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Ophelia temporarily strengthens

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 1:42 PM GMT on September 22, 2011

Tropical Storm Ophelia passed just south of buoy 41041 early this morning, and the sustained winds of 60 mph measured at the buoy were a bit of a surprise, given the storm's sheared appearance on satellite imagery. Ophelia is showing the classic appearance of a tropical storm experiencing high wind shear. The low level center of circulation is exposed to view, and the storm's heavy thunderstorms have been pushed to the northeast side of the center of circulation. An analysis from the University of Wisconsin CIMMS group shows a high 20 - 25 knots of wind shear due to strong upper level southwesterly winds. Water vapor satellite images show a large area of dry air to the the west of Ophelia, and the strong upper level west-southwesterly winds bringing high wind shear to the storm are also injecting dry air into the storm's core, interfering with development. Ophelia will be passing north of buoy 41040 Friday morning, and the Hurricane Hunters will be making their first flight into Ophelia on Friday morning.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Ophelia showing the low-level center exposed to view, with all the storm's heavy thunderstorms pushed to the northeast side.

Forecast for Ophelia
The latest SHIPS model forecast predicts that Ophelia will experience moderate to high wind shear of 10 - 25 knots over the next five days, and will move into a region with drier air. The combination of shear and dry air should keep Ophelia from strengthening, and is likely to weaken the storm. However, the models have backed off on calling for outright dissipation of Ophelia this weekend, as some were calling for in their runs yesterday. Ophelia is having some trouble disentangling itself from a band of heavy thunderstorms to its south, associated with the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). This has likely kept the storm a little to the south of the expected track. Ophelia should begin moving more to the northwest by Friday, when the ridge of high pressure steering it westwards weakens. This should make the core of the storm miss the Northern Lesser Antilles. These islands could see some wind gusts of 30 - 40 mph and a few heavy rain squalls from Ophelia on Sunday, but the islands will be on Ophelia's weaker (dry) side, limiting the potential for adverse weather. At longer ranges, Ophelia may pass close to Bermuda as early as Wednesday, since a large cut-off low pressure system over the Eastern U.S. should turn Ophelia to the northwest and then north early next week. Ophelia may eventually be a threat to Canada, but it is too early to assess the odds of this happening.

Elsewhere in the tropics
In the Eastern Pacific, Tropical Storm Hilary is expected to intensify into a hurricane and bring heavy rains of 3 - 5 inches to coastal Mexico as the storm moves parallel to the coast, about 150 miles offshore. Hilary may turn north and affect Baja 7 - 10 days now, but it is too early to lay odds on this. In the far eastern Atlantic, a tropical wave that emerged from the coast of Africa this morning is predicted by the GFS and NOGAPS models to develop into a tropical depression early next week. Steering currents favor a west-northwest to northwest track early next week for this disturbance.


Figure 2. NASA posted a spectacular movie yesterday of the Aurora Australis taken by the International Space Station. The rippling green curtains of the aurora as the space station zooms overhead are amazing!

Jeff Masters

Hurricane

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

WOW! TD?
Good morning. I think we need to watch this closely. Looks very healthy.



Quoting Gearsts:
By the NHC? no
will it be called a cat 5 at the 8pm advisory? yesterday it had the deep red ring but now it dissapred. i think she became a cat 5 yesterday
Quoting wunderweatherman123:
will it be called a cat 5 at the 8pm advisory? yesterday it had the deep red ring but now it dissapred. i think she became a cat 5 yesterday
Dont think so.
Quoting stormwatcherCI:
Good morning. I think we need to watch this closely. Looks very healthy.






yes this disturbance looks very strong
this disturbance could become a tropical depression
Quoting Gearsts:
WOW! TD?



not even close
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
~



the disturbance in the coast of africa its bigger than ophelia
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:


Naked circulation from the shear.... not looking good for O
Quoting Tazmanian:



not even close
Well i think it has a close coc but lets see if it can maintain convection.
do u guys think hilary peaked out? im going with 150mph as the peak
Quoting strong2011storm:
~



the disturbance in the coast of africa its bigger than ophelia
and nothing will happen with it like all the other stroms this year
Quoting BOGUSTRACK:
and nothing will happen with it like all the other stroms this year
LOL WUT? I wont say anything else -_-
Quoting BOGUSTRACK:
and nothing will happen with it like all the other stroms this year


yes you are right
Quoting Tazmanian:



poof



loool yeah poof
Quoting Skyepony:
A study of the MJO & it's origins in the Indian Ocean is underway.


