Category 3 Typhoon Sanba hitting Okinawa

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 5:00 PM GMT on September 15, 2012

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The winds are rising and heavy rain is lashing Okinawa, Japan where Category 3 Typhoon Sanba is expected to make landfall early Sunday morning local time (early this afternoon U.S. EDT.) Radar loops show that the large 35-mile diameter eye of Sanba is on a track that will bring it across the southern part of Okinawa, and heavy rains and wind gusts of 59 mph and 66 mph have been reported at Naha Airport and Kadena Air Force Base, respectively, over the past few hours. Moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots has weakened Sanba below its Category 5 peak on Friday morning, and satellite loops show that Sanba is weakening, with the cloud tops warming and the eyewall getting eroded on the west side, but Sanba should be able to maintain Category 3 strength as it crosses Okinawa today. Sanba will continue to weaken as it encounters cooler waters and higher wind shear between Okinawa and South Korea Saturday night and Sunday, and is likely to be at Category 1 strength at landfall in South Korea near 18 UTC on Sunday.


Figure 1. Radar image of Typhoon Sanba approaching Okinawa. Image credit: Japan Meteorological Agency.

Sanba: the strongest tropical cyclone of 2012
The most powerful tropical cyclone of 2012 is Typhoon Sanba. Sanba formed as a tropical depression over the western Pacific Ocean on September 10. The storm rapidly strengthened from a Category 1 to a Category 5 storm over very warm waters of 30°C (86°F) in just 24 hours beginning on September 13, and became Category 5 Super Typhoon with 175 mph winds for an 18-hour period ending at 12 UTC Friday, September 14. Sanba is Earth's only Category 5 tropical cyclone so far in 2012; the planet had two such storms in 2011, both in the Western Pacific. The previous strongest tropical cyclone of 2012 was Super Typhoon Guchol, a Category 4 storm with top winds of 150 mph east of the Philippines in June. Sanba is the strongest typhoon in the Western Pacific since October 2010, when Super Typhoon Megi's sustained winds hit 180 mph.



FIgure 2. Super Typhoon Sanba at peak strength, as seen at 04:50 UTC September 13, 2012, by the MODIS instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite. At the time, Sanba was a Super Typhoon with sustained winds of 175 mph and gusts to 205 mph. The spectacular eye of Super Typhoon Sanba featured two counter-rotating eddies at the surface. Image credit: NASA.

Links for Sanba
Radar loop from Okinawa
Live traffic with audio and video of Typhoon Sanba approaching.is available from ustream.tv.
Current conditions from Naha Airport, Okinawa, Japan
Current conditions from Kadena Air Force Base, Okinawa, Japan

Atlantic tropical update
Hurricane Nadine is recurving to the northeast on a track that may bring the storm close to the Azores Islands in 4 - 5 days. Steering currents for Nadine are expected to collapse in about 5 days, and the storm will likely wander for many days in the Central Atlantic.

A tropical wave about 600 miles east of the Lesser Antilles Islands is moving west at 15 mph, and will spread heavy rain showers and gusty winds over the islands on Sunday. The wave is under a moderate 10 - 20 knots of wind shear, and has only a small amount of heavy thunderstorm activity, due to a large area of dry air surrounding the system. The amount of heavy thunderstorm activity has increased some this afternoon, though. The 12Z run of the NOGAPS model predicts the wave could approach tropical depression strength by Wednesday, when it will be near the Dominican Republic. However, none of the other reliable models develop the system, and the wave doesn't have much spin at present, as seen on an 11:14 am EDT ASCAT pass.. In their 2 pm EDT Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave the wave a 20% of developing into a tropical depression by Monday afternoon. A hurricane hunter aircraft is on call for Monday afternoon to investigate the storm, just in case.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:
http://hot-topic.co.nz/arctic-code-red-uncharted- territory/


... James Overland, reported in the Guardian:

These changes are happening much earlier than scientists thought, said James Overland, an oceanographer and researcher at the University of Washington.

“We’ve only had a little bit of global warming so far,” Overland said.

As the sea ice continues to decline, the jet stream will likely continue to slow more, and shift further north “bringing wild temperature swings and greater numbers of extreme events” in the future he said. “We’re in uncharted territory.”


etc...


Except that as the jet stream moves further north, it weakens. When it weakens, it's 'loops' meander further south, causing unusual weather.

We've had the wettest summer for 100 years here in the UK, due to being under the loops. They're usually further north.

