Colin takes aim at Bermuda; the Great Russian Heat Wave of 2010: 102°F in Moscow

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:45 PM GMT on August 06, 2010

A reborn Tropical Storm Colin is taking aim at Bermuda, and should bring tropical storm force winds to the island by Saturday afternoon. Colin continues to pass through an unfavorable environment for development--an upper-level low pressure system with dry air and high wind shear. High wind shear of 20 - 25 knots has exposed the surface circulation to view, as seen in recent satellite imagery. Colin's heavy thunderstorm activity is all on the east side of the storm, and the associated rains can now be seen approaching the island on Bermuda radar.

Forecast for Colin
The latest SHIPS model forecast predicts that wind shear will drop to the low to moderate range, 5 - 15 knots, tonight through Saturday afternoon. This relaxation of shear prompts the intensity models to predict that Colin will strengthen to a 50 - 70 mph tropical storm by Sunday. With the forecast path of the storm predicted to take Colin just west of Bermuda, the island will be in the strong right front quadrant of the storm, and may see wind gusts in excess of hurricane force, 74 mph. After its encounter with Bermuda, Colin will head towards Newfoundland, and it is possible the storm could bring tropical storm force winds to the island on Monday. However, wind shear will be on the increase again beginning Saturday night, and it is unlikely Colin will be a hurricane when it makes it closest approach to Newfoundland.

Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Colin.

A tropical wave (Invest 93) about 700 miles west of the Cape Verdes Islands off the coast of Africa is moving northwest at 10 mph. Wind shear is a moderate 10 - 20 knots over 93L, which is low enough to allow some slow development. This system currently does not appear to be a concern to any land areas over the next seven days. NHC is giving a 40% chance of this disturbance developing into a tropical depression by Sunday morning. The GFS and NOGAPS models predict 93L will become a tropical depression.

Figure 2. Smoke from fires in Russia on August 4 covers an area over 3,000 km (1860 miles) across. If the smoke were in the United States, it would extend approximately from San Francisco to Chicago. Visibility in Moscow dropped to 20 meters (0.01 miles) on August 4, and health officials warned that everyone, including healthy people, needed to take preventative measures such as staying indoors or wearing a mask outdoors. Image credit: NASA.

The Great Russian Heat Wave of 2010 continues
One of the most remarkable weather events of my lifetime is unfolding this summer in Russia, where an unprecedented heat wave has brought another day of 102°F heat to the nation's capital. At 3:30 pm local time today, the mercury hit 39°C (102.2°F) at Moscow's Domodedovo Airport. Moscow had never recorded a temperature exceeding 100°F prior to this year, and today marks the second time the city has beaten the 100°F mark. The first time was on July 29, when the Moscow observatory recorded 100.8°C and Baltschug, another official downtown Moscow weather site, hit an astonishing 102.2°F (39.0°C). Prior to this year, the hottest temperature in Moscow's history was 37.2°C (99°F), set in August 1920. The Moscow Observatory has now matched or exceeded this 1920 all-time record five times in the past eleven days, including today. The 2010 average July temperature in Moscow was 7.8°C (14°F) above normal, smashing the previous record for hottest July, set in 1938 (5.3°C above normal.) July 2010 also set the record for most July days in excess of 30°C--twenty-two. The previous record was 13 such days, set in July 1972. The past 24 days in a row have exceeded 30°C in Moscow, and there is no relief in sight--the latest forecast for Moscow calls for high temperatures near 100°F (37.8°C) for the next seven days. It is stunning to me that the country whose famous winters stopped the armies of Napoleon and Hitler is experiencing day after day of heat near 100°F, with no end in sight.

