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An Atlantic tropical wave worth watching

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 2:46 PM GMT on October 04, 2009

A large tropical wave near 9N 40W, midway between Africa and the Lesser Antilles Islands, is generating a considerable amount of heavy thunderstorm activity as it moves west to west-northwest at 15 mph. The wave is under about 10 - 15 knots of wind shear, and this morning's QuikSCAT pass showed a large and disorganized region of converging winds in the region, with top winds of 25 mph. There is very little dry air in the vicinity, and conditions appear favorable for some slow development of this wave. None of the computer models develop the wave, but they do show relatively low wind shear along the wave's path for the next five days. The wave should reach the Lesser Antilles Islands by Wednesday.

Figure 1. The large tropical wave in the middle Atlantic.

In the Philippines, Tropical Storm Parma continues to linger offshore the northern tip of the Philippines' Luzon Island, bringing heavy rain. The storm has been blamed for the deaths of 17 people in the Philippines, but has not not had the devastating impact that was earlier feared. Parma's heaviest rains will stay offshore of the Philippines today (Figure 2).

Figure 2. Forecast rain amounts for Parma for the 24-hour period ending at 06 UTC October 5 (2am EDT Monday). This forecast is based on satellite measurements of Parma's current rainfall rate, plus a projection of the storm's path. Four to eight inches of rain (yellow colors) is expected along the extreme northwest tip of Luzon Island. Image credit: NOAA Satellite Services Division.

Super Typhoon Melor hits Cat 5 strength
Super Typhoon Melor has become the second Category 5 tropical cyclone of the year. Melor is expected to recurve to the north pass just south of the coast of Japan later this week.

Jeff Masters


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