Category 5 Super Typhoon Bopha bearing down on the Philippines

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:41 PM GMT on December 03, 2012

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Extremely dangerous Typhoon Bopha is bearing down on the Philippine island of Mindanao as a Category 5 storm with 160 mph winds. Bopha completed an eyewall replacement cycle on Sunday and has been steadily intensifying today, and will make landfall on Mindanao in the early morning on Tuesday local time. Mindanao rarely gets hit by typhoons, since the island is too close to the Equator, and the infrastructure of Mindanao is not prepared to handle heavy typhoon rains as well as the more typhoon-prone northern islands. Bopha is potentially a catastrophic storm for Mindanao. The typhoon is following a similar track to last year's Tropical Storm Washi, which hit Mindanao on December 16, 2011 with 60 mph winds and torrential rains. Washi triggered devastating flooding that killed 1268 people. Washi was merely a tropical storm, and Bopha is likely to hit at Category 4 or 5 strength, making it the strongest typhoon ever recorded in Mindanao.


Figure 1. Super Typhoon Bopha at 01:45 UTC on December 2, 2012. At the time, Bopha had top sustained winds of 150 mph, as was just below its peak intensity of 155 mph, which it reached from 06 - 12 UTC on December 2. Image credit: NASA.

Bopha: the 2nd most southerly typhoon on record
Bopha became a tropical depression unusually close to the Equator, at 3.6°N latitude. Tropical cyclones rarely form so close to the Equator, because they cannot leverage the Earth's rotation to get themselves spinning. According to hurricane expert Dr. Paul Roundy of SUNY Albany, Bopha got its spin from a large-scale atmospheric wave called a mixed Rossby gravity wave. Because of the lack of atmospheric spin so close to the Equator, it took Bopha over four days to intensify into a typhoon, and it stayed a relatively small storm. Bopha became the 2nd most southerly typhoon ever recorded in the Western Pacific at 06 GMT on November 30, when the storm was at 3.8°N latitude. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center lists Typhoon Vamei of 2001 as the most southerly typhoon on record, at 1.5°N. However, other meteorological agencies do not credit Vamei with reaching typhoon strength, so this record is disputed. The previous most southerly typhoon was Typhoon Kate of 14 - 25 October 1970, which reached typhoon intensity at 4.3°N, 137.4°E. Bopha continued intensifying over the weekend, becoming the second most southerly super typhoon ever recorded (150 mph winds) at 00 GMT on December 1, when it was at 6.1°N latitude. The record most southerly super typhoon was Kate, which reached super typhoon intensity at 6.0°N, 126.3°E. Kate struck the Philippine island of Mindanao as a Category 4 storm, killing 631 people. Bopha further intensified into a Category 5 typhoon on Monday at 7.4°N latitude, becoming the second most southerly Category 5 typhoon on record, next to Typhoon Louise of 1964, which was a Category 5 storm at 7.3°N. According to NOAA's Coastal Services Center, there have been only 4 previous typhoons of at least Category 4 strength to track within 200 nautical miles of Mindanao Island, dating back to 1945: Mike ("Ruping" ) in 1990, Ike ("Nitang") in 1984, Kate ("Titang") in 1970, and Louise ("Ining" ) in 1964.


Figure 2. Tracks of all Category 4 typhoons to affect the southern Philippine Island of Mindanao since 1945. Image credit: NOAA Coastal Services Center.

The closest a tropical cyclone has ever been to the Equator is 0.7°N, by Tropical Cyclone Agni in the North Indian Ocean in November 2004. Agni got counter-clockwise spin from the presence of the summer monsoon circulation in the Indian Ocean. The closest a Western Pacific tropical cyclone has been to the Equator is 1.4°N latitude, by Tropical Storm Vamei on December 27, 2001. Vamei hit Singapore after Christmas in 2001, at a latitude of 1.5°N.


Figure 3. This MET-5 visible satellite image taken at 0400 UTC November 28, 2004, shows Agni as a developing tropical storm just north of the Equator in the Indian Ocean. Image credit: Navy Research Lab, Monterey.

Jeff Masters

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Weakening Flag: ON
Member Since: October 25, 2008 Posts: 63 Comments: 6716
236. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Quoting thunderbug91:
What is the EST forecast time for Bopha's landfall? I know its 4-6 AM Manila time but what is it for our time?


It's 4:00 AM PhST right now
Member Since: May 24, 2006 Posts: 52 Comments: 46998
Sorry, enough SEC, especially Saban, pullin' for ND, especially since I'm part Eyre. Odds against them though. Guess that wind has really picked up since lunch - no wonder Sherwood said 80 possible, S wind 31, gust to 40! I think record today was 76, 75 set it yesterday.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
New NOAA ADT numbers.

2012DEC03 193000 7.5 884.0/ 5.0 /155.0 7.2 7.0 7.0 NO LIMIT ON FLG -15.02 -78.95 EYE 13 IR 7.63 -126.80 COMBO


Not sure how they know the pressure and wind is still steady, in spite of the T numbers coming down. Maybe the system just doesn't work for storms interacting with high terrain.

Rapid weakening flag is ...flagged actually (edited), but eye temperature is dropping even more, so the land interaction must be taking a toll now.

