Tropical Tidbits from the Tundra

Dorian Weakens...Unlikely To Survive Much Longer

By: Levi32, 3:33 PM GMT on July 27, 2013

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Dorian Struggling More Today - Long-Term Future Still Uncertain

By: Levi32, 2:53 PM GMT on July 26, 2013

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Dorian Very Healthy - Could Strengthen Down the Road as He Comes Westward

By: Levi32, 1:02 AM GMT on July 25, 2013

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98L Likely to Develop, but Will Struggle to Survive - Many Days From Land

By: Levi32, 12:01 AM GMT on July 24, 2013

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Updated: 12:27 AM GMT on July 24, 2013

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Atlantic to Stay Quiet for Next 7-10 Days, Next Chance for Development not until End

By: Levi32, 12:25 AM GMT on July 17, 2013

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A Few Low-Threat Disturbances to Watch - Western Atlantic Quiets Down for Rest of Jul

By: Levi32, 3:50 PM GMT on July 13, 2013

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Watching Both Pieces of Chantal's Remnants and Another Upper Low in the Bahamas

By: Levi32, 11:48 PM GMT on July 11, 2013

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Chantal Degenerates - Has to be Watched for Redevelopment - More Waves to Watch After

By: Levi32, 11:37 PM GMT on July 10, 2013

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Chantal Weakens Significantly - No Longer an Immediate Threat Except for Heavy Rain

By: Levi32, 12:54 PM GMT on July 10, 2013

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Update 10:30am EDT:

The recon aircraft did find a wind shift in Chantal that indicates she has retained a very weak surface circulation. Pressures were high near 1013mb, indicating that she has weakened significantly. Thunderstorms are going back up over this center, so heavy rainfall will still impact Hispaniola today. As Chantal gets farther west and north her chances for restrengthening will increase in the NW Caribbean and perhaps the eastern Gulf of Mexico as she leaves the fast trade wind flow of the Caribbean which has nearly killed her, but a potential encounter with Cuba could also kill her forever. While Chantal has ceased to be an immediate significant threat, interests in the NW Caribbean from Jamaica to Cuba and Florida should monitor Chantal’s progress in case of restrengthening.

Previous Update:

In a striking turn of events, Chantal lost all of her thunderstorms for a few hours overnight, and although some are redeveloping this morning, this episode was enough for Chantal to lose her surface circulation, and she is likely an open wave. A recon aircraft is currently investigating whether this is the case, though airspace restrictions may prevent them from confirming it. Regardless, the unfavorable trade wind flow that we have expected to cause Chantal to struggle has done much more to her than anticipated, and Chantal may never recover. As a result, her low-level center is tracking with the low-level wind flow on a trajectory much farther to the west and south, and most of Chantal will now avoid Hispaniola. Chantal's future suggests a track towards Cuba and perhaps the Florida Peninsula. She potentially may have to be watched for redevelopment in the eastern Gulf of Mexico in a few days, but for now has ceased to be an immediate threat except for heavy rainfall.

We are essentially no longer tracking a tropical cyclone, but instead tracking a tropical wave that may have a chance to develop in a few days. I will have a full update this evening after work.

Levi



Updated: 3:06 PM GMT on July 10, 2013

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Chantal A Flooding Threat to Hispaniola & Cuba - Will Move Towards SE US This Weekend

By: Levi32, 1:20 AM GMT on July 10, 2013

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Chantal remains ragged in appearance on satellite imagery this evening with little convective organization. Most of the new thunderstorm development in recent hours is associated with outflow boundaries racing out ahead of the storm, with little vertical motion over the center of circulation which is obscured by the cirrus canopy. Upper-level outflow is non-existent on the north and west sides. Despite being disorganized, Chantal's wind speeds increased again today, and are now 65mph based on recon data. This may be in part due to an already strong pressure gradient on the northern side of the storm, exacerbated by thunderstorms.

Chantal continues to race towards the WNW at 26 mph, a speed that will continue to hinder her development. Little change in strength is expected prior to reaching Hispaniola in about 24 hours. The crossing of the Hispaniola and Cuban mountains will significantly disrupt the circulation, and still has the potential to destroy Chantal entirely. If this occurs, Chantal will move into the Bahamas as a remnant wave. However, based on numerical model guidance supporting deepening after clearing Hispaniola, and the forecasted presence of a strong low-level jet converging into the system from the SE at that time, this forecast assumes Chantal will survive. Wind shear is expected to increase in association with an upper trough as Chantal leaves Hispaniola, but will lighten as a cut-off low forms over the SE US and backs away from the system. The developing col pattern in the upper levels will be conducive for restrengthening of Chantal as she approaches the SE US.

Chantal is racing WNW along the southern periphery of a subtropical ridge, and this general motion will continue for the next 12-24 hours. A building meridional ridge axis following behind Chantal is expected to help push her more towards the NW over Hispaniola as the western flank of the subtropical ridge is being eroded by an upper low over Florida. There exists potential for serious flooding in Hispaniola as the Caribbean LLJ rides upslope into the mountains on the eastern side of Chantal. It is at this point that any pull by the mountains or reformation of Chantal's center could shift the exact forecast track in an unpredictable way, and interests in eastern Cuba and the Bahamas should be aware of this. A general NW to NNW motion is expected to bring Chantal near the northern Bahamas by Days 3 and 4, with a substantial decrease in forward speed as steering currents weaken in the face of a trough split over the SE US. The upper low resulting from this split will back westward over the north gulf coast, and ridging building north of Chantal in its wake will bend her back towards the NW or WNW towards the SE US coastline by Day 5. The forecast track is on the southern edge of the model guidance envelop through 24 hours, and on the right-hand side of the guidance envelope thereafter. Again, potentially unpredictable interactions with Hispaniola could shift the forecast track of Chantal during the next 2 days, and interests in Hispaniola, eastern Cuba, the Bahamas, and the SE US should monitor Chantal closely.