More about it here: nsf.gov

And here: Dynamo project
ADT and SAB/TAFB support an intensity of 130 knots, or 155 mph. Hilary will likely become a Category 5 hurricane later on today, before conditions began to deteriorate.

Beautiful. Can't wait for vis.

And we're following and obsessed with tracking a stupid storm like Ophelia why???????

A Bogus track is so true. Not going to effect anything, and a weak piece of garbage storm.
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
ADT and SAB/TAFB support an intensity of 130 knots, or 155 mph. Hilary will likely become a Category 5 hurricane later on today, before conditions began to deteriorate.

Beautiful. Can't wait for vis.


Lopsided. She ain't gonna make cat 5.
Quoting BOGUSTRACK:
and nothing will happen with it like all the other stroms this year

Exactly.

"Hey Guys, there's this impressive wave (NHC give it 10%) coming off the coast of Africa right now....and the 06Z GFS is suggesting a major bearing down on Florida after 384 hours!!!!!!!!!"
TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
800 AM EDT FRI SEP 23 2011

FOR THE NORTH ATLANTIC...CARIBBEAN SEA AND THE GULF OF MEXICO...

THE NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER IS ISSUING ADVISORIES ON TROPICAL
STORM OPHELIA...LOCATED ABOUT 740 MILES EAST-SOUTHEAST OF THE
LEEWARD ISLANDS.

A BROAD LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM LOCATED ABOUT 400 MILES SOUTH-SOUTHEAST
OF THE CAPE VERDE ISLANDS IS PRODUCING WIDESPREAD CLOUDINESS...AND
SCATTERED SHOWERS AND A FEW THUNDERSTORMS. UPPER-LEVEL WINDS ARE
CONDUCIVE FOR SOME SLOW DEVELOPMENT OF THIS DISTURBANCE OVER THE
NEXT FEW DAYS AS IT MOVES WESTWARD AT 10 TO 15 MPH. THIS SYSTEM HAS
A LOW CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING
THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

ELSEWHERE...TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE
NEXT 48 HOURS.



Quoting cat5hurricane:
And we're following and obsessed with tracking a stupid storm like Ophelia why???????

A Bogus track is so true. Not going to effect anything, and a weak piece of garbage storm.
Cause this is a weather blog and thats what most do here and theres not much else to track in the atlantic.You shouldn't ask why we are tracking a storm in this blog lol
Quoting cat5hurricane:

Lopsided. She ain't gonna make cat 5.


She's not lopsided...?
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
ADT and SAB/TAFB support an intensity of 130 knots, or 155 mph. Hilary will likely become a Category 5 hurricane later on today, before conditions began to deteriorate.

Beautiful. Can't wait for vis.




go hillaryyy !!!!!!!!!!!!!

she will be a cat 5
Quoting Gearsts:
Cause this is a weather blog and thats what most do here and theres not much else to track in the atlantic.You shouldn't ask why we are tracking a storm in this blog lol

What about Hilary? How's our buddy in Japan doing?
Quoting cat5hurricane:
And we're following and obsessed with tracking a stupid storm like Ophelia why???????

A Bogus track is so true. Not going to effect anything, and a weak piece of garbage storm.


This gave me my laugh for the morning. "...a weak piece of garbage storm." It's refreshing to hear somebody get mad at a storm instead of picking on other bloggers.
Quoting Tazmanian:
TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
800 AM EDT FRI SEP 23 2011

FOR THE NORTH ATLANTIC...CARIBBEAN SEA AND THE GULF OF MEXICO...

THE NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER IS ISSUING ADVISORIES ON TROPICAL
STORM OPHELIA...LOCATED ABOUT 740 MILES EAST-SOUTHEAST OF THE
LEEWARD ISLANDS.

A BROAD LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM LOCATED ABOUT 400 MILES SOUTH-SOUTHEAST
OF THE CAPE VERDE ISLANDS IS PRODUCING WIDESPREAD CLOUDINESS...AND
SCATTERED SHOWERS AND A FEW THUNDERSTORMS. UPPER-LEVEL WINDS ARE
CONDUCIVE FOR SOME SLOW DEVELOPMENT OF THIS DISTURBANCE OVER THE
NEXT FEW DAYS AS IT MOVES WESTWARD AT 10 TO 15 MPH. THIS SYSTEM HAS
A LOW CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING
THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

ELSEWHERE...TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE
NEXT 48 HOURS.



