Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Named Storms - 2015 through 2020

The following lists are the named storms for the given years between 2015 and 2020. Alex and Bonnie are now history, so Colin will become the next named storm, followed by Danielle. At the present time, there is a disturbance in South East Pacific, and it may develop within the next 48 hours. What happens if we run out of hurricane names for any given year? We will be using our third given name this year and the Atlantic Hurricane season begins tomorrow. The fact is that if we are unlucky enough to run out of names, the one thing that will not happen will be to use names for the next given year. What will happen instead, the National Hurricane Center will turn to the Greek alphabet and we'll have Hurricanes Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, Epsilon, Zeta, Eta, Theta, Iota, Kappa, Lamda, Mu, Nu, Xi, etc. So now you know all the names for the coming storms through the year 2020.

2015                2016                 2017                 2018               2019                2020

Ana                 Alex                Arlene              Alberto           Andrea             Arthur
Bill                  Bonnie            Bret                 Beryl               Barry               Bertha
Claudette        Colin               Cindy              Chris               Chantal            Cristobal
Danny             Danielle          Don                 Debby             Dorian             Dolly
Erika               Earl                 Emily              Ernesto           Erin                  Edouard
Fred                Fiona               Franklin          Florence         Fernand            Fay
Grace             Gaston             Gert                 Gordon          Gabrielle           Gonzalo
 Henri             Hermine           Harvey            Helene           Humberto          Hanna
Ida                 Ian                    Irma                Isaac            Imelda               Isaias
Joaquin          Julia                 Jose                 Joyce           Jerry                  Josephine
Kate               Karl                 Katia                Kirk               Karen                Kyle
Larry              Lisa                 Lee                   Leslie            Lorenzo             Laura
Mindy           Matthew            Maria                Michael         Melissa              Marco
Nicholas       Nicole              Nate                  Nadine          Nestor                Nana
Odette          Otto                 Ophelia             Oscar            Olga                   Omar
Peter             Paula                Philippe            Patty             Pablo                  Paulette
Rose             Richard            Rina                  Rafael           Rebekah              Rene
Sam              Shary             Sean                  Sara              Sebastien             Sally
Teresa           Tobias             Tammy              Tony             Tanya                  Teddy
Victor            Virginie           Vince                 Valerie          Van                     Vicky
Wanda           Walter              Whitney            William         Wendy                Wilfred

Monday, May 30, 2016

Disturbance Located - 10% Chance of Cyclone Formation in 48 Hours

As reported by the Nation Hurricane Center in Miami Florida, there is now a reported disturbance confirmed as of 11:00 pm PDT Monday, May 30, 2016.

The report claims the following:

An elongated area of low pressure located about 900 miles south of the southern tip of the Baja California peninsula is producing disorganized showers and thunderstorms. Environmental conditions are expected to be conductive for gradual development of this system, and a tropical depression is likely to form by the end of the week as the disturbance moves west-northwestward to westward at 5 to 10 mph. The formation chance through 48 hours is low at about 10%. The formation chance through 5 days is high, now at 80%.

Tropical Storm BONNIE Downgraded to a Tropical Depression

  

   Tropical Storm Bonnie has been downgraded to a tropical depression even before it made landfall just east of Charleston, South Carolina on the Isle of Palms around 8:30AM Sunday. It is moving very slowly, 1-2 MPH up the South Carolina Coast, with winds up to 30 MPH reaching as far north to Virginia. By 8AM on Thursday, the eye of the storm should be heading off shore to the North East. New York City. Presently it is converging on Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. It is not expected to strengthen in the next 48 hours. At the present time, all tropical storm warnings have been discontinued. The storm is bringing heavy rain with gusty winds, elevated surf and dangerous rip currents with an associated storm surge with minor coastal flooding. Another 4-6 inches of rain is expected across east-central Georgia, central and eastern South Carolina and eastern North Carolina. Even with the storm dissipation imminent, there should be heavy raid that will spread well north of Bonnie's main circulation gong into the Mid-Atlantac and Northeast.