13 mile radius of maximum winds. Wow.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Alabama -9.5 on the line right now
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What is the EST forecast time for Bopha's landfall? I know its 4-6 AM Manila time but what is it for our time?
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All this warmth early is making me lose hope for this up coming winter.Reminds me of last winter where all the months(I think except for one) were well above average.
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Eye is definitely clouding up as it approaches the coast. It doesn't matter at this point though, landfall is imminent, maybe it'll weaken from 140kts to 125kts but that really doesn't make a difference.

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Quoting TomballTXPride:



As long as Fighting Irish loses.



Guaranteed they will lol
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Quoting TomballTXPride:


Sucks!!



Not if ur a BAMA fan :)
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NWS Atlanta ‏@NWSAtlanta
Looks like Atlanta tied the all time record high temp of 74 deg for today that was set back in 1982. The record was tied at 2:04pm.

im outa here.
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Quoting TomballTXPride:



Glad you beat them.

Oh, I'm glad!!



BAMA won
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting RTSplayer:
Can we get 8 consecutive SEC national title teams?


Oh yeah, forgot to ask.

When was the last time a team won the national title and repeated, and wasn't later found to be part of a coaching or recruiting scandal?


Not that I'm saying anything's going on this year, it's just I don't remember it ever happening. USC was BS and didn't deserve the title they got anyway, since they didn't play anybody, and they cheated to get that, so they don't count.

Was it Miami or was it Nebraska? I don't remember...


We'd better get our 8 straight.....
And UGA falls out of BCS bowls with their loss and it took a lot of negotiation form the SEC to get us into the Capital One Bowl with horrible Nebraska, (they wanted texas a&m) and so we almost fell to playing somebody on kent state's level in the Nothing Bowl....
This BCS 2 teams per conference sucks.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting HadesGodWyvern:


some type of flower
Thank you young man for answering my question.

I can't see Txtombell no more.
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Google Maps @googlemaps 6m

New Typhoon Pablo (Bopha) crisis map features storm warnings, shelter locations and the latest weather info: goo.gl/OObQO


http://google.org/crisismap/2012-pablo
Member Since: July 12, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6069
Can we get 8 consecutive SEC national title teams?


Oh yeah, forgot to ask.

When was the last time a team won the national title and repeated, and wasn't later found to be part of a coaching or recruiting scandal?


Not that I'm saying anything's going on this year, it's just I don't remember it ever happening. USC was BS and didn't deserve the title they got anyway, since they didn't play anybody, and they cheated to get that, so they don't count.

Was it Miami or was it Nebraska? I don't remember...
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Quoting TomballTXPride:



Glad you beat them.

Oh, I'm glad!!




I'm a Georgia fan and we lost.
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Hopefully the mountains will start to disrupt Bopha. The island has many peaks over 6000 ft and some in excess of 9000 ft. Probably not good for the rainfall potential though
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Quoting thunderbug91:

Roll Tide



Just beat Notre Dame.....
That was a horrible loss for Georgia...
So close
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210. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Quoting washingtonian115:
Does anyone know what a Bopah is?.


some type of flower
Member Since: May 24, 2006 Posts: 52 Comments: 46998
The record high temp for today in Atlanta is 74 deg set in 1982. At 2pm today Atlanta's temp was at 73 deg...Its still possible...cloud cover in the area though.
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206. VR46L
Quoting StormPro:

Amazing


Love the avi man .
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Quoting txjac:


Gotta agree with you washingtonian ...sitting here in the low 80's and not liking it one bit


75 here in NOLA...and sticky
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Quoting FunnelVortex:


Its a typhoon!
Oh geez no telling Sherlock....I'm talking about the meaning of the name.

TxTombell I've had enough.
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202. txjac
Quoting washingtonian115:
It is to warm today for my taste.Hate it to bits and peices.


Gotta agree with you washingtonian ...sitting here in the low 80's and not liking it one bit
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting washingtonian115:
Does anyone know what a Bopah is?.


Its a typhoon!
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Quoting FunnelVortex:


LOL, your avatar is Bopha!
I've been having the same back lite storm since I shot it in Arkansas back in 2010...thought I would change it up a little
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Does anyone know what a Bopah is?.
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Quoting TomballTXPride:
Why would anyone follow Snooki???

LMAO


Who is Snooki?
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Quoting TomballTXPride:
Nea. You have a fan club. And a following.


Does he really have THAT big of an ego?
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I'm wondering if we get some sort of rebound effect.

Sometimes category 4 and 5 eye walls are reluctant to move directly onto the land, and bounce off on first contact, similar to the "island effect".
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Quoting Slamguitar:


I don't even want a good game. I wanna see ND completely demoralized and shocked by a Bama blowout.

amen
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Quoting StormPro:

Amazing


LOL, your avatar is Bopha!
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Daylight approaching the Philippines.
Member Since: October 25, 2008 Posts: 63 Comments: 6716
Quoting RTSplayer:


Well, Notre Dame has a better coach than they had before, but last time they played LSU in a bowl game they got rolled, and since Alabama is probably much better this year than LSU was that year, I figure the number isn't that far-fetched.
Naw. Its a very realistic score. Just ask Auburn...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MAweatherboy1:
Still not even at 8N:


Amazing
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Quoting thunderbug91:

Now i like THAT!


Well, Notre Dame has a better coach than they had before, but last time they played LSU in a bowl game they got rolled, and since Alabama is probably much better this year than LSU was that year, I figure the number isn't that far-fetched.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520

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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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