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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Good agreement on the intensity models.


Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
Quoting NCHurricane2009:
http://www.ssd.noaa.gov/PS/TROP/floaters/92L/flas h-vis-long.html

My favorite view of 92L...and I would click on HDW-H (to view the upper winds). It seems the persistent flare of thunderstorms is coincident with the maximum of upper divergence...see how the flare is right where the HDW-H vectors are splitting? I suppose a 2nd surface low could form under that maximum of upper divergence....but I don't see that yet...

And moreover...I see a swirl heading quickly westward toward the Lesser Antilles...but a naked swirl. I suppose this is where 92L itself is located....

I still think that main area of convection is either stationary or retrograding slightly east. It's almost like 92L is trying to feel out the territory before deciding what to do next.
Member Since: October 2, 2004 Posts: 0 Comments: 16260
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
Someone mentioned the winter of 09-10 as a analog.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
Quoting NCHurricane2009:

I don't know where the suggested WNW or NW motion is coming from? In all sat loops...I see a swirl heading rapidly west...anyone else see it (approaching 57W-14N)?


it's a mid level swirl left by the convection
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting popartpete:
Then is it too early to say, "Heberts Box"? (Know colloquially as "Herbert's Box")


That's better. :) I never use that term. It always sounded silly to me.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
Quoting sar2401:

You do realize that, if 92L develops far enough north to affect PR, you could be dealing with a hurricane, not a little rain storm, right? Be careful what you wish for.

I don't know where the suggested WNW or NW motion is coming from? In all sat loops...I see a swirl heading rapidly west...anyone else see it (approaching 57W-14N)?
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 524 Comments: 3699
Quoting sar2401:

The Euro looks more reasonable in that the low stays further north. It also doesn't show that ridiculous low off California.
Lol..It looked like a tropical storm..:)
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21704
Quoting sar2401:

You do realize that, if 92L develops far enough north to affect PR, you could be dealing with a hurricane, not a little rain storm, right? Be careful what you wish for.


nah I really don"t think it will be that strong. It's looking ugly at this time..
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Well it is cool outside right now and certainly feels like fall :).Its coming early the trees are telling us!.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
Quoting sar2401:

I swear, the GFS has really gone haywire. There's no way a deep low will be off San Francisco in 8.5 days without a lot more upper air support than the GFS depicts. We will have a strong cold front here in AL by Tuesday night and that's going to cool things down, with a nice high pressure ridge behind it. Hard to see such a monster trough developing five days later.
Lol..Thats why I had to put weird in there. I believe we are in for some unusual weather this Fall and Winter. The GEM Northern Hemisphere..168.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21704
I'm sure we'll hear about Hebert.
Member Since: August 2, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2084
Quoting CaribBoy:
92 HOLD ON WE NEED YOU HERE

You do realize that, if 92L develops far enough north to affect PR, you could be dealing with a hurricane, not a little rain storm, right? Be careful what you wish for.
Member Since: October 2, 2004 Posts: 0 Comments: 16260
http://www.ssd.noaa.gov/PS/TROP/floaters/92L/flas h-vis-long.html

My favorite view of 92L...and I would click on HDW-H (to view the upper winds). It seems the persistent flare of thunderstorms is coincident with the maximum of upper divergence...see how the flare is right where the HDW-H vectors are splitting? I suppose a 2nd surface low could form under that maximum of upper divergence....but I don't see that yet...

And moreover...I see a swirl heading quickly westward toward the Lesser Antilles...but a naked swirl. I suppose this is where 92L itself is located....
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 524 Comments: 3699
Quoting popartpete:
Then is it too early to say, "Heberts Box"? (Know colloquially as "Herbert's Box")

Yes, until the storm can get to at least 15N.
Member Since: October 2, 2004 Posts: 0 Comments: 16260
92 HOLD ON WE NEED YOU HERE
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Quoting hydrus:
True, but the models have been consistent with a large trough with Arctic air coming down into the U.S...Even the trusty Euro indicates a deep trough..

The Euro looks more reasonable in that the low stays further north. It also doesn't show that ridiculous low off California.
Member Since: October 2, 2004 Posts: 0 Comments: 16260
Quoting Grothar:



Models are trending to the North
Then is it too early to say, "Heberts Box"? (Know colloquially as "Herbert's Box")
Member Since: July 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 429
Hey! I just noticed.I think 92L was the storm the models were showing about a week ago slamming into the islands as a tropical storm while what is now Nadine curved out to sea. But they dropped it.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
Quoting Grothar:


Yes, it has a good chance. And I think it will be a west mover for the most part, but more like over the Greater Antilles or North of the Greater Antilles.

