Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.
By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:21 AM GMT on October 11, 2006
Heavy thunderstorm activity has increased this evening in association with an area of disturbed weather a few hundered miles east of the Lesser Antilles Islands. A buoy about 150 miles north of the center of the disturbance has seen an increase in wind speed over the past 12 hours, and the winds tonight are now 30 mph with higher gusts. However, the pressure at this buoy is not falling. Unfortunately, winds from the QuikSCAT satellite are not available in the region tonight, and we will have to wait until about 9am EDT for another pass. We should also have wind reports from some of the islands Wednesday afternoon as the disturbance moves through.
Wind shear is a low 10 knots over the disturbance, and is forecast to remain below 10 knots for the next three days over the Caribbean. This may allow the disturbance to develop. None of the computer models develop the disurbance yet, but that may change by morning.
Figure 1. Preliminary model tracks for disturbance "90L".
Hawaii needs to continue watch an area of disturbed weather (now called 97C) near 9N, 163W, about 700 miles southwest of the Hawaiian Islands. Its thunderstorm activity has gotten better organized today, and system has the potential to develop into a tropical depression by Thursday. The system is currently under about 10 knots of winds shear, and is underneath an upper-level anticyclone. Sea Surface Temperatures (SSTs) are about 29C, and there is a very deep pool of warm water underneath to fuel intensification. These are all very favorable conditions for development. SSTs stay above 26C all the way to Hawaii, and a landfalling hurricane in the islands is a possibility a week or so from now.
Figure 2. Preliminary model tracks for disturbance "97C".
I'll have an update by 10am EDT Wednesday.
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