I smell new invest soon ^^
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


She's not lopsided...?

She's already beginning to slow her forward progress, and deepest convection is already waning. She's peaked already. EWRC is imminent. Then down she goes.

Next please.
Quoting Gearsts:
I smell new invest soon ^^



needs too be 20%
Quoting cat5hurricane:

She's already beginning to slow her forward progress, and deepest convection is already waning. She's peaked already. EWRC is imminent. Then down she goes.

Next please.
Quoting Gearsts:

Ha!! LMAO
Quoting cat5hurricane:

She's already beginning to slow her forward progress, and deepest convection is already waning. She's peaked already. EWRC is imminent. Then down she goes.

Next please.


I doubt she has peaked, she is just having minor fluctuations in strength, as the NHC noted that she would. She still has today to strengthen.
ugh too late
Quoting Tazmanian:



can you plzs stop : Quoteing him or here i got here on ignore


You can't ask somebody to ignore other person just because YOU have him on ignore.
Quoting Tazmanian:
ugh too late
Oh sorry Taz
not sure what you guys are looking at i think your looking at some in like 1 or 2 days old












she is well fromed and vary well fromed eye
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


You can't ask somebody to ignore other person just because YOU have him on ignore.




what evere
Quoting Gearsts:
Oh sorry Taz



thats ok
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
ADT and SAB/TAFB support an intensity of 130 knots, or 155 mph. Hilary will likely become a Category 5 hurricane later on today, before conditions began to deteriorate.

Beautiful. Can't wait for vis.

,notice the light green that surrounds the eyewall,cat 5 next advisory,no doubt a classic
Hilary looking great this morning! I think it's very close to category 5, but the unpredictable EWRC could occur at anytime.

Off to school.
Quoting Tazmanian:




DONT PUT WORDS IN MY MOUTH I DID NOT ASK ANY ONE TOO PUT HERE ON ignore YOU THIS LIKE MAKEING UP WORD AND SAYING THING THAT I DID NOT EVEN SAY YOU NEED TOO LARN TOO READ MY COMMETS BE FOR YOU POST OR SAY ANY THING BACK TOO ME


You really going to yell at me?

Maybe YOU need to go back and read your comment ;)
Quoting Tazmanian:




DONT PUT WORDS IN MY MOUTH I DID NOT ASK ANY ONE TOO PUT HERE ON ignore YOU THIS LIKE MAKEING UP WORD AND SAYING THING THAT I DID NOT EVEN SAY YOU NEED TOO LARN TOO READ MY COMMETS BE FOR YOU POST OR SAY ANY THING BACK TOO ME
Easy there Taz chill (^_^)
Well, I'm off to the place called High School.

T.G.I.F
2011SEP23 114500
15.91 102.05
T 7.0
923.5 hPa
140.0
Final T number 6.8
Adjusted T number 6.7
Eaw T number 6.7

looks like at least the NHC will give it 6.5 Dvorak intensity.. (130 knots)

Quoting cat5hurricane:

Lopsided. She ain't gonna make cat 5.
How is it lopsided?

You're starting to look like a troll. No signs of an EWRC, at least yet.
Philippines Atmospheric Geophysical Astronomical Services and Administration
Tropical Cyclone Outlook
5:00 PM PhST September 23 2011
======================================

At 2 PM PhST, A Tropical Depression located north of the Caroline Islands was estimated at 1,310 km east of Visayas 13.0°N 138.9°E with maximum sustained winds of 25 knots. It is forecast to move north northwest slowly.

This Tropical Depression is expected to enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility within the next 24-48 hours.
So where is the area of disturbed weather formerley known as 99L this morning? Anyone think we will see a repeat of it's on again off again daily performance today?

18.0N 62.6W

I suppose that is still near the Windward Islands...
area of weather near the Bahamas looks interesting, hope it brings South Florida some rain, we didn't get any of the action from yesterday that soaked Tampa and Central Florida areas.
Quoting MoltenIce:
How is it lopsided?

You're starting to look like a troll. No signs of an EWRC, at least yet.