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Tropical Storm Chantal Threatens Lesser Antilles, Hispaniola, then Bahamas & SE US

By: Levi32, 2:35 AM GMT on July 09, 2013

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Invest 95L formed a closed circulation last night and was upgraded to Tropical Storm Chantal. Some slight strengthening has occurred today with thunderstorms persisting near and southeast of the center, which has been intermittently exposed. The reconnaissance aircraft mission this afternoon found flight-level winds in the NE quadrant supportive of 50mph surface winds. However, surface pressures were found to be 1010-1011mb near the center of circulation, with only weak and variable winds in the SW quadrant. This indicates that Chantal is still somewhat disorganized and weak, despite good convective organization on satellite imagery. This is likely due to the rapid trade wind flow in which Chantal is embedded, which makes it difficult to maintain a coherent circulation. While only weakly organized, Chantal is capable of producing the 50mph winds measured by the recon plane due to an already strong pressure gradient on the northern side of the storm due to a strong subtropical ridge to the north.

Chantal's WNW motion is expected to continue for the next 48 hours as she tracks along the southern periphery of the subtropical ridge. In about 48 hours, all of the models agree that Chantal will likely pass over at least a portion of Hispaniola. Flooding will be a concern for Haiti and the Dominican Republic as a result. By this time, an upper low currently over the Bahamas will be in the vicinity of southern Florida, weakening the western edge of the subtropical ridge and allow Chantal to turn more towards the northwest into the Bahamas, with a reduction in forward speed. In 72-96 hours, a longwave trough will dig into the eastern U.S. and help turn Chantal more towards the north, possibly clearing the Bahamas. In 96-120 hours, all of the models agree that a trough-split will occur, with the base of the longwave trough splitting away over the north gulf coast, allowing ridging to build back in to the northeast of Chantal. This is likely to force the storm back towards the southeastern U.S. coastline near the end of the forecast period. Exactly where this turn occurs will largely depend on the timing of the arrival of both the longwave trough and Chantal herself, and uncertainty is large at this time frame. However, a turn towards the SE US appears likely.

While upper-level winds and warm ocean temperatures support intensification of Chantal, history has shown that storms with high central pressures approaching the lesser Antilles typically continue to struggle after crossing into the Caribbean. Thus, only limited intensification is expected, and the forecast peaks Chantal at 55-60mph before hitting Hispaniola, not quite as strong as the 70mph peak currently forecasted by the NHC. The models all agree that Chantal will have significant interaction with Hispaniola in about 48 hours, which should greatly weaken the system. Thereafter, wind shear may increase due to an upper trough near the northern Bahamas, which may hinder restrengthening of Chantal in the Bahamas. However, as the trough-split occurs over the SE US, the resulting upper low over the north gulf coast will begin backing westward away from Chantal, placing the storm in a region of light upper winds in between the aforementioned upper low to the west and another one to the east. This would be a favorable outflow pattern, and Chantal is expected to restrengthen during this time as it makes a turn towards the SE US coast. Exactly how much strengthening occurs is an uncertain question, as this is still about 5 days away, and the setup then may not be exactly as it is forecasted to be now. Regardless, the Bahamas and SE US should closely monitor Chantal's progress. Hispaniola should also keep a close eye on Chantal, as serious flooding could result from heavy rains as her circulation passes over the island in about 48 hours.



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95L Almost a Tropical Storm but Likely to Remain Weak for Now

By: Levi32, 7:35 PM GMT on July 07, 2013

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94L In GOM Not A Development Threat - 95L in Central Atlantic to be Watched

By: Levi32, 8:01 PM GMT on July 06, 2013

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Watching Wet Gulf of Mexico Through Weekend, Focus Shifts East for Mid-Late July

By: Levi32, 4:54 PM GMT on July 04, 2013

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Watching GOM through Thursday, Bahamas Next Week, Central Atlantic July 10+

By: Levi32, 12:50 AM GMT on July 03, 2013

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About Levi32

Levi Cowan has been tracking tropical systems since 2002, and is currently working on his bachelor's degree in physics at UAF.

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MesoWest NERRS METEOROLOGICAL SITE AT KAC AK US
Fritz Creek, AK
Elevation: 32 ft
Temperature: 38.0 °F
Dew Point: 34.0 °F
Humidity: 85%
Wind: 13.0 mph from the NNE
Wind Gust: 19.0 mph
Updated: 1:30 AM AKST on December 28, 2014
Overlooking Peterson Bay
Homer, AK
Elevation: 27 ft
Temperature: -39.3 °F
Dew Point: -55.3 °F
Humidity: 37%
Wind: Calm
Wind Gust: 0.0 mph
Updated: 1:39 PM AKST on December 10, 2014
RAWS HOMER AK US
Homer, AK
Elevation: 854 ft
Temperature: 36.0 °F
Dew Point: 24.0 °F
Humidity: 62%
Wind: 4.0 mph from the North
Wind Gust: 8.0 mph
Updated: 1:54 AM AKST on December 28, 2014

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