Tropical Storm Chantal: a Likely Harbinger of an Active Atlantic Hurricane Season

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:02 PM GMT on July 08, 2013

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Tropical Storm Chantal is speeding westwards at 26 mph towards a Tuesday encounter with the Lesser Antilles Islands. Satellite loops show that Chantal has plenty of spin, with several well-developed low-level spiral bands that have gradually increased their heavy thunderstorm activity this morning. However, Chantal is fighting dry air associated with the Saharan Air Layer (SAL). The heavy thunderstorm activity near Chantal's center is rather thin, and there are virtually no heavy thunderstorms on the storm's north side, where upper-level northwesterly winds are creating light to moderate wind shear of 5 - 15 knots, and driving dry air into the storm. This dry air is readily apparent on water vapor satellite loops. Ocean temperatures are fairly warm, though, at 27.5 - 28°C. There have not been any hurricane hunter missions into Chantal yet, but an Air Force hurricane hunter aircraft deployed to St. Croix on Sunday, and is scheduled to investigate Chantal on Monday afternoon.


Figure 1. MODIS image of Chantal taken at approximately 10 am EDT Monday, July 8, 2013. At the time, Chantal had top winds of 45 mph. Image credit: NASA.


Figure 2. U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Levi Denham, a WC-130J Hercules aircraft weather reconnaissance loadmaster assigned to the 53rd Reconnaissance Squadron (the Hurricane Hunters), performs pre-engine start-up inspections in St. Croix, Virgin Islands, on Sept. 16, 2010. DoD photo by Staff Sgt. Manuel J. Martinez, U.S. Air Force. Thanks go to wunderground member Patrap for pointing out this photo.

Forecast for Chantal
The 8 am EDT Monday forecast from the SHIPS model predicts that Chantal will experience low to moderate shear through Tuesday afternoon as it heads west-northwest at 25 mph towards Hispaniola. With ocean temperatures expected to warm to 28°C during that time, Chantal has the potential to intensify to a 65 mph tropical storm before hitting Hispaniola. Working against intensification will be the fast forward speed of the storm--tropical storms moving faster than 20 mph in the deep tropics usually have trouble intensifying. In addition, the Eastern Caribbean is an area where the trade winds accelerate, helping drive sinking air that discourages tropical storm intensification. Dry air will also slow down the intensification process, and I don't see Chantal making it to hurricane strength before interacting with the mountains of Hispaniola and/or Cuba on Tuesday night and Wednesday. This interaction may be able to destroy the storm, since wind shear is also expected to rise to the high range, 20 - 30 knots, Tuesday night through Thursday. Chantal has the potential to cause big problems for Haiti, which is highly vulnerable to flash flooding due to the lack of vegetation on the deforested mountains. However, there is a lot of dry air to the west of Chantal, which may act to keep rainfall totals in Haiti down to a manageable 2 - 4". Over 300,000 people are still homeless and living in makeshift tent camps in Haiti, three years after the great 2010 earthquake.

Once Chantal crosses Hispaniola and enters the Bahamas late this week, the trough of low pressure pulling the storm to the northwest is expected to lift out. It is unclear at this point whether or not this trough will be strong enough to pull Chantal out to sea, or whether the storm might be forced back to the northwest into the U.S. East Coast by high pressure building in.


Figure 3. There have been only thirteen tropical depressions or tropical storms that have formed July 15 or earlier that have passed through the Lesser Antilles since 1851, an average of one such tropical cyclone every thirteen years. Note that two of these storms, Dennis and Emily, occurred during the notorious Hurricane Season of 2005. There were five other pre-July 16 storms that formed east of the Lesser Antilles Islands, but did not pass through the islands (Bertha of 2009, Barry of 1989, and unnamed tropical depressions in 1967, 1978, and 2001.) Image credit: NOAA's Historical Hurricane Tracks website.

Chantal: an uncommon early-season Cape Verde-type tropical storm
Formation of a tropical storm east of the Lesser Antilles Islands in early July from an African tropical wave is an uncommon occurrence. Since Atlantic hurricane records began in 1851, there have been only thirteen tropical depressions or tropical storms that have formed July 15 or earlier that have passed through the Lesser Antilles, an average of one early-season tropical cyclone every thirteen years. Note that two of these storms, Dennis and Emily, occurred during the notorious Hurricane Season of 2005. There were five other pre-July 16 storms that formed east of the Lesser Antilles Islands, but did not pass through the islands (Bertha of 2009, Barry of 1989, and tropical depressions in 1967, 1978, and 2001 that did not become named storms.)