Thousands of deaths, severe fires, and the threat of radioactive contamination
The extreme heat has led to thousands of premature deaths in Russia. According to Yevgenia Smirnova, an official from the Moscow registry office, "We recorded 14,340 deaths in Moscow in July, that is 4,824 deaths more than in July, 2009." Undoubtedly thousands of additional premature deaths have occurred in the rest of Russia as a result of the heat. The heat has also caused the worst drought conditions in European Russia in a half-century, prompting the Russian government to suspend wheat exports. The drought has caused extreme fire danger over most of European Russia (Figure 3), and fires in Russia have killed at least 50 people in the past week and leveled thousands of homes. The fires are the worst since 1972, when massive forest and peat bog fires burned an area of 100,000 square km and killed at 104 people in the Moscow region alone. Smoke from the current fires spans a region over 3,000 km (1,860 miles) from east to west, approximately the distance from San Francisco to Chicago. Dozens of flights were canceled at Moscow's airports today, thanks to visibilities of 300 meters in smoke. Also of concern is fires that have hit the Bryansk region of western Russia, which suffered radioactive contamination from the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in nearby Ukraine. There are fears that fires may burn through the contaminated area, releasing harmful radiation into the atmosphere.

Figure 3. Fire danger in Russia for August 5, 2010. Extreme fire danger (Category 5, red colors) was seen over much of the European portion of Russia. Image credit: Hydrometcentre, Russia.

Why has Russia's heat wave been so long and intense?
Dr. Rob Carver has done a detailed analysis of the remarkable Russian heat wave in his latest post, The Great Russian Heat Wave of July 2010. A persistent jet stream pattern has set up over Europe, thanks to a phenomena known as blocking. A ridge of high pressure has remained anchored over Russia, and the hot and dry conditions have created helped intensify this ridge in a positive feedback loop. As a result, soil moisture in some portions of European Russia has dropped to levels one would expect only once every 500 years.

Next update
I'll have an update on Saturday morning.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting StormW:

Still the same...the "apparent" circulation center, which matches up with the 850mb vorticity, is just north of the coastline.

It's possible it could have a chance, if it gains latitude if it makes it to the BOC.

Yeah, It looks as if the actual low level circulation is just north of the coast down around 16 degees North.
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i keep hitting ignore user for one person but they keep showing up in the comments anyway what am i doing wrong
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I will make my vote for NW

Quoting StormW:
Look right at the coastline...the center is moving...which direction?

92L visible loop
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Las altas temperaturas que se esperaban para el día de hoy han comenzado a disiparse gracias a un cambio en la dirección del viento más temprano de lo que se esperaba.

Aunque en horas de la mañana se registró una temperatura de 92 grados Fahrenheit en el área de San Juan, a mediodía la temperatura había bajado a 89 grados, indicó la meteoróloga del Servicio Nacional de Meteorología (SNM), Odalys Martínez.Im burning :O
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455. SLU

LATM12 = 15.0N LONM12 = 82.3W DIRM12 = 302DEG SPDM12 = 12KT
LATM24 = 14.0N LONM24 = 80.8W
RD34NE = 0NM RD34SE = 0NM RD34SW = 0NM RD34NW = 0NM

Not enough time left.
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i still see 18n 82w for 92l. i see a spin there. i fear it has more time than some may think. i also see movement to the wnw or nw. but i am no met. nor am i very good at prediction:) just going by what i see on visible.
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Quoting Tazmanian:


haha Taz, you're funny. ;)
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Quoting StormW:
Look right at the coastline...the center is moving...which direction?

92L visible loop

Looks W/WNW in direction... Definately not a true WNW... 275 to 280 degrees???
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Looks like a wnw to me
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Just reading back, thanks for the info Storm and Levi. I'm just getting back on. Had the AT&T Uverse repair guy here, took him 3 hours to figure out what was wrong with the incoming fiber optic signal.

Is 92L lookingt as though it will go through the channel or taking a short cut overland?
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Looks like WNW to me.

Looks between WNW and NW.
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personally i think coc of 92L is around 16.8N/82.3W, jmo.slowly drifting NW
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Quoting StormW:
Look right at the coastline...the center is moving...which direction?

92L visible loop
Looks like WNW to me.
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
No, he didn't. Check it out here.

What the heck is that doing there? It needs to be adjusted south by about 20 degrees.
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Quoting Jeff9641:

You must have drawn that there.
No, he didn't. Check it out here.
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Quoting xcool:

Actually looks more like NW, but it has acquired a more northerly component in the last hour or so.
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Quoting Jeff9641:

It's got a short window. 92L is more impressive with convection and could pose a western Gulf threat down the road.
92L is moving towards the WNW and into the Yucatan later tonight/tomorrow morning. So whatever circulation it has will get disrupted by the Yucatan. We shall see but I'm not anticipating development.