Saturday, May 28, 2016

Hurricane Facts

SAFFIR-SIMPSON SCALE

After a hurricane goes through its stages and matures, it still can intensify to certain sizes and strengths. Much like that of humans once they're adults. This all depends on the right environmental factors and whether or not it is near land. The Saffir-Simpson Scale is a way to indicate the strength of these storms by their sustained wind speed, and central barometric pressure.

Category 1 – 74-95 mph (64-82 knots; 119-153 km/hr). Damage is limited to foliage, signage, unanchored boats and mobile homes. There is no significant damage to buildings. The main threat to life and property may be flooding from heavy rains.

Category 2 – 96-110 mph (83-95 knots; 154-177 km/hr). Roof damage to buildings. Doors and windows damaged. Mobile homes severely damaged. Piers damaged by storm surge. Some trees blown down, more extensive limb damage.

Category 3 – 111-130 mph (96-113 knots; 178-209 km/hr). This is the first step of Major Hurricane. Landfalling major hurricanes have their names retired from the list of available hurricane names. For example, after Hurricane Charley made landfall in Florida as a Category 4 hurricane, its name was retired. In the future, when someone says “Hurricane Charley”, there will be no doubt which storm is meant. Category 3 storms cause structural damage to some buildings. Mobile homes are completely destroyed. Roof damage is common. Storm surge begins to cause significant damage in beaches and harbors, with small buildings destroyed.

Category 4 – 131-155 mph (114-135 knots; 210-249 km/hr). Structural failure of some buildings. Complete roof failures on many buildings. Extreme storm surge damage and flooding. Severe coastal erosion, with permanent changes to the coastal landscape not unheard of. Hurricane force winds extend well inland.

Category 5 – Greater than 155 mph (135 knots; 249 km/hr). Complete roof failure on most buildings. Many buildings destroyed, or structurally damaged beyond repair. Catastrophic storm surge damage. All Category 5 hurricanes’ names are retired, regardless whether they ever make landfall. In the Northwest Pacific, a typhoon that reaches 150 mph (241 km/hr) is called a Super Typhoon. The damage caused by a super typhoon is equivalent to a strong Category 4 or Category 5 hurricane, depending on how strong the typhoon is. Because conditions in the Northwest Pacific favor storm formation throughout most of the year, super typhoons are much more common than Category 5 hurricanes. Every year the Northwest Pacific sees several super typhoons, while the Atlantic might see one Category 5 every few years.




WHAT CAUSES HURRICANES?

There are approximately 100 tropical waves that travel westward from the West Coast of Africa through the Atlantic every year. So, how do these waves become one of the ten or so tropical storms, and hurricanes that occur each season. There are several key factors that come together to develop tropical storms and hurricanes: warm sea surface temperatures, light winds aloft, and rotation or spin. If any one of these factors is unavailable, then the tropical storm or hurricane can weaken or decay.
  • Warm sea surface temperatures--This is a key ingredient because it serves as the fuel source for hurricanes. Sea surface, or ocean temperatures need to be at least 80 degrees Fahrenheit (27 degrees Celsius) where the system is located in order for it to develop into a tropical storm or hurricane.
  • Light winds aloft--Hurricanes and tropical storms travel east to west so they are supported by an easterly wind flow. They are also vertical systems in that they have thunderstorms that build vertically in the atmosphere. These two conditions make hurricanes quite different from the storms that usually bring us our weather, and make it essential to have light westerly winds aloft so that there is no shearing, or tearing apart of thunderstorms.
  • Rotation, or spin--In order for the wave to be considered a depression, storm, or hurricane, it must have some rotation, or spin generated by the winds coming together to form it. Without this ingredient, the wave is just another area of low pressure.

