Unusual Chantal Disorganized, but has 65 mph Winds

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 8:06 PM GMT on July 09, 2013

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Unusual Tropical Storm Chantal has strengthened a bit more as it speeds west-northwestwards at 26 mph away from the the Lesser Antilles Islands. Sustained winds of 38 mph, gusting to 52 mph, were observed at Martinique at 10 am AST as the storm passed. However, an automated weather station at the airport measured sustained winds of 60 mph, gusting to 78 mph, according to an official with Meteo-France. The Associated Press reported that Chantal ripped the roofs off of several homes on neighboring Dominica. An Air Force hurricane hunter aircraft measured top winds at their 1,000' flight level of 89 mph at 12:55 pm AST. Top winds seen by the aircraft's SFMR instrument were about 65 mph, in a small area east of Chantal's center. The Hurricane Hunters have departed Chantal, and the next plane is due in the storm at 8 pm EDT. Chantal's winds are unusually high considering the storm's high central pressure of 1006 mb and disorganized appearance on satellite imagery. Chantal is fighting dry air associated with the Saharan Air Layer (SAL), as seen on water vapor satellite loops. This dry air is creating strong thunderstorm downdrafts that are robbing Chantal of moisture and energy. Visible satellite loops show the outflow boundaries of these thunderstorm downdrafts at the surface, spreading to the northwest of Chantal. Martinique Radar shows a large area of heavy rain that is not well-organized, lying mostly to the west of the Lesser Antilles Islands.


Figure 1. MODIS image of Chantal taken at approximately 1 pm EDT Tuesday, July 9, 2013. At the time, Chantal had top winds of 65 mph, but looked very disorganized, due to high wind shear and dry air. Dry air is creating strong thunderstorm downdrafts that are robbing Chantal of moisture and energy. Outflow boundaries from these downdrafts are spreading out to the northwest of Chantal, as seen on this satellite image. Image credit: NASA.

An small-scale easterly jet creating high shear in Chantal
Chantal is not very impressive on satellite images, with a modest amount of heavy thunderstorms that are not well-organized. Only a small amount of upper-level outflow is visible. The reason for Chantal's rather disorganized appearance can be found by looking at this morning's balloon sounding from Guadaloupe. This island was just northwest of the center of Chantal when the balloon was launched at 8 am EDT. The sounding showed typical easterly trade winds at the surface of 12 knots (14 mph.) However, the winds rose quickly aloft, with a jet of easterly winds of 35 - 53 knots between 800 - 600 mb (about 7,000 - 15,000'.) But, by the time the ballon hit 500 mb (18,000'), the winds had died down to 15 knots. A change of wind speed from 12 knots to 53 knots and back down to 15 knots from the surface to 500 mb is a tremendous amount of wind shear, which will make it very difficult for a tropical storm to keep the surface center aligned with the upper level center. The traditional measure of wind shear, the difference in wind between 200 mb and 850 mb, was 44 knots in this morning's Guadaloupe sounding, but was a much higher 56 knots from 200 mb to 700 mb. The powerful easterly wind jet was not apparent at any of the other balloon soundings this morning at adjacent islands (Barbados, Puerto Rico, Saint Martin), and demonstrates that there is a lot going on the atmosphere at small scales we cannot see which makes intensity forecasting of tropical cyclones very challenging. Thanks go to Jason Dunion of NOAA's Hurricane Research Division for pointing out this morning's interesting Guadaloupe sounding.

Forecast for Chantal
Chantal will have difficulty intensifying much more before hitting Hispaniola on Wednesday afternoon. In their 11 am EDT wind probability forecast, NHC gave Chantal a 29% chance of becoming a hurricane before hitting Hispaniola. Working against intensification will be the high wind shear from the strong mid-level easterly jet discussed above, plus 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. Interaction with the high mountains of Hispaniola and high wind shear may be able to destroy Chantal by Thursday. The 2 pm EDT Tuesday wind shear forecast from the SHIPS model calls for shear to rise to the high range, 20 - 35 knots, Tuesday night through Friday. On Saturday, when Chantal is expected to be in the Bahamas, moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots is predicted. If Chantal survives until Saturday, it will then have the opportunity to re-strengthen. The latest 12Z run of the European model (ECMWF) dissipates Chantal as it crosses Hispaniola. The 12Z run of the American GFS model has Chantal barely surviving.