Looks can be deceiving, in reality nothing is going on at the surface with 92L...Colin has a well-defined closed surface circulation.
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Current Conditions

Owen Roberts Airportgrand Cayman, Cayman Islands (Airport)
Updated: 25 min 43 sec ago

29 °C
Partly Cloudy
Humidity: 80%
Dew Point: 26 °C
Wind: 11 km/h / from the SSW

Wind Gust: -
Pressure: 1014 hPa
Visibility: 10.0 kilometers
UV: 5 out of 16
Scattered Clouds 300 m
Mostly Cloudy 7500 m
(Above Ground Level)
Elevation: 3 m

We here in Grand Cayman winds are out of the SSW that are gradually becoming more WSW, wouldn't that be an indication that 92L might be acquiring a closed surface low albeit weak!
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Quoting CybrTeddy:

Think I found the answer, Hurricane Claudette in 1991 was a Category 4 hurricane that formed out of a non-tropical system.

Hurricane Ella, 1978. 140mph winds. Originating from a cold front.

That appears to be the answer to your question, slightly stronger than Claudette (though that was a deeper storm).
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Quoting StormW:
92L 16N;85.2W

Are your thoughts on 92L the same as they where on your update? Do you think it has a chance in the BOC?
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Quoting BahaHurican:
Afternoon all.

Wow... the Russian heat story is amazing. This is why when I hear pple talking about how there can't be GW because it was so cold last winter where they are in FL, I have to laugh. By that standard of reasoning, to all those Russians, yes there is, too, GW.... If ur going to argue for or against this global and long-term trend, u can't take one summer or one winter in one part of the world to prove your point. To put it another way, we've had very few days over 90 degrees here this summer, and we usually get quite a few in the low 90s during July. It would actually make sense to leave Russia [polar] and come to the Bahamas [tropics] in order to cool off....

Very true. When looking at the global average climate you certainly can't concentrate on one region and draw broad conclusions. For instance, look at the recent extreme cold in South America that's claimed hundreds of lives. Brazilian snowstorms are the worst in ten years, and Argentina is importing heating energy at record levels it it endures its coldest winter in 40 years. Not that you'll hear much about that on this blog or in the mainstream media...
I'm wondering now if the fact that there is so much abnormal heat near the polar regions is having an impact on hurricane formation.... if hurricanes are a mechanism used by the earth to balance heat in the atmosphere, wouldn't that mechanism slow or shut down when it's abnormally warm near the poles? Just a thought.

It's at a minimum interesting that the Southern Hemisphere cooling sort of balances out the Northern Hemisphere heating, even as to total sea ice extent. A bit earlier this year global sea ice was above the arbitrary baseline currently being used as "normal".
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429. xcool
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Quoting weathermanwannabe:
343. sammywammybamy 1:53 PM EDT on August 06, 2010

Don't know where you are located but count your blessings and hope that it takes another 18 years before it happens again (to anyone impacted by a major storm);
amen to that! i don't mind a small weak storm, but, everything gets scattered in a major hurricane. it's not just property people lose. even if people don't die they still get displaced and some like me realize that we will never get our life back the way it was on aug.28th. my family is all over the place now. we used to be close, but now we never see each other and hardly have the time to talk due to new jobs and longer hours. my daughter still cries about it, and that makes me sad. our new home is nice, but its just don't feel like home. i know this might make some mad, but i want this season to be a bust. i want fish storms. it's better that way. i also wouldn't mind getting something just a bit stronger than bonnie. i think i got a wind gust of 4mph.:)i wouldn't mind some 30 mph. winds and some scattered showers. i am also trying really hard to learn on here what makes these systems form or fall apart, and what to look at to understand steering, and the things that affect steering. i would also love to know some hard facts about the highs and fronts, and troughs, and how they are formed and what steers them. if i could figure all that stuff out i think i could make my own educated opinion and not worry about what i hear. i get freaked out when i think something can get into the gulf and i would like to end the stress:)
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We found the circulation...pressure at 1007.9mb.