If that area of convection can start moving toward 15N, then I agree. If not, a west track for 92L will be a killer. If it does manage to move north, especially to about 16N, then we may have a real storm on our hands.
Member Since: October 2, 2004 Posts: 0 Comments: 16260
Quoting washingtonian115:
If dry air wasn't a problem I would be on board with development.Now I'm sketchy....


I'm not talking "monster" quite yet.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
Quoting Civicane49:
Post 342. Looks like some ensemble members are on board with development.
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
Quoting hydrus:
This is worth a look. Check out the huge trough and the weird storm that approaches California..Link

I swear, the GFS has really gone haywire. There's no way a deep low will be off San Francisco in 8.5 days without a lot more upper air support than the GFS depicts. We will have a strong cold front here in AL by Tuesday night and that's going to cool things down, with a nice high pressure ridge behind it. Hard to see such a monster trough developing five days later.
Member Since: October 2, 2004 Posts: 0 Comments: 16260
Quoting NCHurricane2009:

But that's 174 hrs out...I suppose reasonable but not 100% trustworthy...
True, but the models have been consistent with a large trough with Arctic air coming down into the U.S...Even the trusty Euro indicates a deep trough..
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21704
Quoting Grothar:


Yes, it has a good chance. And I think it will be a west mover for the most part, but more like over the Greater Antilles or North of the Greater Antilles.
If dry air wasn't a problem I would be on board with development.Now I'm sketchy....
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
typhoonfury
@typhoonfury

My shelter during #Sanba, 10m from shore, just high enough from the surge! Rental car rescued at last min pic.twitter.com/zpisC65h

24 minutes ago via Twitter
Member Since: July 12, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6064
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
Quoting hydrus:
If this pattern persists, a potent Nor,Easter would be almost a certainty. Notice the short wave at the bottom of the trough...
Yeah coming right for meh.Some of my local mets think this could be the beginning of a more colder pattern that will persists through the winter and fall.I hope its true as a 011-012 winter would drive me nutty!!'
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
366. BDAwx
this reporting site that went through the eyewall of Sanba recorded a peak gust to 55.3m/s (about 124mph)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting washingtonian115:
Gro do you think this will develop?


Yes, it has a good chance. And I think it will be a west mover for the most part, but more like over the Greater Antilles or North of the Greater Antilles.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
Quoting Thing342:
That's better than it ever has looked.
No is not
Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1942
363. SLU
Quoting Gearsts:
Isn't that were the center is?


Not sure if I agree with LATCUR 13.3N LONCUR 54.3W. They probably went with continuity until solid proff arrives....
Member Since: July 13, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 5352
Quoting washingtonian115:
I give 92L a small chance of ever developing....I mentioned T.D 7/Helene analog.

It looks to me like the main area of convection is nearly stationary at about 13N while all the blowoff from the convection is getting sucked north into Nadine's track. This gives the illusion of movement when the convection seems to be going nowhere. I suspect the convection is over just right amount of high SST's and decent instability to keep the convection going, and it's not going to move until it gets better conditions or finally gets weakened. Like I've said, the storm has to start moving north within 24 hours or it's highly unlikely to develop.
Member Since: October 2, 2004 Posts: 0 Comments: 16260
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
Quoting hydrus:
Deep trough. I would bet there will be some strong thunderstorms associated with it...

But that's 174 hrs out...I suppose reasonable but not 100% trustworthy...
Member Since: September 15, 2009 Posts: 524 Comments: 3699
Quoting washingtonian115:
If this was January or February I would be very excited as snow would likely result from the pattern.
If this pattern persists, a potent Nor,Easter would be almost a certainty. Notice the short wave at the bottom of the trough...
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21704
Quoting Grothar:



Models are trending to the North
Gro do you think this will develop?
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
Quoting MAweatherboy1:
Nadine's probably barely clinging to hurricane status right now, if it has it at all.

That's better than it ever has looked.
Member Since: August 1, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 441
Quoting popartpete:
Is it too early to say, "Models are trending to the north"?