Chantal's fast west-northwest forward speed of 26 mph will slow to 20 mph by Wednesday morning and then 10 mph by Thursday night, as the storm "feels" the presence of a trough of low pressure over the U.S. East Coast. This trough will steer Chantal to the northwest and then north-northwest across Hispaniola and into the Bahamas. The trough of low pressure pulling Chantal northwards is expected to lift out the the northeast over the weekend, leaving Chantal behind off the coast of Florida. High pressure will likely build in, potentially forcing Chantal westwards into the Florida or Southeast U.S. coast, with a possible Sunday landfall.

Jeff Masters

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I'm done for the night Good nite everyone
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Meanwhile, in 2005...

AFTER DEEPENING AT A RATE THAT BORDERED ON INSANE DURING THE
AFTERNOON...DENNIS HAS CONTINUED TO STRENGTHEN AT A MORE NORMAL
RATE THIS EVENING. REPORTS FROM AN AIR FORCE RESERVE HURRICANE
HUNTER AIRCRAFT SHOW THAT THE CENTRAL PRESSURE HAS FALLEN TO 941
MB...WITH MAXIMUM FLIGHT-LEVEL WINDS OF 122 KT IN THE NORTHEAST
QUADRANT. BASED ON THIS...THE INITIAL INTENSITY IS 110 KT. IT IS
EXPECTED THAT WHEN THE AIRCRAFT AGAIN SAMPLES THE NORTHEAST EYEWALL
THAT IT WILL FIND STRONGER WINDS THAT WILL JUSTIFY UPGRADING DENNIS
TO A CATEGORY FOUR HURRICANE. IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT ALTHOUGH
DENNIS HAS A VERY LARGE OUTER WIND FIELD... THE HURRICANE FORCE
WINDS ARE CONFINED TO A VERY SMALL AREA NEAR THE CENTER.



Could be worse.
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Quoting 1551. Stormchaser121:
If she's gone why did they bother?
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Guys its not an open wave, Stop it! shes gota half exposed center on the sw side on the Convection "ball" if you will. The classic sheared tropical clone look, winds 40-45 mph. She moving between W and wnw.
Member Since: July 21, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1163
Looks like a strong open wave. Great news for Haiti, but a strong open wave is more than capable of spinning back up. If a strong wave hits the gulf stream and moves slowly through the Bahamas or off the east florida coast, she could easily strengthen (given the right conditions). Just because shes "dead" doesn't mean she won't be back. Relax and let's see what happens tomorrow. Good night all
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Quoting 1434. Hurricane12:
Let's hope DMAX works in Chantal's favor, or whatever is left of it, for that matter.


Personally I hope this crazy woman is dead come the AM... then again I live right in the bowling alley so things are a bit more personal.
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Found it! Ok here is a discussion from Felix...

AT 500 PM AST...2100Z...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM FELIX WAS
LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 12.7 NORTH...LONGITUDE 65.3 WEST OR ABOUT 310
MILES...500 KM EAST OF ARUBA AND ABOUT 395 MILES...640 KM...SOUTH
OF SAN JUAN PUERTO RICO.

DATA FROM THE STEPPED FREQUENCY MICROWAVE RADIOMETER ON BOARD THE
AIR FORCE RESERVE HURRICANE HUNTER INDICATE THAT TROPICAL STORM
FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 140 MILES...220 KM...PRIMARILY TO
THE NORTH OF THE CENTER.

Link
Member Since: June 30, 2013 Posts: 12 Comments: 8245
Quoting 1574. taco2me61:


That was so funny :o) But you are so "Right" just saying....


Taco :o)


Most people are confuse right about now. this goes from barely having a closed low to being near Hurricane force. I have never seen this before
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1578. hydrus
Quoting 1557. Patrap:
Prolly some kids with a few Estes "D" motored Rockets launching downrange.

I mean, it could happen?


If the system crosses Hispaniola in its current state, I would say she has only a small chance at regeneration. That being said, if Chantal misses the mountainous island to the south, things could change for the worse.
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Quoting 1567. unknowncomic:
Then there is this. 0z NAM shows Chantal as an open wave over florida straits and the ULL organized in the north gulf at 84 HRS.