In 2010, Russia and the Ukraine had their worst heat wave on record and Pakistan its worst floods. Unusual southerly position of the jet stream loops was blamed for both these events.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
I still don't think 92L will develop. Instability is very, very low over the Caribbean and it simply just won't allow thunderstorms to develop over 92L. I doubt anything more than a brief and disorganized Tropical Depression, if that. Absolutely none of the major global models develop 92L into a major system, though the intensity models may think it might, there are other factors that come into play that 92L simply does not have. It is a fast mover, no closed circulation and currently disorganized dealing with a lot of dry air. Simply not seeing development at this time, but will monitor it.



yep for right now 92L RIP
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
I still don't think 92L will develop. Instability is very, very low over the Caribbean and it simply just won't allow thunderstorms to develop over 92L. I doubt anything more than a brief and disorganized Tropical Depression, if that. Absolutely none of the major global models develop 92L into a major system, though the intensity models may think it might, there are other factors that come into play that 92L simply does not have. It is a fast mover, no closed circulation and currently disorganized dealing with a lot of dry air. Simply not seeing development at this time, but will monitor it.

I don't think it should develop but it could surprise people and develop out of nowhere.
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692. WunderAlertBot (Admin)
JeffMasters has created a new entry.
Quoting zicoille:
I completely think that the rain doesn't want to fall in the northern leewards islands...
Why 92L doesn't recurve? Are we going to stay without rain???
We wish all for a big system, that's right cariboy...


I do agree we badly need rain, and a decent TS would be so fine!! Though I don't think a Cat 3 or higher is a good idea lol :)

Also I really DON'T LIKE WHAT 92L IS DOING TO US. ALL THE RAINS SEEM TO BE FOR THE SAME ISLANDS AGAIN!!
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Quoting Grothar:


ALWAYS THE SAME!! VERY ANGRY MODE!!!
Member Since: October 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 5900
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6z NOGAPS:



0Z ECMWF:



It seems to me models are having trouble determining the exact timing of the series of troughs.
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
I still don't think 92L will develop. Instability is very, very low over the Caribbean and it simply just won't allow thunderstorms to develop over 92L. I doubt anything more than a brief and disorganized Tropical Depression, if that. Absolutely none of the major global models develop 92L into a major system, though the intensity models may think it might, there are other factors that come into play that 92L simply does not have. It is a fast mover, no closed circulation and currently disorganized dealing with a lot of dry air. Simply not seeing development at this time, but will monitor it.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23505
Quoting Skyepony:
wunderkid~ people were wondering where you were yesterday over this wave..

Looks promising on Precipitable Water.



yeah sorry I've been busy taking some classes and doing some military training and so now I am free for now and I am working right now off of my PS3 and so it is harder to type

I think 92L will become a true caribbean storm hey maybe even a cane "Maybe" anyway in terms of track the models speaks it for me I think this one will make it into the W caribbean and will curve into the GOM
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685. beell
Quoting wunderkidcayman:
hey guys I go on a break and come back and I find 92L about to enter the Caribbean Wow ok people give me a Sitrep on the curent situation please and thank you


14N 56W

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Meh....

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682. Skyepony (Mod)
Nadine
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ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
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680. Skyepony (Mod)
wunderkid~ people were wondering where you were yesterday over this wave..

Looks promising on Precipitable Water.

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679. Skyepony (Mod)
92L


Quoting zicoille:
I completely think that the rain doesn't want to fall in the northern leewards islands...
Why 92L doesn't recurve? Are we going to stay without rain???
We wish all for a big system, that's right cariboy...


This is gonna be tragic if you all get missed again. Nothing worse than extreme drought in a tropical setting. Out of all the 'canes, tornadoes that summer of '98 when everything burnt up was the worse.

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hey guys I go on a break and come back and I find 92L about to enter the Caribbean Wow ok people give me a Sitrep on the curent situation please and thank you
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677. Skyepony (Mod)
Looking at the zero hour model error most the models initialized horribly on 92L. Looking over both direction & intensity I might be inclined to throw my forecast toward the HWRF for the next day or so.
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676. etxwx
Good morning everyone. Hope everyone has a nice relaxing Sunday. Time for the morning newspaper reports. Unfortunately Sanba keeps on keepin' on...
Powerful typhoon approaches S. Korea
2012/09/16 11:19 KST

SEOUL/JEJU, South Korea, Sept. 16 (Yonhap) -- Thousands of ships took shelter in ports, ferry services were suspended and access to valleys and other risky areas was restricted on the southern island of Jeju as precautions Sunday as a powerful typhoon was approaching South Korea.

Packing strong winds of 48 meters per second, Typhoon Sanba was moving northward at a speed of 26 kilometers per hour from about 80 kilometers off the southern Japanese island of Okinawa as of Sunday morning, according to the Korean Meteorological Administration.

