "strut". That is, to walk with a pompous and affected air--something of which both males and females are capable. You know, as some do when they log into this forum. "I'm here," they loudly announced. "I don't care what you were yapping about before I arrived, but you all need to zip it now. We're all going to talk about what I want to talk about. Or else."

I know a few members like that. Who doesn't? ;-)
And I know a few bloggers who aggressively attack other members when they don't agree with them and use sly remarks :).
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17593
1503. PalmBeachWeather
3:47 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting PalmBeachWeather:
"Moves like Jagger"
Maroon 5
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1502. Skyepony (Mod)
3:47 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
TRMM pass of SANBA though the eye.. Click here for very large quicktime movie.

Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 208 Comments: 39041
1501. LargoFl
3:47 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
THIS HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK IS FOR WEST CENTRAL AND SOUTHWEST
FLORIDA.

.DAY ONE...TODAY AND TONIGHT.

...THUNDERSTORM IMPACT...
ISOLATED SHOWERS WILL BEGIN LATER THIS MORNING ACROSS INLAND
LOCATIONS AND MOVE WEST IN THE AFTERNOON...INCREASING TO
SCATTERED THUNDERSTORMS...WITH NUMEROUS STORMS ALONG THE COAST
FROM TAMPA TO FORT MYERS. THESE CONTINUE MOVING WEST OUT OVER THE
GULF AND DIMINISH TONIGHT. THE GREATEST THREATS WILL BE STRONG
WINDS.. DANGEROUS CLOUD TO GROUND LIGHTNING...AND HEAVY BUT BRIEF
RAINFALL WITH MINOR FLOODING POSSIBLE.

.DAYS TWO THROUGH SEVEN...SUNDAY THROUGH FRIDAY.

...THUNDERSTORM IMPACT...
SCATTERED TO NUMEROUS SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS WILL CONTINUE AS A
COOL FRONT MOVES INTO THE STATE AND STALLS ACROSS CENTRAL FLORIDA
MID-WEEK. THIS FRONT WEAKENS IN PLACE BY FRIDAY. THE PRIMARY
HAZARDS WILL BE STRONG WINDS...DANGEROUS CLOUD TO GROUND
LIGHTNING...AND HEAVY RAINFALL RESULTING IN MINOR FLOODING.

.SPOTTER INFORMATION STATEMENT...

SPOTTER ACTIVATION WILL NOT BE NEEDED TODAY.

$$
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 41582
1499. LargoFl
3:45 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
....................oh boy, its gonna stall out over us next week..tons of rain coming guys
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 41582
1498. wxwonder1
3:45 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
200mb Vorticity looks to be slowly increasing with the wave east of the Antilles.

1200 UTC:

http://tropic.ssec.wisc.edu/real-time/atlantic/wi nds/wg8vor1-1.GIF

Current 1500 UTC:

http://tropic.ssec.wisc.edu/real-time/atlantic/wi nds/wg8vor1.GIF
Member Since: September 18, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 103
1497. PalmBeachWeather
3:43 PM GMT on September 15, 2012
Quoting PensacolaDoug:




George Jefferson strutted best!
"Moves like Jagger"
Member Since: October 3, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 6000

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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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