Please, please put the NAM back in the closet until winter...It does not belong in a tropical discussion ;)
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Quoting 1564. TylerStanfield:

Thank you for posting a false statement and adding a useless amount of exclamation points... Welcome to my Ignore List. Sorry. Goodnight.


Hahaha,i don't care, :p :p unless you isn't levi
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Quoting 1560. SavannahStorm:


face, meet palm...

This place flip flops more than a Friday night tiki bar...


That was so funny :o) But you are so "Right" just saying....


Taco :o)
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1573. Patrap
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Here in Cidra PR, it rained for a couple of minutes, some decent gusts and that's all. But we have Ley Seca, dammit.
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Quoting 1561. Grothar:
Convective bust seems to be continuing




Chantal looks better on that satellite. we will see if this is an open wave or a ts in the morning
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Quoting 1550. Hurricanes305:


Hold on nobody said to start a war with anybody. But this is ridiculous.


No war... I'm a democrat :-)

But any aid that goes there needs to stop immediately. I wouldn't be opposed to cutting any buying/selling of goods that goes on with them either. It is the principal... HH's trying to save lives, and they put politics ahead of lives. F em
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Quoting 1543. Astrometeor:


You know what would've been nice? If wiki had a map to go along with this:

US-Venezuela Maritime Treaty


That would be informative, wouldn't it?
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1568. hydrus
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Then there is this. 0z NAM shows Chantal as an open wave over florida straits and the ULL organized in the north gulf at 84 HRS.


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Quoting 1540. CarolinaHurricanes87:


I have no idea what our relationship with that country is, but if they are accepting Snowden AND blocking our HH's.... we need to immediately cut any and all ties with that country. Screw them. Long term, they need us more than we need them. Venezuela is an official enemy of the United States as far as I'm concerned


Our relationship with Venezuela is one of the worst, and almost certainly worst in the western hemisphere. Drug trafficking and system of government are the two big ticket items.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Quoting 1551. Stormchaser121:


The last point of the GFS on here is right over me. Remnants are nice if that comes true.
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Quoting 1541. stormchaser19:
RIP Chantal....Open wave!!!!!!!!


:(

Thank you for posting a false statement and adding a useless amount of exclamation points... Welcome to my Ignore List. Sorry. Goodnight.
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Quoting 1552. weatherboykris:



I'm sorry. What are they teaching in school nowadays that you think the NHC can sign treaties?


lol its was just a joke
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It is possible the Chantal has decoupled. PR radar does show a vortex or trough at the surface NW of her around 16.2N and 66.5W. Question is.... will this take over tonight as it approaches Haiti or will the current Chantal hold it's own. That's what we must watch later tonight and into Weds morning!
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1561. Grothar
Convective burst seems to be continuing


Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26126
Quoting 1541. stormchaser19:
RIP Chantal....Open wave!!!!!!!!


:(


face, meet palm...

This place flip flops more than a Friday night tiki bar...
Member Since: September 22, 2005 Posts: 18 Comments: 2342
1559. JLPR2
I believe there is a higher chance that Chantal opened up into a wave than there being a LLC farther south. I mean as if moving in the mid twenties mph wasn't bad enough today it accelerated to 29mph and dealed with dry air issues.



But who knows it might surprise us again tomorrow.
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Quoting 1295. MechEngMet:


Okay yes you are correct. But I thought they would look for the center fix first then go study the atmosphere around. Near the end of the mission go find the center again to get storm heading and speed.

I just looks like they are trying to avoid the center. Have you looked at the flight path tonight?


Nope, sorry. I just look at maps and loops. That's all. Small mind. :-)
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1557. Patrap
Prolly some kids with a few Estes "D" motored Rockets launching downrange.

I mean, it could happen?


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1556. whitewabit (Mod)
The NHC will probably leave the advisories the same till recon can get them new info
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IF NOT FOR THE GOVERNMENT OF VENEZUELA THIS PROBABLY WOULD HAVE BEEN
THE LAST ADVISORY ON EARL...

The NHC makes me LOL sometimes. They always throw in a sneaking joke at the most awkward time, lol looks like some1 brought booze by their office.
Member Since: July 21, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1163
Quoting 1544. ncstorm:
12z CMC Ensembles


Interesting ensembles there, ncstorm. Are you still in Wilmington? If the storm still exists and heads close enough that way, I think I'll make the drive back from Raleigh. Old friends and a hurricane..err.. tropical storm party.

