Nate almost a hurricane; Maria remains disorganized

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 9:05 PM GMT on September 08, 2011

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An Air Force Reserve hurricane hunter aircraft is in Tropical Storm Nate, and has found winds much stronger than the storm's satellite appearance would suggest. At 2:17 pm EDT, the aircraft measured winds at their flight level of 1500 feet of 93 mph, which would ordinarily support upgrading Nate to a Category 1 hurricane. Surface winds measured by the SFMR instrument were about 70 mph, suggesting that Nate is indeed very close to hurricane strength. However, latest visible satellite loops show that if Nate is a hurricane, it's only half of a hurricane. Nate's low-level center is exposed to view, due to northeasterly upper-level winds that are creating a moderate 10 knots of wind shear. This shear is keeping all of Nate's heavy thunderstorms pushed to the south side of the center, and the northern half of the storm almost cloud-free. Sustained winds at Buoy 42055, about 140 miles to the northwest of the center of Nate, were just 28 mph at 3:50 pm EDT this afternoon. Water vapor satellite loops show that there is a large area of very dry air from Texas to the north of Nate, and this dry air is keeping the northern half of the storm dry.

Nate will meander in the Bay of Campeche for several days, and the computer models are sharply divided on what happens early next week to the storm. A ridge of high pressure is expected to build in to the north of the storm, potentially forcing it westwards to a landfall in Mexico. However, our two best-performing models last year, the GFS and ECMWF, predict that a weak trough of low pressure expected to move across the U.S. early next week will be strong enough to turn Nate northwards towards an eventual landfall along the northern Gulf Coast. We will have to wait until the NOAA jet makes its first mission to sample the steering currents in the Gulf of Mexico to get a better idea on how probable this northern path might be; their first flight will be tonight, and the data will make it into the 8 pm models runs that will be available first thing Friday morning. As far as intensity goes, the very dry air to Nate's north should begin being less of a problem for it by Friday, when the upper level winds shift more to blow from the southeast, and the shear drops to the low range, 5 - 10 knots. Since the storm is moving very slowly, it will upwell cooler waters from the depths that will slow intensification, though.


Figure 1. Afternoon satellite image of Nate.

Tropical Storm Maria
Tropical Storm Maria barely survived as a tropical storm today, but is now making a bit of a comeback. Satellite loops show that Maria has been badly ripped up by the 10 - 20 knots of wind shear affecting it. The low-level center has been exposed to view most of the day, and surface arc-shaped clouds have been racing away from the storm to the west this afternoon, indicating that dry air has been getting into Maria's thunderstorms and disrupting the storm. However, the areal coverage and intensity of Maria's thunderstorms have increased a little in the past two hours. Maria is passing close to buoy 41040, which measured sustained winds of 36 mph, gusting to 45 mph, at 2:50 pm EDT.

Wind shear is predicted to fall to the low range on Friday as Maria approaches the Lesser Antilles. In addition, as I noted in this morning's post, Maria will be encountering an atmospheric disturbance known as a Convectively-Coupled Kelvin Wave (CCKW) that is currently passing through the Lesser Antilles Islands. There is a great deal of upward-moving air in the vicinity of a CCKW, and will help strengthen the updrafts in Maria's thunderstorms, potentially intensifying the storm. None of our models are detailed enough to "see" CCKWs", so we may see more intensification of the storm than the models are calling for. I believe Maria will continue to organize and arrive in the Lesser Antilles Islands as a tropical storm with 50 - 60 mph winds. The latest run of the GFDL model predicts that Maria will be a Category 1 hurricane on Saturday afternoon when it moves through the Virgin Islands, and a Category 2 hurricane Sunday night when it moves through the Turks and Caicos Islands. This is on the high end of what is possible, and I think it more likely that Maria will be a tropical storm with 50 - 60 mph winds in the northern Lesser Antilles, 60 - 70 mph winds in the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, and a Category 1 hurricane in the Turks and Caicos Islands--assuming passage over Puerto Rico and the eastern tip of the Dominican Republic does not significantly disrupt the storm. A lower intensity, as forecast by NHC, is certainly quite possible, as Maria may continue to struggle with the dry air and wind shear besetting it.

The latest computer model runs have been trending more southwards, and the Northern Lesser Antilles, Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and the Bahama Islands are all at high risk of a direct hit by Maria. The models are split on how strong the steering influence a trough of low pressure along the U.S. East Coast will have once Maria approaches the U.S. East Coast. Most of the models foresee that Maria will turn north before arriving at Florida, and potentially threaten North Carolina, Bermuda, or Canada. The latest run of the GFDL model, though, brings Maria through the Bahamas to a point just 100 miles southeast of Miami as a hurricane on Tuesday afternoon. While this forecast is an outlier, and it is more likely that Maria will turn north before reaching Florida, it will be another two days before we will have a fair degree of confidence on when Maria will curve to the north.