Carolina Cost Threatened by Tropical Storm Bonnie



 Expect heavy rainfall and guest of winds for coastal North and South Carolina, as the 2nd storm of the year has been upgraded to a tropical storm named Bonnie. This will most definitely put a damper on Memorial Day weekend activities for beach goers.

So the facts are clear. The weather this hurricane season may be frequent, as this is already the second named storm of the 2016 hurricane season year, but the fact is that the regular hurricane season still hasn't officially begun. Last year, tropical storm Ana took the coast 3 weeks before the beginning the the Atlantic Hurricane season. While coming on-shore, it had sustained winds of 60 mph. An advisory from the National Weather Service claims that Tropical Storm Bonnie is moving towards the northwest at about 10 miles per hour. The warning is presently active for the areas between the Savanna River outside of Savanna, George, to the Myrtle Beach-area town of Little River Inlet, S. Carolina. It is expected to go ashore near Charleston, and heavy rain is expected along the Mid-Atlantic coast, straight up towards New England. Most likely, there will be storm surges, dangerous life-threatening surf and rip current conditions along portions of the coast. There is also a likelihood of a few  tornadoes during the on-slot.

Forecast Advisory from the National Weather Center

000
WTNT22 KNHC 290231
TCMAT2

TROPICAL STORM BONNIE FORECAST/ADVISORY NUMBER   6
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL       AL022016
0300 UTC SUN MAY 29 2016

CHANGES IN WATCHES AND WARNINGS WITH THIS ADVISORY...

NONE.

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT...

A TROPICAL STORM WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR...
* SAVANNAH RIVER TO LITTLE RIVER INLET SOUTH CAROLINA

A TROPICAL STORM WARNING MEANS THAT TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS ARE
EXPECTED SOMEWHERE WITHIN THE WARNING AREA...IN THIS CASE WITHIN
THE NEXT 12 HOURS.

TROPICAL STORM CENTER LOCATED NEAR 31.0N  79.5W AT 29/0300Z
POSITION ACCURATE WITHIN  20 NM

PRESENT MOVEMENT TOWARD THE NORTH OR 360 DEGREES AT   0 KT

ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE 1008 MB
MAX SUSTAINED WINDS  40 KT WITH GUSTS TO  50 KT.
34 KT.......  0NE   0SE  20SW  60NW.
12 FT SEAS.. 75NE   0SE   0SW  45NW.
WINDS AND SEAS VARY GREATLY IN EACH QUADRANT.  RADII IN NAUTICAL
MILES ARE THE LARGEST RADII EXPECTED ANYWHERE IN THAT QUADRANT.

REPEAT...CENTER LOCATED NEAR 31.0N  79.5W AT 29/0300Z
AT 29/0000Z CENTER WAS LOCATED NEAR 30.9N  79.4W

FORECAST VALID 29/1200Z 31.8N  80.0W
MAX WIND  40 KT...GUSTS  50 KT.
34 KT... 30NE  20SE   0SW  40NW.

FORECAST VALID 30/0000Z 32.7N  80.1W...INLAND
MAX WIND  35 KT...GUSTS  45 KT.
34 KT... 30NE  30SE   0SW  20NW.

FORECAST VALID 30/1200Z 33.1N  79.6W...INLAND
MAX WIND  30 KT...GUSTS  40 KT.

FORECAST VALID 31/0000Z 33.5N  78.7W...OVER WATER
MAX WIND  30 KT...GUSTS  40 KT.

FORECAST VALID 01/0000Z 34.3N  77.4W...POST-TROP/REMNT LOW
MAX WIND  25 KT...GUSTS  35 KT.

EXTENDED OUTLOOK. NOTE...ERRORS FOR TRACK HAVE AVERAGED NEAR 150 NM
ON DAY 4 AND 200 NM ON DAY 5...AND FOR INTENSITY NEAR 15 KT EACH DAY

OUTLOOK VALID 02/0000Z 35.0N  76.0W...POST-TROP/REMNT LOW
MAX WIND  25 KT...GUSTS  35 KT.

