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After Emily, what next?

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 8:07 PM GMT on July 20, 2005

A strong tropical wave is kicking up showers and thunderstorms over Hispanolia and the waters to the north of the island. This wave has some decent deep convection, but no signs of a circulation yet. It is moving WNW towards the Bahamas at about 15 mph, and could become a tropical depression Thursday.

The wave is currently in an area of relatively high shear; the University of Wisconsin's Wind shear analysis from 2pm EDT today (18 GMT) shows an area of 20 knots of shear over the wave. The visible satellite loop shows this shear is acting to rip away the high level cirrus clouds from the tropical wave and blow them to the east.

Lower shear values, 5-10 knots, lie ahead of the wave, so it is possible it will develop into a tropical depression Thursday as it moves into the Bahamas. A Hurricane Hunter airplane will investigate the wave then, if neccessary. Today's 12Z run of the GFS model takes the wave and develops it into a tropical depression by Friday. The depression then weakens and recurves out to sea past North Carolina on Saturday, when a short wave trough and associated cold front move off the East Coast. At this time, the tropical wave does not appear likely to be another Dennis or Emily!

Jeff Masters

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

Good analysis!!

So often I see every cluster of thunderstorms hyped to become the next Hurricane on sites like this.

Nice to see whats out there with a very level-headed analysis!
the forecasters here in orlando don't seem too worried and hell they hyped emily here until it finally hit the Yucatan
Mr. Masters, where are all the want-a-be forecasters now....refering to emily making landfall into Texas (or whether its landfall was south of Cozumel or over Cozumel). Nobody is perfect but the NHC and you sure give some insight that helps everyone no matter who is right on the button.
Thanks for the great information Jeff. You and Steve have very imformative blogs.
I wonder if here on the GA coast we will get a little weather out of this.
It would appear some of models are doing different things with the system (best I can tell... I don't claim to be great at this. In fact I could be totally wrong). The ETA shows it dissipating before Florida, and the GFS appears to take it back out into the Atlantic. Neither one really shows it organizing much.
All being said.....lets not let our guard down and be fooled by this wave, these waves can do some strange things and remember simply because it is not a hurricane does not mean flooding and other hazards are not possible it does not take a Cat 4 hurricane to cause damage!
Thanks for your expert analysis, Dr. Masters. It is so refreshing to find a forecaster that does not "ramp it up" when analyzing a cluster of thunderstorms!!!!! Some of the TV "hands" get a "kick" out of scaring people it seems!!
I really have to say this one of THE best blogs I've been too. Even my stupid questions were answered and I learned so much. I have to say most of my "weather" knowledge is by watching nature and the clouds, so my "scientific" side of my brain was truly challenged over the last couple of days.
I really learned so much and it helped me deal with Emily which gratefully did NOT come to Houston. Thanks Dr. Masters this place rocks.
Good site... mostly good posters, watched and read during Dennis and Emily and there are some real good weather minds on here. Look for more of me in the next coming months as the hurricane season gets into full swing (as if it hasnt already).
EmmyRose, this Jersey Village girl agrees with you! I didn't have much to say, but I learned sooo much from reading all the comments. Even the controversial comments were fun to read! I've been "watching the clouds" for over 30 years, and since I moved to the Houston area in 1982, I've been watching for hurricanes. Alicia in '83 scared me to death, and I'm sure we are overdue for another one.
Thanks to everyone for all the input!
JV - good to know there are other "cloud readers" - Houston couldn't even deal with TD Allison let alone another hurricane -
Heat Index tomorrow in Houston 109 degrees -
EmmyRose,thankfully, we were in one of the very few dry spots during TS Allison. We may not be so lucky the next time. I believe all our construction going on doesn't help!!! 109 Heat Index?? I'm staying inside away from the mosquitos!
Believe me, even the mosquitos will be too hot to do anything tomorrow LOL
True! lol I hear the mosquito spraying truck as we speak, so maybe I'm in luck. Until the next storm...