Chantal: a likely harbinger of an active Atlantic hurricane season
Chantal's formation on July 8 is an usually early date for formation of the season's third storm, which usually occurs on August 13. A large number of early-season named storms is not necessarily a harbinger of an active season, unless one or more of these storms form in the deep tropics, south of 23.5°N. According to Phil Klotzbach and Bill Gray, leaders of Colorado State's seasonal hurricane forecasting team,

"Most years do not have named storm formations in June and July in the tropical Atlantic (south of 23.5°N); however, if tropical formations do occur, it indicates that a very active hurricane season is likely. For example, the seven years with the most named storm days in the deep tropics in June and July (since 1949) are 1966, 1969, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2005, and 2008. All seven of these seasons were very active. When storms form in the deep tropics in the early part of the hurricane season, it indicates that conditions are already very favorable for TC development. In general, the start of the hurricane season is restricted by thermodynamics (warm SSTs, unstable lapse rates), and therefore deep tropical activity early in the hurricane season implies that the thermodynamics are already quite favorable for tropical cyclone (TC) development."

Two of this season's three storms have formed in the deep tropics--Tropical Storm Barry, which formed in the Gulf of Mexico's Bay of Campeche at a latitude of 19.6°N, and now Tropical Storm Chantal, which formed at a latitude of 9.8°N. With recent runs of the GFS model predicting formation of yet another tropical storm southwest of the Cape Verde Islands early next week, it appears that the Atlantic is primed for an active hurricane season in 2013.

Jeff Masters

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if the next run of models has the left turn to florida, the NHCwill start bending Chantals track that way IMO.
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Gfs 276hr
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Gfs 00Z
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Quoting 2973. whitewabit:


Don't know if they can help you but its worth giving it a try ..

If I remember right .. you had several blogs and many comments ..


I think I've had a few. Was thinking about doing another one soon anyway.
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Quoting 2974. emguy:


Hi HHJoe,

I'm glad you are here too. Thank you for your comment. I agree, busy season ahead. Personal life has been very busy and has limited my time here, but I hope to be on board somewhat regularly with this likely active season ahead. I hope you are too! I'm glad to hear from you, stay safe this season.


Looking forward to your posts....take care!
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Quoting 2976. jeffreeysweetypie:
i still say chantal wont hit florida at all and will stay off shore and of east coast completlely and probabaly hook out to sea by monday.... the track since last night already shows it more off the florida coast on sunday when yesterday it showed it turning into the coast of florida on saturday


Don't know where you are coming from. Bermuda high is to build into NC and force it NW into the SE coast.

Member Since: September 2, 2006 Posts: 110 Comments: 6814
Quoting 2968. wunderkidcayman:
new surface map shows a new high pressure forming in the NE GOM this is to add to the high over SE US and a strong high over Bermuda
\\ya think Chantal has her sights on the GOM?
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2974. emguy
Quoting 2963. HurricaneHunterJoe:
Hi emguy!

Always like your posts for all the good info ya put out....glad to see ya back once again....looks like it's to be a very busy summer/fall in the tropics.


Hi HHJoe,

I'm glad you are here too. Thank you for your comment. I agree, busy season ahead. Personal life has been very busy and has limited my time here, but I hope to be on board somewhat regularly with this likely active season ahead. I hope you are too! I'm glad to hear from you, stay safe this season.
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2973. whitewabit (Mod)
Quoting 2969. AtHomeInTX:


Will do. Thank you. :)


Don't know if they can help you but its worth giving it a try ..

If I remember right .. you had several blogs and many comments ..
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Quoting 2967. tropicfreak:
Shearing is clearly evident, but she is hanging in there!

We will see what DMAX has in store for her.



She is quite a toughie.....she been fighting her environment from the get go....kudos to her. Hope she makes it up to the US as a TD/TS for all her effort and fight.
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Quoting 2968. wunderkidcayman:
new surface map shows a new high pressure forming in the NE GOM this is to add to the high over SE US and a strong high over Bermuda

Chantal is GOM bound
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2970. emguy
Quoting 2962. KoritheMan:


She very well could. Ernesto looked just as sickly last year in a similar location, and it ultimately became a Category 2 hurricane.

A little skeptical for now though, since Ernesto wasn't moving as fast Chantal. Not by a longshot.