Models are trending to the North
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
Deep trough. I would bet there will be some strong thunderstorms associated with it...
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21704
Quoting hydrus:
This is worth a look. Check out the huge trough and the weird storm that approaches California..Link
If this was January or February I would be very excited as snow would likely result from the pattern.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
352. hamla
Quoting sar2401:

I wondered how bad t must have been for you when I read Bay St. Louis. Sounds pretty bad. :( Nothing worse than losing all that time and money you put into the shack and antennas. There's still an HF hurricane net on 14.325 and 3.950 that opens when a hurricane is within 300 miles of landfall. The NWS also uses a lot of digital modes like Echolink to communicate with hams in the affected area. I was a net control station during Katrina since I was far enough inland not be directly affected. That was a tough and heartbreaking 24 hours.
yes it was bad.if u want go to qrz and u can send me a email.73 for now.nice 2 meet a fellowham
rick
n1rg
Member Since: August 29, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 167
351. Grothar
12:28 AM GMT on September 16, 2012
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26802
350. CaicosRetiredSailor
12:28 AM GMT on September 16, 2012
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Commander-Fleet-Act ivities-Okinawa/111587702192852
Member Since: July 12, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6064
349. hydrus
12:27 AM GMT on September 16, 2012
This is worth a look. Check out the huge trough and the weird storm that approaches California..Link
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21704
348. washingtonian115
12:27 AM GMT on September 16, 2012
Where is Wunderkidcayman?.Doesn't he know a potential storm is headed for him?.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17471
347. Gearsts
12:27 AM GMT on September 16, 2012
Quoting SLU:
Could the center of 92L be reforming further east near 13n 51w within the deep convection?

Interesting to note that this system is already more potent than most of the dynamical models initialise it as. It could provide the surprise of the season.

Isn't that were the center is?
Member Since: August 2, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1942
346. Civicane49
12:25 AM GMT on September 16, 2012
Hurricane Nadine:

Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
345. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
12:25 AM GMT on September 16, 2012
934

WHXX01 KWBC 160010

CHGHUR

TROPICAL CYCLONE GUIDANCE MESSAGE

NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL

0010 UTC SUN SEP 16 2012



DISCLAIMER...NUMERICAL MODELS ARE SUBJECT TO LARGE ERRORS.

PLEASE REFER TO NHC OFFICIAL FORECASTS FOR TROPICAL CYCLONE

AND SUBTROPICAL CYCLONE INFORMATION.



ATLANTIC OBJECTIVE AIDS FOR



DISTURBANCE INVEST (AL922012) 20120916 0000 UTC



...00 HRS... ...12 HRS... ...24 HRS. .. ...36 HRS...

120916 0000 120916 1200 120917 0000 120917 1200



LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON

BAMS 13.3N 54.3W 13.9N 56.0W 14.5N 57.4W 14.9N 59.1W

BAMD 13.3N 54.3W 14.0N 57.3W 14.8N 60.0W 15.4N 62.4W

BAMM 13.3N 54.3W 14.0N 56.6W 14.7N 58.7W 15.3N 60.9W

LBAR 13.3N 54.3W 14.2N 56.8W 15.2N 59.1W 16.1N 61.1W

SHIP 25KTS 29KTS 36KTS 45KTS

DSHP 25KTS 29KTS 36KTS 45KTS



...48 HRS... ...72 HRS... ...96 HRS. .. ..120 HRS...

120918 0000 120919 0000 120920 0000 120921 0000



LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON

BAMS 15.5N 60.9W 16.4N 65.5W 17.6N 70.4W 18.7N 75.2W

BAMD 15.9N 64.7W 16.9N 69.5W 18.4N 73.9W 19.9N 76.9W

BAMM 15.8N 63.1W 16.7N 67.9W 18.0N 73.0W 19.4N 77.1W

LBAR 17.1N 62.9W 18.6N 66.6W 20.2N 70.5W 21.6N 73.3W

SHIP 57KTS 77KTS 89KTS 97KTS

DSHP 57KTS 77KTS 89KTS 92KTS



...INITIAL CONDITIONS...

LATCUR = 13.3N LONCUR = 54.3W DIRCUR = 285DEG SPDCUR = 12KT

LATM12 = 12.7N LONM12 = 51.8W DIRM12 = 282DEG SPDM12 = 12KT

LATM24 = 12.3N LONM24 = 49.5W

WNDCUR = 25KT RMAXWD = 80NM WNDM12 = 25KT

CENPRS = 1010MB OUTPRS = 1012MB OUTRAD = 90NM SDEPTH = S

RD34NE = 0NM RD34SE = 0NM RD34SW = 0NM RD34NW = 0NM



$$

NNNN
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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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