Dr. Masters,
All I can say is WOW, and thanks. I live in Corpus Christi and keep an eye on the tropics for a good part of the year. Your information was right on, excellent, superb, etc, etc, etc. This site and this blog will be on my daily web regiment. Thanks again for taking the time to help us be informed.
Thank you so much for the information you give. I am in the UK and until my daughter moved to the US in 2003 I knew nothing about hurricanes at all and only knew about the English weather. This year she married an American meteorologist who is in the US navy. As he is away until September your blog helps me to watch what is happening with the weather in the US. Thanks :-)
why cant we get back on todays session on td #6?
is anyone stuck like i am.........
tropical depression 6 is easy to forecast...look at the trough digging down from the north this should force topical depression 6 to move ne and bother only the fish...the one im concerned about is the system in the caribbean...thats the one that could hit la miss ala fla panhandle..ther is no high out there anymore we are wide open for a strike here...
hey weatherboy ive been trying to follow your discussion on the 2 T.D.s to the south well one south one east but im am not finding some of the maps and radar images that you and some other's are talking about....maybe you could point me in the right direction, and tell me what im looking at in them??
the outflow from the disturbance in the caribbean is becoming more pronounced and the only reason it hasnt strengthened yet is tropicla depression 6 is to close to it..once 6 moves out you are going to see rapid strengthing with this system and deep development as time goes on...this system will be the g storm and this one couls affect some part of the northern or eastern gulf coast by monday or tuesday...
i want to stress this is only my opinion not the nhc ...i just want to make that clear..no i think the models went out to lunch once again...they have this storm making a loop and on the east side of fla tuesday...i wonder dont they see the strong trought o the north digging in...teses models have been drinking and not water..
a new update i just observed......look at around 19.5 n 81.0w you can see a very concentrated area of thunderstorm activity which if you look closely on water vapor charts is starting to develop a counter clockwise circulation...keep your eyes on this area they already have the strong outflow and the high above the system....this site is the nhc im talking about...
whats wrong with these blogs.......
what problem are you having?
not same blog I was on...or is it....
what one were you on rocket
this one...but it dropped jeffs afternoon blog along with alot of post....
keep having problems getting to these blogs.....the one earlier with Dr. Masters from 5pm, i cant get there....
stormtop, did you get the UCF track?
whew...i thought i was the only one having problems getting back to the blogs...glad to know im not alone

that was a good one going too...fsu
ok i just came on a few hours ago..i have been watching the caribbean all day..
it has some neat stuff... you ought to see it when theres a powerful hurricane brewing.....it gets more detailed..
yes and i think its a joke...tropical dep 6 will bother only the fish...once that happens the other disturbance in the caribbean will get its act together and become a rcognizable force threatning the gulf coast on late monday oe early tuesday...this is only from my opinion but i expect rapid strengthing on the one in the caribbean once 6 moves out the way....
lol..yea it does.Like with Emily..we had gut feelers,nature watchers,meteorolical,and climatological predictions being made on that one......and alot of speculators ,wishers and guessers.....LOL
I lost a "G"....somewhere...
theres a new blog from mr. masters check it out
This TD could be like Jeanne? By the way all systems have made landfall so far in the Atlantic! Any Weather buffs know when the most tropical systems made the most landfall?.....
Umm td 6 is very much like jeanne and that trough shoudnt budge the ridge being that we are now in late july not december,and shuold loop into florida and whats scary is that wave down in the carribean coulb a florida panhandle/al/ms storm.
the bermuda high will be to strong and thus TS Franklin should follow a similar path to jeanne also,it is offcially franklin now from the nhc so stop calling it td 6 lol only 2 hours as a td this could be undergoing fairly rapid deeping and there is now a burst of deep convetion in the semi eyewall if you could call it an eyewall.
I am going to work out I will discuss later also I will being checking in as franklin IS a threat to florida.
yes that was a riot in here...
ok jed take it light...
jed you might be right according the latest satellite water vapor loop that trough is really moving south to fast it could miss the storm all together and then i can finally agree with the computer about the loop east of florida bringing it on shore in florida..this is the first time i ever saw a computer do a loop de loop on a forecast..i can see that happening if the trough misses it...this is really getting interesting..
STORMTOP- So where do you think these storms are going?
Tropical Storm Franklin, is going to be interesting. These are the ones I love, no one knows where it is going to go because the steering currents arn't SET. Yet, it either won't affect us or it will be weak from cooling the water itself staying in roughly the same position for a few hours. I think the NHC has got it right..will get stuck for a day or two then start moving NE or E depending upon how strong that high builds.