Anyway, this is an embarrassingly rookie question, but when you say 0z, 6z, 12z, etc... what are the corresponding times for eastern time zone?

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I think so too whitewabit. That one was the first I found.
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Quoting 1530. Hurricanes305:


That sucks this is why I hate Politics this is about a storm. Why don't the NHC sign a treaty with all countries in the Caribbean explaining that their Recon flights are there to collect data on systems.



I'm sorry. What are they teaching in school nowadays that you think the NHC can sign treaties?
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Quoting 1540. CarolinaHurricanes87:


I have no idea what our relationship with that country is, but if they are accepting Snowden AND blocking our HH's.... we need to immediately cut any and all ties with that country. Screw them. Long term, they need us more than we need them. Venezuela is an official enemy of the United States as far as I'm concerned


Hold on nobody said to start a war with anybody. But this is ridiculous.
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1549. JRRP
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I hope the new GFS has something interesting to show us.... something like a WELL ORGANIZED Dorian moving westward in the DEEP tropics lol.
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Quoting 1514. Patrap:

The Estimated location of her circulation is on the Northwestern side of the flare up of convection.

I'm calling it quits for the night. Chantal is not amusing to me at all right now, and I could care less about what the 00Z models are showing.

Goodnight everyone.
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1546. whitewabit (Mod)
Quoting 1534. BaltimoreBrian:
As I said, Venezuela has been doing this a while.

ZCZC MIATCDAT5 ALL
TTAA00 KNHC DDHHMM
TROPICAL STORM EARL DISCUSSION NUMBER 10
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
11 PM EDT SUN AUG 15 2004

IF NOT FOR THE GOVERNMENT OF VENEZUELA THIS PROBABLY WOULD HAVE BEEN
THE LAST ADVISORY ON EARL...AT LEAST FOR NOW. THE RECONNAISSANCE
AIRCRAFT SCHEDULED TO INVESTIGATE EARL THIS EVENING WAS DENIED
ACCESS TO VENEZUELAN AIRSPACE.
HAD THEY BEEN ABLE TO GET TO THE
STORM...I DOUBT THEY WOULD HAVE FOUND A CLOSED CIRCULATION...AS THE
QUIKSCAT AMBIGUITIES AT 22Z LOOK MORE LIKE AN OPEN WAVE.
HOWEVER...THERE IS ENOUGH DOUBT TO KEEP ADVISORIES GOING UNTIL THE
NEXT AIRCRAFT ARRIVES TOMORROW MORNING...AND INDICATIONS ARE THAT
THAT MISSION WILL BE ALLOWED TO PROCEED.

THE INITIAL MOTION IS AN UNCERTAIN 280/19...AS QUIKSCAT AND
MICROWAVE DATA SUGGEST THAT THE LOW-LEVEL CENTER OR WAVE AXIS MAY
BE MOVING OUT SOMEWHAT AHEAD OF THE CONVECTION. GLOBAL MODELS ARE
IN GOOD AGREEMENT ON ENHANCED MID-LEVEL RIDGING OVER FLORIDA AS THE
TROUGH CURRENTLY OVER THE EASTERN UNITED STATES LIFTS OUT OVER THE
NEXT DAY OR TWO. THIS IS EXPECTED TO KEEP EARL...OR ITS
REMNANTS...ON A WEST TO WEST-NORTHWESTERLY TRACK FOR MUCH OF THE
FORECAST PERIOD. NEAR THE END OF THE FORECAST PERIOD...A MORE
NORTHWESTERLY TRACK IS POSSIBLE AS EARL REACHES THE PERIPHERY OF
THE RIDGE. MODEL GUIDANCE SO FAR HAS TENDED TO BE TOO FAR NORTH
WITH EARL...AND THE OFFICIAL FORECAST HAS BEEN ADJUSTED A LITTLE TO
THE LEFT OF THE PREVIOUS TRACK.