I totally understand your thinking Kori. You're a good man on here. One note I've observed in tracking these tropical cyclones over the years is that there is something unique to take from each of them to apply to the next...at the same time each one of them is completely unique. It is fitting that each one earns a name as each one has a unique personality of it's own based on where it develops, the atmospheric interaction it has, and where it impacts (and how the land impacts it).

In respect to Chantal, I might be quicker to dismiss this system, but the persistance to maintain convection on the weak side (the southern flank of her) where those west wids may be, despite her rapid forward speed tells me to definately hang in there on it. She wants to hold on. She's not well organized now, but definately one to watch. Pretty amazing for early July if I must say.
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Quoting 2966. whitewabit:


To fill out a support ticket go to the bottom of any page .. the very, very bottom line you will see a line that says About Us click on Support .. at the top right on the page it takes you to .. you will see Contact Support .. click on it and will take you to a page to fill out and a support ticket to send to them !!


Will do. Thank you. :)
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new surface map shows a new high pressure forming in the NE GOM this is to add to the high over SE US and a strong high over Bermuda
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Shearing is clearly evident, but she is hanging in there!

We will see what DMAX has in store for her.

Member Since: September 2, 2006 Posts: 110 Comments: 6814
2966. whitewabit (Mod)
Quoting 2964. AtHomeInTX:


First I heard of that. Thanks for the tip. :)


To fill out a support ticket go to the bottom of any page .. the very, very bottom line you will see a line that says About Us click on Support .. at the top right on the page it takes you to .. you will see Contact Support .. click on it and will take you to a page to fill out and a support ticket to send to them !!
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Quoting 2960. KoritheMan:
As I thought, they are hesitant to make a sharp westward turn for now. Smart move.



May just be that is at the end of their time limit. I think the GFS got about there than kind of dove sw a little bit before wast. Or I could be wrong.
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Quoting 2961. whitewabit:


ok .. thought your blogs and such might be hidden but shown there .. sorry .. hope you sent in a support ticket !


First I heard of that. Thanks for the tip. :)
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Hi emguy!

Always like your posts for all the good info ya put out....glad to see ya back once again....looks like it's to be a very busy summer/fall in the tropics.
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Quoting 2958. emguy:


I've done this since 1985...she's not done yet...Sick looking storm at this time? Yes. Done? Certainly and absolutely not done yet. It's a rough patch for this storm, but it will make a comeback.


She very well could. Ernesto looked just as sickly last year in a similar location, and it ultimately became a Category 2 hurricane.

A little skeptical for now though, since Ernesto wasn't moving as fast Chantal. Not by a longshot.
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2961. whitewabit (Mod)
Quoting 2959. AtHomeInTX:


Ah, I found it. Sorry about that. :)



3923 comments and 24 entries posted by all members in the last 24 hours.

You have posted 0 entries in your own blog.

You have posted 44 comments in all blogs.


ok .. thought your blogs and such might be hidden but shown there .. sorry .. hope you sent in a support ticket !
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As I thought, they are hesitant to make a sharp westward turn for now. Smart move.

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Quoting 2954. whitewabit:


re read my last post .. I am talking about the page which lists all the blogs .. on the far right there is a colume and at the bottom or near it should show you the number of blogs you have posted and the number of comments you have made ..


Ah, I found it. Sorry about that. :)



3923 comments and 24 entries posted by all members in the last 24 hours.

You have posted 0 entries in your own blog.

You have posted 44 comments in all blogs.
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2958. emguy
Quoting 2947. KoritheMan:


I've done this long enough to know what to do, and what I'm talking about. The evidence of her degeneration is clearly there.


I've done this since 1985...she's not done yet...Sick looking storm at this time? Yes. Done? Certainly and absolutely not done yet. It's a rough patch for this storm, but it will make a comeback.
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it will be ok.........dorian next up, then Eri,Fernand,Gabrielle and Humberto will be here soon enough......and we still will be tracking the Chantal or whatever it reverts until it makes landfall or dissipates over water. We will be very busy this summer/fall, IMHO
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shear is low and falling in the SE Caribbean S of 15N E of 70W but as the storm makes its way shear should ease up IMO

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5AM Advisory.
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2954. whitewabit (Mod)
Quoting 2949. AtHomeInTX:


Didn't see what you meant. Under my handle it still had the name of the last blog I made. But it wasn't there. It's no biggy though. It has been a while since I made one. Just something I noticed.