Ha! I'm a troll because I don't see the same things you are in regards to Hilary? LMAO. So you're the second coming now? I don't see Hilary as that organized. That's all. We're all here to discuss the storm. Let's have fun and do that!
Good Morning. Hiliary is headed out to sea and Ophelia is well, under the weather.
So the next threat comes from CV at 10% this morning.
Ophelia barely hanging in:

AL, 16, 2011092312, , BEST, 0, 145N, 520W, 35, 1006, TS, 34, NEQ, 225, 120, 0, 180, 1012, 175, 120, 0, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, OPHELIA, S,
Still pretty interesting east of the Leeward Islands and Bahamas though.
Linkrainbowloopcarib



have a great day everyone
Quoting Neapolitan:
Ophelia barely hanging in:

AL, 16, 2011092312, , BEST, 0, 145N, 520W, 35, 1006, TS, 34, NEQ, 225, 120, 0, 180, 1012, 175, 120, 0, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, OPHELIA, S,

Neo, I've greatly enjoyed your comments lately. Very informative and on the money. Keep up the good work there.
I just caught a piece of debris from the infamous satellite that's being focused on. I turned it over and it said, "scratch and sniff" and when I did, I smelled rain.
GOOD LORD, ENOUGH ALREADY! Do we really have to start the bickering and name calling this early in the morning? I have been lurking and occasionally posting for years now, but I have NEVER seen so much "drama", insults, name calling, and ridiculas stuff on this site as has been posted the last couple of weeks. I come here for insightful, intelligent information about the tropics and to learn. PLEASE TAKE A TIME OUT, COOL DOWN AND LET'S BE RESPECTFUL TO ONE ANOTHER. If you don't like another person's post, just ignore or hide.

Thank you all very much.
Quoting Chicklit:
Still pretty interesting east of the Leeward Islands and Bahamas though.
Linkrainbowloopcarib



have a great day everyone
yeah forecast looks worse now for antilles islands instead of being on dry side of a TS looks like rain might be in the forecast for the end of the weekend and the start of the next work week
Quoting CitikatzSouthFL:
GOOD LORD, ENOUGH ALREADY! Do we really have to start the bickering and name calling this early in the morning? I have been lurking and occasionally posting for years now, but I have NEVER seen so much "drama", insults, name calling, and ridiculas stuff on this site as has been posted the last couple of weeks. I come here for insightful, intelligent information about the tropics and to learn. PLEASE TAKE A TIME OUT, COOL DOWN AND LET'S BE RESPECTFUL TO ONE ANOTHER. If you don't like another person's post, just ignore or hide.

Thank you all very much.


If that was meant for me in any way, please accept my appologies for my two posts, I feel the same way and am tired of reading posts like "poof". As the season is winding down I am coming here less and less for the comments because the value has been lost over the last month or two. Partly because the season is winding down, but I used to come here in the off season and still read good comments. I rarely post as you can see in my numbers and most of those are when I am in or close to being in the "cone".

Cheers
Poll:
Who would welcome a paid version of this blog, to the end that at least some trolls would be filtered out?


I love the technical discussion here, but the time it takes to sort through all of the drama is becoming prohibitive.
So, my Dell 1501 got the "Blue Screen of death" yesterday. Does anyone have a good suggestion for a under $1000.00 laptop that is good quality? I was thinking Toshiba.
Quoting Bayside:


Read your comments, that's a laugh... they are not comprehensible.
I have no problem understanding Taz. Are you that shallow?
could florida have a visit from a suprise td ir ts moving in from the bahmas area???,the little engine that could??
Quoting scooster67:
So, my Dell 1501 got the "Blue Screen of death" yesterday. Does anyone have a good suggestion for a under $1000.00 laptop that is good quality? I was thinking Toshiba.
Are you kidding???? After experiencing the blue screen of death on a pc, I could look no other direction than Apple....

Get a 13" macbook pro from apple. It's the best laptop out there, and even if you are stubborn enough not to use mac os x lion, you can still run your windows 7 on the mac seamlessly.
Quoting scooster67:
So, my Dell 1501 got the "Blue Screen of death" yesterday. Does anyone have a good suggestion for a under $1000.00 laptop that is good quality? I was thinking Toshiba.


That's what I have... I bought it in '08 and never have had a day of trouble with it.
Quoting Chicklit:


Nice vorticity in that area just NW. of the Leewards and E of FL and Bahamas.
Quoting scooster67:
I have no problem understanding Taz.


Link

Quoting stillwaiting:
could florida have a visit from a suprise td ir ts moving in from the bahmas area???,the little engine that could??



If something develops in the bahamas it would move N
or even NE theres a troff over the SE right now.
581. Relix
Big Difference between Ophelia and Maria...