The massive storm is expected to reach about 70 kilometers off Jeju around 9 a.m. Monday before making landfall in the South Jeolla Province in South Korea's southwest. The typhoon is then expected to move over South Korea's mainland to reach about 90 kilometers from Seoul on Monday night, officials said.

Up to 400 millimeters of rain is expected before it moves out of South Korea, officials said. As the typhoon approached, Jeju and other southern regions were already receiving rain Sunday.

On Jeju, about 3,000 ships took shelter at ports around the island, ferry services linking Jeju and nearby islands were suspended, and Mount Halla and other areas considered dangerous in such a storm were declared off-limit as precautionary measures.

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I completely think that the rain doesn't want to fall in the northern leewards islands...
Why 92L doesn't recurve? Are we going to stay without rain???
We wish all for a big system, that's right cariboy...
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Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 68 Comments: 25093
And, like a couple others this year, it's passing through the Eastern Caribbean without a well defined center. Most likely we'll be waiting for a few days to see anything develop.

Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5020
Texas getting some bad weather too...........
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Quoting ProgressivePulse:



That's a pretty clear picture there Gro. Looks like Jeanne's models back in 04, lol.


She was a twister for sure.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 68 Comments: 25093
Quoting unknowncomic:
This area of tepid water near Cuba is growing.



*hums Christmassy*
Let it grow, let it grow, let it grow... Would give us some nice cool water if it did.

Interesting size of that colder area where Isaac went through.
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Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 68 Comments: 25093
boy rainfall totals for the year ought to be amazing..........................especially south florida
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Quoting Dakster:
Is that hook pattern present? The one where the storm. Passes between the Yucatan and western Cuba and smacks into Florida on its way back out across the Atlantic?


With High Pressure building in the Bahama's and regular troughs coming down, it's a distinct possibility. Assuming it develops, that is. Models aren't currently impressed however. Clear as Mud ATM.

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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

Agreed. If this fails to develop though, it should go into Mexico.


Gulf looks very hostile
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Quoting Grothar:
GFS on Nadine




That's a pretty clear picture there Gro. Looks like Jeanne's models back in 04, lol.
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Quoting Dakster:
Is that hook pattern present? The one where the storm. Passes between the Yucatan and western Cuba and smacks into Florida on its way back out across the Atlantic?



Is that an academic enquiry or a wishcast?
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Is that hook pattern present? The one where the storm. Passes between the Yucatan and western Cuba and smacks into Florida on its way back out across the Atlantic?
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Quoting LargoFl:
anyone notice the wave behind 92L?..

Looks like it's gonna crash into South America.
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anyone notice the wave behind 92L??.......
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Quoting hurricane23:


Actually if anyone has a chance to see any impacts from this system in the conus it would be florida as there will be some opportunity for this to be recurved northeastward by a trof of low pressure. Right now the enviroment remains quite hostile but down the road in west carib it may have a shot.

Agreed. If this fails to develop though, it should go into Mexico.
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Quoting hurricane23:


Actually if anyone has a chance to see any impacts from this system in the conus it would be florida as there will be some opportunity for this to be recurved northeastward by a trof of low pressure. Right now the enviroment remains quite hostile but down the road in west carib it may have a shot.
yeah adding to our rainfall totals along with that cold front thats supposed to stall over central florida this coming week, going to be an interesting week for sure, hope not too much flooding
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Radar out of South Korea:

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Quoting LargoFl:
so far so good,92L not coming to florida,but watching it..


Actually if anyone has a chance to see any impacts from this system in the conus it would be florida as there will be some opportunity for this to be recurved northeastward by a trof of low pressure. Right now the enviroment remains quite hostile but down the road in west carib it may have a shot.
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A weak and undeveloped 92L will just continue west into Mexico.

But if it were to develop into a tropical system, it would most likely be pulled northward.

I don't wish a storm on anyone, but I kind of want 92L to develop. A local meteorologist completely dismissed 92L because of dry air and wind shear. He basically said "92L is no worry to us."

He's most likely right, but I hate it when meteorologists act like they have a crystal ball and they can see the future (100% for sure).
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Quoting LargoFl:
so far so good,92L not coming to florida,but watching it..
I hope it stays away. Isaac was enough for this year.
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fgcrgsREugI&featur e=youtube_gdata_player

James Reynolds
@typhoonfury
Footage now up I shot of the chaos in Higashi, Okinawa as #typhoon #Sanba slammed ashore - youtu.be/fgcrgsREugI
4 hours ago via TweetDeck
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Quoting aislinnpaps:
I hope the pilot is all right.
yes me too
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so far so good,92L not coming to florida,but watching it..
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I hope the pilot is all right.
Member Since: August 22, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 3115
Quoting aislinnpaps:


Pasco County is in Florida?

Morning, everyone.
yes
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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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