.. I am talking about the page which lists all the blogs .. on the far right there is a column and at the bottom or near it should show you the number of blogs you have posted and the number of comments you have made ..
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Quoting 2947. KoritheMan:


I've done this long enough to know what to do, and what I'm talking about. The evidence of her degeneration is clearly there.


I know what you are saying and you have a good point. I just find it funny that just hours ago everyone was saying this was going to become a hurricane, now everyone is crying out open wave.

Cup of coffee, please.
Member Since: September 2, 2006 Posts: 110 Comments: 6814
TROPICAL STORM CHANTAL DISCUSSION NUMBER 6
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL032013
500 AM AST TUE JUL 09 2013

CHANTAL HAS CHANGED LITTLE IN STRUCTURE OVER THE LAST SEVERAL HOURS.
RADAR DATA FROM BARBADOS AND SATELLITE IMAGES INDICATE THAT THE
CENTER IS LOCATED ON THE NORTH-NORTHWEST SIDE OF THE COLDEST CLOUD
TOPS AND SHOWER ACTIVITY. OVERALL THE CLOUD PATTERN IS NOT VERY
WELL ORGANIZED AND LACKS WELL-DEFINED BANDING FEATURES. THE INITIAL
WIND SPEED IS HELD AT 45 KT...IN AGREEMENT WITH THE DVORAK
CLASSIFICATIONS AND ASCAT DATA. AN AIR FORCE RECONNAISSANCE
AIRCRAFT IS SCHEDULED TO INVESTIGATE CHANTAL LATER THIS MORNING AND
WILL PROVIDE A BETTER ASSESSMENT OF ITS INTENSITY.

THE TROPICAL STORM CONTINUES TO RACE WEST-NORTHWESTWARD...WITH THE
LATEST INITIAL MOTION ESTIMATE BEING 290/23. A CONTINUED FAST
WEST-NORTHWESTWARD MOTION IS EXPECTED FOR THE NEXT DAY OR SO AS
THE STORM REMAINS TO THE SOUTH OF A SUBTROPICAL RIDGE OVER THE
CENTRAL ATLANTIC. THIS MOTION SHOULD TAKE CHANTAL ACROSS THE
LESSER ANTILLES LATER THIS MORNING...AND NEAR HISPANIOLA ON
WEDNESDAY. BEYOND THAT TIME...THE GLOBAL MODELS SHOW A TROUGH
MOVING ACROSS THE EASTERN UNITED STATES. THIS TROUGH SHOULD WEAKEN
THE RIDGE AND CAUSE CHANTAL TO SLOW DOWN AND TURN TOWARD THE
NORTH-NORTHWEST. A SLIGHT LEFT TURN IS PREDICTED BY THE END OF THE
FORECAST PERIOD AS THE MODELS SHOW A RIDGE REBUILDING TO THE
NORTHEAST OF CHANTAL BY THAT TIME. THE NHC TRACK FORECAST IS AN
UPDATE OF THE PREVIOUS ONE FOR THE FIRST COUPLE OF DAYS AND IS
SHIFTED A LITTLE TO THE EAST THEREAFTER...TO COME INTO BETTER
AGREEMENT WITH THE LATEST GUIDANCE.

SLOW STRENGTHENING IS FORECAST FOR THE NEXT 36 HOURS AS CHANTAL
REMAINS OVER WARM WATER AND IN AN ENVIRONMENT OF MODERATE WIND
SHEAR. PRONOUNCED WEAKENING IS THEN EXPECTED WHEN CHANTAL MOVES
OVER OR INTERACTS WITH THE RUGGED TERRAIN OF HISPANIOLA. IF THE
CYCLONE SURVIVES ITS TREK ACROSS HISPANIOLA...IT COULD RE-INTENSIFY
AS THE ENVIRONMENTAL WIND PATTERN IS ANTICIPATED TO BECOME MORE
FAVORABLE BY THE TIME THE SYSTEM REACHES THE BAHAMAS. ONLY SLIGHT
MODIFICATIONS WERE MADE TO THE WIND SPEED FORECAST OF THE PREVIOUS
ADVISORY...AND THE LATEST NHC INTENSITY FORECAST IS MORE OR LESS IN
LINE WITH THE FLORIDA STATE SUPERENSEMBLE AND THE INTENSITY MODEL
CONSENSUS.

FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INIT 09/0900Z 13.3N 58.4W 45 KT 50 MPH
12H 09/1800Z 14.6N 61.7W 50 KT 60 MPH
24H 10/0600Z 16.3N 65.9W 55 KT 65 MPH
36H 10/1800Z 18.2N 69.4W 60 KT 70 MPH
48H 11/0600Z 20.1N 72.0W 40 KT 45 MPH
72H 12/0600Z 23.5N 74.8W 40 KT 45 MPH
96H 13/0600Z 26.5N 76.0W 45 KT 50 MPH
120H 14/0600Z 28.5N 77.5W 50 KT 60 MPH

$$
FORECASTER CANGIALOSI/PASCH
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BULLETIN
TROPICAL STORM CHANTAL ADVISORY NUMBER 6
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL032013
500 AM AST TUE JUL 09 2013

...CHANTAL JUST EAST OF BARBADOS...


SUMMARY OF 500 AM AST...0900 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...13.3N 58.4W
ABOUT 75 MI...120 KM E OF BARBADOS
ABOUT 180 MI...285 KM E OF ST. LUCIA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...50 MPH...85 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...WNW OR 290 DEGREES AT 26 MPH...43 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...1010 MB...29.83 INCHES
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000
WTNT43 KNHC 090837
TCDAT3

TROPICAL STORM CHANTAL DISCUSSION NUMBER 6
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL032013
500 AM AST TUE JUL 09 2013

CHANTAL HAS CHANGED LITTLE IN STRUCTURE OVER THE LAST SEVERAL HOURS.
RADAR DATA FROM BARBADOS AND SATELLITE IMAGES INDICATE THAT THE
CENTER IS LOCATED ON THE NORTH-NORTHWEST SIDE OF THE COLDEST CLOUD
TOPS AND SHOWER ACTIVITY. OVERALL THE CLOUD PATTERN IS NOT VERY
WELL ORGANIZED AND LACKS WELL-DEFINED BANDING FEATURES. THE INITIAL
WIND SPEED IS HELD AT 45 KT...IN AGREEMENT WITH THE DVORAK
CLASSIFICATIONS AND ASCAT DATA. AN AIR FORCE RECONNAISSANCE
AIRCRAFT IS SCHEDULED TO INVESTIGATE CHANTAL LATER THIS MORNING AND
WILL PROVIDE A BETTER ASSESSMENT OF ITS INTENSITY.

THE TROPICAL STORM CONTINUES TO RACE WEST-NORTHWESTWARD...WITH THE
LATEST INITIAL MOTION ESTIMATE BEING 290/23. A CONTINUED FAST
WEST-NORTHWESTWARD MOTION IS EXPECTED FOR THE NEXT DAY OR SO AS
THE STORM REMAINS TO THE SOUTH OF A SUBTROPICAL RIDGE OVER THE
CENTRAL ATLANTIC. THIS MOTION SHOULD TAKE CHANTAL ACROSS THE
LESSER ANTILLES LATER THIS MORNING...AND NEAR HISPANIOLA ON
WEDNESDAY. BEYOND THAT TIME...THE GLOBAL MODELS SHOW A TROUGH
MOVING ACROSS THE EASTERN UNITED STATES. THIS TROUGH SHOULD WEAKEN
THE RIDGE AND CAUSE CHANTAL TO SLOW DOWN AND TURN TOWARD THE
NORTH-NORTHWEST. A SLIGHT LEFT TURN IS PREDICTED BY THE END OF THE
FORECAST PERIOD AS THE MODELS SHOW A RIDGE REBUILDING TO THE
NORTHEAST OF CHANTAL BY THAT TIME. THE NHC TRACK FORECAST IS AN
UPDATE OF THE PREVIOUS ONE FOR THE FIRST COUPLE OF DAYS AND IS
SHIFTED A LITTLE TO THE EAST THEREAFTER...TO COME INTO BETTER
AGREEMENT WITH THE LATEST GUIDANCE.

SLOW STRENGTHENING IS FORECAST FOR THE NEXT 36 HOURS AS CHANTAL
REMAINS OVER WARM WATER AND IN AN ENVIRONMENT OF MODERATE WIND
SHEAR. PRONOUNCED WEAKENING IS THEN EXPECTED WHEN CHANTAL MOVES
OVER OR INTERACTS WITH THE RUGGED TERRAIN OF HISPANIOLA. IF THE
CYCLONE SURVIVES ITS TREK ACROSS HISPANIOLA...IT COULD RE-INTENSIFY
AS THE ENVIRONMENTAL WIND PATTERN IS ANTICIPATED TO BECOME MORE
FAVORABLE BY THE TIME THE SYSTEM REACHES THE BAHAMAS. ONLY SLIGHT
MODIFICATIONS WERE MADE TO THE WIND SPEED FORECAST OF THE PREVIOUS
ADVISORY...AND THE LATEST NHC INTENSITY FORECAST IS MORE OR LESS IN
LINE WITH THE FLORIDA STATE SUPERENSEMBLE AND THE INTENSITY MODEL
CONSENSUS.

FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INIT 09/0900Z 13.3N 58.4W 45 KT 50 MPH
12H 09/1800Z 14.6N 61.7W 50 KT 60 MPH
24H 10/0600Z 16.3N 65.9W 55 KT 65 MPH
36H 10/1800Z 18.2N 69.4W 60 KT 70 MPH
48H 11/0600Z 20.1N 72.0W 40 KT 45 MPH
72H 12/0600Z 23.5N 74.8W 40 KT 45 MPH
96H 13/0600Z 26.5N 76.0W 45 KT 50 MPH
120H 14/0600Z 28.5N 77.5W 50 KT 60 MPH

$$
FORECASTER CANGIALOSI/PASCH
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Quoting 2940. whitewabit:
AtHomeInTX when you are on the Community Blog Page (the list of blogs) .. on the far right at near the bottom of that column .. how many posts does it say you have ???


Didn't see what you meant. Under my handle it still had the name of the last blog I made. But it wasn't there. It's no biggy though. It has been a while since I made one. Just something I noticed.
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twas older my bad
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Quoting 2945. tropicfreak:
You all are really entertaining, the way this mood changes.


I've done this long enough to know what to do, and what I'm talking about. The evidence of her degeneration is clearly there.
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You all are really entertaining, the way this mood changes.
Member Since: September 2, 2006 Posts: 110 Comments: 6814
I know it's not much, but recent satellite images show a small flareup of showers to the west of the exposed center:



Will dmax help to tuck the center underneath the convection again? Doubtful, but we'll see.
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2943. whitewabit (Mod)
A reminder ..

During name storms .. keep comments on about the storm or the topic of Dr Msters Blog .. adhere to the Rules of the Road ..

Other off topic comments will not be tolerated ..

It would be a shame for a blogger to be unable to post during a storm ..

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that happened to someone else earlier
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To the moon Alice!
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2940. whitewabit (Mod)
AtHomeInTX when you are on the Community Blog Page (the list of blogs) .. on the far right at near the bottom of that column .. how many posts does it say you have ???
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Quoting 2936. KoritheMan:


What happened to your post count? It's down to 41.


Lol. Apparently computers can restart my membership. I don't have blogs anymore either. Didn't notice the post count though.
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Wow.

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Quoting 2934. TomTaylor:
Before everyone goes on blaming the fast trade wind flow, let's remember that a TC exists throughout the entire vertical extent of the troposphere. That means that we can't just blame things on the lower-level environment. An upper level trough exists to her NW and is clearly working with the low-level trade winds to shear the storm. Since vertical wind shear is the difference in wind between two layers of the atmosphere, we can't place all the blame on the low-levels. Instead, it is the coupled upper and lower level environment which are shearing the storm. Shearing explains the lopsided convection and low-level circulation outrunning the main convection.


True. The low-levels and the upper-levels are actually blowing toward one another, creating a very hostile environment.
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Quoting 2931. AtHomeInTX:


Oh :P


What happened to your post count? It's down to 41.
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Per microwave circulation is opening up.

I will see what we have tomorrow. Going back to bed.

I do believe this is the end of the line for this storm though. Westerlies always shut them down this early in the year if they move that fast (see both ernestos).


Goodnight all.
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Before everyone goes on blaming the fast trade wind flow, let's remember that a TC exists throughout the entire vertical extent of the troposphere. That means that we can't just blame things on the lower-level environment. An upper level trough exists to her NW and is clearly working with the low-level trade winds to shear the storm. Since vertical wind shear is the difference in wind between two layers of the atmosphere, we can't place all the blame on the low-levels. Instead, it is the coupled upper and lower level environment which are shearing the storm. Shearing explains the lopsided convection and low-level circulation outrunning the main convection.

Fast trade wind flow can be blamed for limiting low-level convergence and preventing a storm from closing off it's circulation and that's about it.
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Quoting 2916. Civicane49:
Circulation is definitely outrunning the main area of convection.




It's been doing that from the get go at different times during the last 24 hours?
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About JeffMasters

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.