URNT15 KNHC 061820
AF306 0304A COLIN HDOB 16 20100806
181030 2734N 06629W 9773 00274 0083 +252 +182 228024 025 033 001 00
181100 2735N 06630W 9774 00273 0082 +250 +186 232022 023 031 001 03
181130 2736N 06631W 9773 00272 0080 +252 +190 232018 019 028 003 00
181200 2738N 06632W 9772 00272 0080 +250 +193 233017 017 027 004 00
181230 2739N 06633W 9773 00273 0079 +253 +195 235015 015 027 003 03
181300 2740N 06634W 9772 00273 0080 +251 +197 228012 012 024 003 00
181330 2741N 06635W 9773 00272 0080 +250 +198 221010 011 026 001 03
181400 2742N 06637W 9773 00273 0081 +250 +199 225007 008 024 002 00
181430 2743N 06638W 9771 00275 0082 +247 +200 224005 006 026 001 00
181500 2744N 06639W 9773 00274 0082 +245 +201 213005 006 026 001 00
181530 2746N 06640W 9771 00277 0083 +245 +201 212004 006 024 003 00
181600 2747N 06642W 9772 00276 0084 +246 +202 225003 004 026 002 00
181630 2748N 06643W 9771 00279 0085 +245 +202 163003 004 025 002 00
181700 2749N 06644W 9773 00277 0087 +245 +202 196001 002 025 002 00
181730 2750N 06646W 9772 00279 0087 +246 +202 130001 003 022 004 00
181800 2751N 06647W 9773 00279 0089 +241 +202 112004 005 023 004 00
181830 2752N 06648W 9773 00281 0091 +240 +201 107004 005 024 002 03
181900 2753N 06649W 9768 00286 0091 +239 +199 134006 007 /// /// 03
181930 2754N 06648W 9775 00278 0090 +239 +198 135008 009 025 002 00
182000 2756N 06647W 9773 00278 0088 +240 +196 143011 012 024 002 00
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Quoting Jeff9641:

Yeah like TX to LA threat. I am more concerned with 92L as the GFS was blowing this up a few days ago. Makes wonder if that may really happen in a few days.

At this point I wouldn't mind a weak system *if* it moves on through.
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Quoting Jeff9641:

I said shear is high now and Colin doesn't look good. Shear may drop later but the trough moving off NE will stretch him out then RIP.
Colin will turn extraropical beyond 72 hours. Starting tonight ridging will develop in the upper levels causing Colin to be surrounded by favorable upper level winds. So tonight through Sunday Colin will be able to intensify as much as it pleases. Category 1 still seems very likely considering that the NHC takes it to a 70mph TS.
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Quoting WaterWitch11:
levi32, is there anything to the system in the caribbean?

Levi is still probably checking out the Holiday Inn Express commercials ou YouTube!!! LOL

IMO the area in the NW Caribbean is interesting, but will more than likely run out of water and time before it can really develop.
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39.0 knots (~ 44.8 mph)
Tropical Storm

still pretty good winds found sofar in Colin
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415. FLHL2
Quoting unf97:
Bastardi is inclined in thinking that we could see something develop either in the Northern GOM or off the SE coast on the stalled frontal boundary which will be draped across North FL during the weekend.

ECMWF OOZ run picked up on the vorticity of this. Interesting. It shows it making a southward circle, crossing central Florida, then into the gulf and back out through the Carolinas. One big loop de loop. Shows this impacting Florida Sun/Mon
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nice anti-cyclone to the south of 92l,its forecast to move north and stregthen a bit over the next 12-24hrs,our next, td i do believe,moving nnw towards the yuc channel...-
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Quoting sammywammybamy:

South Palm beach County.

Interesting, I hadn't realized Alex was the name that replaced Andrew.
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Quoting Jeff9641:

Appears to be moving NNW toward the Yucatan Channel.

Yep. May be a threat to the GOMEX coastline in its future.
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Dr. Masters co-founded wunderground in 1995. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters 1986-1990. Co-blogging with him: Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

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