OUTLOOK VALID 03/0000Z 35.5N  75.0W...POST-TROP/REMNT LOW
MAX WIND  25 KT...GUSTS  35 KT.

REQUEST FOR 3 HOURLY SHIP REPORTS WITHIN 300 MILES OF 31.0N  79.5W

NEXT ADVISORY AT 29/0900Z

$$
FORECASTER BRENNAN




Friday, May 27, 2016

Hurricane ALEX - 1st Tropical Storm for 2016 - Appears in JANUARY

 
Hurricane ALEX Track


       The 2016 Hurricane Season actually begins next Wednesday June 1, and runs through November 30. It should be what is considered a near normal year, but the predictions this year have higher levels of uncertainty. What this suggests is that we could see more hurricane activity than we've seen in the last 3 years, which were below normal.
The prediction means that there is a 79% likelihood of at least a minimum of 10 storms and can be as high as 16 storms. These will be packing winds starting at around 39 mph and somewhere between 4 to 8 storms could become hurricanes, with winds starting at 74 mph or higher. One to four of these storms could be

considered major, with winds starting at 111 mph or higher. On January 14th, Hurricane Alex packed sustained winds of 80 mph as it was located at least 275 miles or 433 kilometers south of Portugal's Azores Islands. The Azores was experiencing something that most residents that live in this modern time would witness, a hurricane warning in January. Maximum winds were recorded at 85 mph. Hurricane Alex, the first storm of the 2016 is included in the outlook. It is what meteorologists are looking at and scratching their heads when they look at a hurricane formed in the Atlantic in the middle of January. It's been at least 40+ years since a winter storm that was formed in the Atlantic earned a name in January.
   So what is the phenomenon? To begin, in the Atlantic waters where the hurricane formed was at about 68 degrees Fahrenheit. But the upper atmosphere of the storm was super cold, somewhere in the range of -76 degrees, which calculates to a 144 degree difference that produced the energy to spon the hurricane.
   To be sure, this type of storm is not a regular occurrence in hurricane formations. The timing for such a storm is way too soon in the year, but this makes you wonder what type of hurricane season we will have this year. Alex earned the position of being the first named storm of 2016, but more-so it is the first named storm to be born since 1938. Since records have been kept on storms, it is the 4th known storm to arrive in the month of January since records begin in 1851.
   So yes, this storm was unusual. I will following ALL tropical storms worldwide on this blog for the entire year of 2016. If you were a betting person, you have a great chance to win if you claimed that there would be more than one severe tropical storm to hit the United States this year. Luckily, Hurricane Alex was not one of those storms that came to the U.S. This storm stayed well out in the Atlantic, but the mere fact that it even existed is something very strange to know.

The following text is the Hurricane Discussion that appeared at the National Hurricane Center.....

ZCZC MIATCDAT1 ALL
TTAA00 KNHC DDHHMM

HURRICANE ALEX DISCUSSION NUMBER   4
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL       AL012016
1100 AM AST THU JAN 14 2016

Remarkably, Alex has undergone the transformation into a hurricane.
A distinct eye is present, embedded within a fairly symmetric mass
of deep convection.  Water vapor imagery shows that the upper-level
trough is now west of the cyclone, with divergent flow over the
center - indicative of a tropical transition.  It is very unusual to
have a hurricane over waters that are near 20 deg C, but the
upper-tropospheric temperatures are estimated to be around -60 deg
C, which is significantly colder than the tropical mean.  The
resulting instability is likely the main factor contributing to the
tropical transition and intensification of Alex.  With these
changes, the government of the Azores has issued warnings for most
of the Azores islands.