THE CLOUD PATTERN OF EARL IS LESS IMPRESSIVE THAN IT WAS EARLIER IN
THE DAY...WITH THE UPPER-LEVEL OUTFLOW PATTERN SEEMINGLY BEING
REPLACED BY A MORE UNIFORM EASTERLY FLOW...AND THE CONVECTION IS
CURRENTLY MEAGER. THE RAPID FORWARD SPEED ALSO CONTINUES TO BE A
NEGATIVE FOR INTENSIFICATION. THE ENVIRONMENT AHEAD OF THE SYSTEM
IS FORECAST BY GLOBAL MODELS TO BE FAVORABLE...HOWEVER...AND BOTH
THE SHIPS AND GFDL MODELS CONTINUE TO ANTICIPATE EARL BECOMING A
HURRICANE. THIS COULD HAPPEN EVEN IF THE SYSTEM DISSIPATES INTO AN
OPEN WAVE TOMORROW.

FORECASTER FRANKLIN

FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INITIAL 16/0300Z 12.7N 65.4W 40 KT
12HR VT 16/1200Z 13.4N 68.6W 40 KT
24HR VT 17/0000Z 14.3N 72.9W 45 KT
36HR VT 17/1200Z 14.9N 76.5W 50 KT
48HR VT 18/0000Z 15.5N 80.0W 60 KT
72HR VT 19/0000Z 17.0N 85.0W 65 KT
96HR VT 20/0000Z 19.0N 89.0W 60 KT...INLAND
120HR VT 21/0000Z 21.0N 93.0W 70 KT...OVER WATER


$$
NNNN


Think I can remember a couple of other times they wouldn't let them fly ..
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Quoting 1517. CaicosRetiredSailor:
Am I the only one here happy and smiling? : )


Results for Provo, TCI (21.78N, 72.27W):
The approximate Closest Point of Approach (CPA) is located near 19.8N, 74.2W or about 183.9 miles (295.9 km) from your location. The estimated time of when the center of the storm will be at that location is in about 1 day, 7 hours and 13 minutes from now (Thursday, July 11 at 6:24AM AST).


I am. I'm breathing, reading the blog and on vacation. What's not to smile about? *G*
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1544. ncstorm
12z CMC Ensembles
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Quoting 1516. BaltimoreBrian:
Also don't forget Isla Aves, an island that belongs to Venezuela at 15.7 N 63.7 W


You know what would've been nice? If wiki had a map to go along with this:

US-Venezuela Maritime Treaty
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Quoting 1434. Hurricane12:
Let's hope DMAX works in Chantal's favor, or whatever is left of it, for that matter.
Quoting 1434. Hurricane12:
Let's hope DMAX works in Chantal's favor, or whatever is left of it, for that matter.


So, if I understand your post, you are hoping for Chantal to strengthen? And possibly, no, most likely hit Haiti and other areas, causing death and destruction?

Wow!
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RIP Chantal....Open wave!!!!!!!!


:(
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Quoting 1530. Hurricanes305:


That sucks this is why I hate Politics this is about a storm. Why don't the NHC sign a treaty with all countries in the Caribbean explaining that their Recon flights are there to collect data on systems.


I have no idea what our relationship with that country is, but if they are accepting Snowden AND blocking our HH's.... we need to immediately cut any and all ties with that country. Screw them. Long term, they need us more than we need them. Venezuela is an official enemy of the United States as far as I'm concerned
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Chantal still headed farther west and south.
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Quoting 1529. CarolinaHurricanes87:
I don't know much, but does it not look like the flareup of convection is just typical pulsing of a storm trying to strengthen while dealing with some limiting factors? She hit a lull this afternoon and evening, but that ball of convection firing is impressive. Maybe the COC is there and they just couldn't find it? I don't doubt that she weakened today, but don't think it is unrealistic that she could be right back to 65-70mph TS by tomorrow.


If we had visible atm you'd be able to see half of her LLC, you know that classic sheared shape. She weak atm, with Hispaniola in her crossairs. Plus a strong high, its over.
Member Since: July 21, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1163
Quoting 1525. Patrap:
Miami
NEXRAD Radar

Base Reflectivity 0.50° Elevation
Range 248 NMI



Pat, have you taken a look at surface obvs near there? Seems like some kind of spin in between the Bahamas and Florida.
Member Since: May 1, 2013 Posts: 0 Comments: 761
Quoting 1479. HurricaneAndre:


Nice!!!!
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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.