Ophelia has a very good center.
Quoting sflweatherguy:



If something develops in the bahamas it would move N
or even NE theres a troff over the SE right now.


Big 'un too.

Flow today across FL is E to W, and over the next 48 hours it reverses W to E.

Lots of rain for the eastern side of the peninsula by Sunday.
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
toshiba is good got one few months back like may no problems
mac book last longer is better but still made in china
Good Morning. Once again things relatively quiet in the Atlantic Basin and another storm on the E-Pac side late in their season. This has been very prevalent this year with a very active Pacific Basin.
Quoting Gearsts:
That's 20W.
Sun comes up on an Ophelia once again firing a little convection from the center. A touch better shape then last night. RGB Floater..
Quoting cat5hurricane:

Ha! I'm a troll because I don't see the same things you are in regards to Hilary? LMAO. So you're the second coming now? I don't see Hilary as that organized. That's all. We're all here to discuss the storm. Let's have fun and do that!
Hah, sorry for that.

Yes, let's track Hilary instead of mindless bickering. :D
On Hilary model verification on where TVCN is best, GFDL, CMC, LBAR is doing pretty well too. Intensity overall models didn't do so well, LGEM leads there.
ok can someone please please confirm something for me?

I have been hearing of late that tropical activity is going to pick up drastically in the middle of October and Florida is the primary threat due to October steering patterns and currents

has anyone else heard anything on tropics picking up in the western and central caribbean?

too early to be worried on my part because it is all guesses or predictions but I am going overseas on October 19 and the "mid October" part is freaking me out. hope there will be no problems with my flight! yikes!
Hilary is raging.. Probably not done intensifying yet.
Models turning a bit north there at the end..
Quoting EcoLogic:
Poll:
Who would welcome a paid version of this blog, to the end that at least some trolls would be filtered out?


I love the technical discussion here, but the time it takes to sort through all of the drama is becoming prohibitive.


dude, I've been paying since 2005
Quoting kshipre1:
ok can someone please please confirm something for me?

I have been hearing of late that tropical activity is going to pick up drastically in the middle of October and Florida is the primary threat due to October steering patterns and currents

has anyone else heard anything on tropics picking up in the western and central caribbean?

too early to be worried on my part because it is all guesses or predictions but I am going overseas on October 19 and the "mid October" part is freaking me out. hope there will be no problems with my flight! yikes!


The pattern favors formation in the Caribbean in a week or two.

Obviously, not a sure fire thing by any stretch, but models suggest favorable conditions in early October.

Nothing to change your plans over, there's nothing there yet.

And even if it were, it would have to hit your airport on the 19th to be an issue unless the place got hammered, but chances are that won't happen. Remember on any given day your much -less- likely to have a hurricane than to have one.
Quoting Skyepony:
Hilary is raging.. Probably not done intensifying yet.


I'm secretly watching the NHC looking for the upgrade later this morning possibly.
Cambodia's flood death toll reaches 58

kshipre1~ Some MJO models forecast upward lift (potential DOOM) for the region then. Singling out FL seems a little unfair this early on.
Not a lot of wind yet, of course, but cyclonic turning is evident according to ASCAT:

ASCAT
Stadium effect?
Quoting scooster67:
So, my Dell 1501 got the "Blue Screen of death" yesterday. Does anyone have a good suggestion for a under $1000.00 laptop that is good quality? I was thinking Toshiba.
I'm on a Macbook & it has had zero trouble in two years, not a glitch. But a friend has a Macbook Pro which has a few more performance features, while similar.
Quoting MoltenIce:
Stadium effect?


Looks like it.

I think I see the 50 yard line.
Quoting superpete:
I'm on a Macbook & it has had zero trouble in two years, not a glitch. But a friend has a Macbook Pro which has a few more performance features, while similar.
I have a 14 inch Toshiba and a 10 inch Asus. The Toshiba is real good.
Hilary on MIMIC. Hard wobble toward MX right before the turn out to sea (for now) must of raised a few eyebrows...
Seems Mexico has gotten very lucky with Hilary paralleling the coast. I but the surf is up for the surfers who dare. :)
604. XLR8
New Blog
Quoting superpete:
I'm on a Macbook & it has had zero trouble in two years, not a glitch. But a friend has a Macbook Pro which has a few more performance features, while similar.


good luck getting a decent mac computer for less than 1 grand, asus makes good products for pretty cheap.
Quoting leelee75k:


dude, I've been paying since 2005


I think he means "pay to post".