The initial intensity is set to 75 kt in accordance with the
analyzed Dvorak T-number of 4.5.  Only slight additional
intensification seems possible since the system will be passing
over even colder waters during the next day or two.  In 36 hours,
the global models suggest that the cyclone will become
extratropical as it begins to merge with a large low pressure area
at high latitude.  The post-tropical cyclone is then likely to lose
its identity after 48 hours.

The initial motion is north-northeastward or 020/17 kt.  Alex is
being steered by a shortwave mid-level trough that is rotating
around a larger trough to the northwest.  This should cause the
cyclone to turn northward and north-northwestward and accelerate
over the next couple of days.  The official track forecast is very
similar to the previous one and also quite close to the consensus
of the tightly-packed dynamical model forecast tracks.

Alex is the first hurricane to form in the month of January since
1938, and the first hurricane to occur in this month since Alice of
1955.

FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INIT  14/1500Z 31.5N  28.4W   75 KT  85 MPH
 12H  15/0000Z 34.3N  27.7W   80 KT  90 MPH
 24H  15/1200Z 38.9N  27.7W   75 KT  85 MPH
 36H  16/0000Z 45.3N  28.6W   60 KT  70 MPH...POST-TROP/EXTRATROP
 48H  16/1200Z 53.0N  31.5W   60 KT  70 MPH...POST-TROP/EXTRATROP
 72H  17/1200Z...DISSIPATED

$$
Forecaster Pasch

NNNN


The following is a corrected report put out by the NHC the previous day....


ZCZC MIATCDAT1 ALL
TTAA00 KNHC DDHHMM CCA

HURRICANE ALEX DISCUSSION NUMBER   7...CORRECTED
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL       AL012016
500 AM AST FRI JAN 15 2016

Corrected 48-hr forecast position

The overall convective pattern of Alex has continued to erode since
the previous advisory. However, conventional and microwave satellite
imagery indicate that there is still enough inner-core convection
and a small radius of maximum winds to warrant keeping Alex as a
hurricane for this advisory. Satellite classifications continue to
decrease, and the initial intensity has been lowered to 65 kt based
on a blend of the TAFB current intensity estimate of T4.5/77 kt and
a current T-number of T3.5/55 kt.

Alex has yet to make the turn toward due north, and the initial
motion estimate is 005/20 kt. Other than to nudge the forecast track
slightly to the right based on the more eastward initial position,
there are no significant changes to the previous forecast track or
reasoning. Alex is expected to be steered northward and then
northwestward over the next couple of days within deep cyclonic flow
in the eastern periphery of a large extratropical low centered over
the northwestern Atlantic near Newfoundland. On the forecast track,
the center of Alex and the core of strongest winds should reach the
central Azores by late morning or early afternoon. The global and
regional model guidance remains in excellent agreement on this
scenario, and the official forecast track is a blend of the
consensus model TVCN and input from the Ocean Prediction Center.

Most of the coldest cloud shield has now shifted into the western
semicircle, a signal that extratropical transition is likely
beginning. With Alex now moving over 16C sea-surface temperatures,
and with colder water still ahead of the cyclone, transition to
an extratropical cyclone should be complete within the next 12
hours. However, global models suggest that there will be enough
baroclinic forcing to maintain hurricane-force winds after
transition occurs despite the cold waters of the north Atlantic.

The 34-kt wind radius was expanded in the northeastern quadrant
based on quality wind reports from ship BATFR17. The wind field is
expected to continue to expand as Alex undergoes extratropical
transition at higher latitudes. The wind radii forecasts are based
primarily on guidance from the NOAA Ocean Prediction Center.

FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INIT  15/0900Z 36.8N  27.0W   65 KT  75 MPH
 12H  15/1800Z 41.4N  27.7W   65 KT  75 MPH...POST-TROP/EXTRATROP
 24H  16/0600Z 48.7N  30.0W   65 KT  75 MPH...POST-TROP/EXTRATROP
 36H  16/1800Z 56.0N  34.5W   65 KT  75 MPH...POST-TROP/EXTRATROP
 48H  17/0600Z 56.5N  47.0W   65 KT  75 MPH...POST-TROP/EXTRATROP
 72H  18/0600Z...ABSORBED BY EXTRATROPICAL LOW

$$
Forecaster Stewart

NNNN
     THE FOLLOWING IS A POST-TROPICAL CYCLONE ALEX REPORT WHEN THE WINDS DROPPED AT AROUND 74 MPH. 

000
WTNT31 KNHC 152032
TCPAT1

BULLETIN
POST-TROPICAL CYCLONE ALEX ADVISORY NUMBER   9
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL       AL012016
500 PM AST FRI JAN 15 2016

...ALEX BECOMES EXTRATROPICAL...
...THIS IS THE LAST ADVISORY...


SUMMARY OF 500 PM AST...2100 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...43.0N 27.8W
ABOUT 290 MI...470 KM N OF TERCEIRA IN THE AZORES
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...70 MPH...110 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...N OR 350 DEGREES AT 40 MPH...65 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...986 MB...29.12 INCHES


WATCHES AND WARNINGS
--------------------
There are no coastal watches or warnings in effect.


DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK
------------------------------
Satellite images and surface observations indicate that Alex has
lost its tropical characteristics.

At 500 PM AST (2100 UTC), the center of Post-Tropical Cyclone Alex
was located near latitude 43.0 North, longitude 27.8 West. The
post-tropical cyclone is moving toward the north near 40 mph (65
km/h), and a turn toward the northwest and west with an additional
increase in forward speed is expected over the next 36 hours.

Maximum sustained winds are near 70 mph (110 km/h) with higher
gusts.  Little change in strength is forecast during the next 36
hours, and the post-tropical cyclone is forecast to merge with
another extratropical cyclone by Sunday.

Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 485 miles (780 km)
from the center.

The estimated minimum central pressure is 986 mb (29.12 inches).


HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND
----------------------
None.


NEXT ADVISORY
-------------
This is the last public advisory issued by the National Hurricane
Center on this system.  Additional information on this system can be
found in High Seas Forecasts issued by the National Weather Service
under AWIPS header NFDHSFAT1, WMO header FZNT01 KWBC, and available
on the Web at http://www.opc.ncep.noaa.gov/shtml/NFDHSFAT1.shtml,
and in high seas forecasts issued by Meteo France under WMO header
FQNT50 LFPW and available on the web at
http://www.meteofrance.com/previsions-meteo-marine/bulletin.

$$
Forecaster Pasch

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Hurricanes and Typhoons of the 2015 Tropical Season

   In 2015, there has been a total of 22 hurricanes or typhoons that reached a Category 4 or 5 in strength in just the Northern Hemisphere this year. This has been a record number, that was broken by a typhoon named Koppu that ravaged the Philippines as a super typhoon. But since then, Super Typhoon Champi, Hurricane Olaf and Hurricane Patricia added to the total. It is important to note that the record that was broken was just 18 back in 2004.
The year was full of activity, even with three of the Category 4 hurricanes that were running simultaneously. Climate change has a big part of these results, plus the El Nino which is playing a role in the very active Pacific storms this year. The El Nino partially reduced the amount of wind shear in the central and eastern Pacific. The activity in the Pacific also can be attributed to the very warm ocean waters.
    In the Pacific basin last year, there have been 8 named storms that developed. They are as follows....Halola, Ela, Iune, Kilo, Loke, Malia, Niala and Oho. This tops a record of just 4 storms in 1982.
   One of the most extreme intensity storms was one called Super Typhoon Maysak which reached a category 5 in the end of March 2015. Since then, there has been at least one typhoon or hurricane that reached the categories of 4 or 5 through October.

Below is a list of all 22 hurricanes and typhoons that have reached Category 4 or 5 status so far in 2015, and the month(s) that this occurred. The 2016 season promises to be just as active.