Lee's rains trigger historic flooding in New York and Pennsylvania
An extreme rainfall event unprecedented in recorded history has hit the Binghamton, New York area, where 7.49" of rain fell yesterday. This is the second year in a row Binghamton has recorded a greater than 1-in-100 year rain event; their previous all-time record was set last September, when 4.68" fell on Sep 30 - Oct. 1, 2010. Binghamton has also already broken its record for rainiest year in its history. Records go back to 1890 in the city. The rain has ended in Binghamton, with this morning's rain bringing the city's total rainfall for the 40-hour event to 9.02". The Susquehanna River at Binghamton has risen to 25.69', its highest level since records began in 1847, and is now spilling over the flood walls protecting the city, according to media reports. In Hershey, Pennsylvania, Swatara Creek is 19' over flood stage, and more than 9' above its record flood crest. Widespread flash flooding is occurring across the entire area, and over 120,000 people have been evacuated from their homes.


Figure 2. Seven-day precipitation amounts from Tropical Storm Lee and its remnants. Image credit: NOAA/AHPS.


Figure 3. The Susquehanna River at Binghamton has crested this afternoon at its highest flood height on record, 25.69'. Records at this gauge go back to 1847. Image credit: NOAA/AHPS.


Figure 4. In Hershey, Pennsylvania, Swatara Creek is 19' over flood stage, and more than 9' above its previous record flood crest. The river is forecast to crest at 27.2' (green lines are the predictions.) Records at this gage go back to 1930. Image credit: NOAA/AHPS.

The extreme rains are due the the remains of Tropical Storm Lee interacting with a stationary front draped along the Eastern U.S. Adding to the potent moisture mix last night was a stream of tropical moisture associated with Hurricane Katia that collided with the stationary front. You don't often see a major city break its all-time 24-hour precipitation record by a 60% margin, according to wunderground's weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, and he can't recall ever seeing it happen before. It's worth noting that the Susquehanna River Binghamton stream gage, which has been in operation since 1847, is due to be shut off in 3 weeks due to budget cuts. Here's the note at the USGS web site:

NOTICE (03/23/2011)--Data collection at this streamgage may be discontinued after October 1, 2011 due to funding reductions from partner agencies. Although historic data will remain accessible, no new data will be collected unless one or more new funding partners are found. Users who are willing to contribute funding to continue operation of this streamgage should contact Rob Breault or Ward Freeman of the USGS New York Water Science Center at 518-285-5658 or dc_ny@usgs.gov.

I'll have an update in the morning.

Jeff Masters

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1427. Grothar
Quoting PrivateIdaho:


I don't have an issue with a running play but a dive with the left tackle pulling on the one? To much beef in front of Ingram with that call.


Hey, PI, just a bit of trivia. On Long Island and New England they often put vinegar on their french fries instead of ketchup.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27081
33.0n70.2w, 34.2n70.0w have been re-evaluated&altered for H.Katia's_12amGMT_ATCF
32.9n70.2w, 33.9n70.1w, 35.6n69.4w are now the most recent positions
Starting 8Sept_12amGMT and ending 9Sept_12amGMT

The 4 southern line-segments represent HurricaneKatia's path,
the northernmost line-segment is the straightline projection,
and the coastline dumbbell at BHB-44.356n68.026w is the endpoint of the most
recent
previous straightline projection connected to its nearest airport.

Using straightline projection of the travel-speed&heading derived from the
ATCF coordinates spanning the 6hours between 6pmGMT then 12amGMT :
H.Katia's travel-speed was 20.7mph(33.2k/h) on a heading of 18.6degrees(NNE)
H.Katia was headed toward passage over ShagHarbour,NovaScotia ~23&1/2.hours from now

Copy&paste 44.356n68.026w-bhb, 30.3n69.9w-31.4n70.2w, 31.4n70.2w-32.9n70.2w, 32.9n70.2w-33.9n70.1w, 33.9n70.1w-35.6n69.4w, yqi, 33.9n70.1w-43.481n65.656w into the GreatCircleMapper for more info

The previous mapping (for 8Sept_6pmGMT)
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1425. 3211976
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good night guys play nic
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It is unfortunate that the Northeastern Mexico and Southern Texas maybe did not receive long-awaited rains. This is a total desert and looks like maybe the new computer models focus even further south. that's unfortunate situation, but this is now, Mother Nature is Unpredictable. Good luck to the Northeastern Mexico and South Texas.
We need only rain.
(Sorry, my English is not good)
(Google Translate)
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1422. Grothar
Quoting scooster67:
Well, Good night good peep's of Wu.


Nite scooster!
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27081
When I wake up, will decide how I will bunker down the family....

Sleep well...

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Quoting PrivateIdaho:


I'm more likely to get rain from Nate than Texas.
Your avatar is making me hungry, can I have some of your fries?
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628


BIG
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1418. 7544
gfs way est this run
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Quoting quicksilverskys:

I'm showing my ignorance, But since so many of you more knowlegdeable People are on here right now. If (thats the BIG IF) Nate comes ashore in mid mexico area, more or less, could it recurve up through TX?? Seems like eveything else has been hooking to the East???


At present .. there is not one single Model (early or late) that even hints at any track, before or after landfall into Texas.

the keyword there is "present"

there is more support for it to hit NOLA (AP16 & LBAR) then there is for texas.
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
If the High is over Texas it won't be able to recurve up into that high, so it would go around the periphery of the High which is west/wsw clockwise flow.


I'm more likely to get rain from Nate than Texas.
Member Since: August 29, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5236
Quoting JLPR2:
At 54hrs, Maria is right to my NE.

Look at the red line over the east coast. Does that indicate the trough axis?
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
Quoting gugi182:
PUERTO RICO



mm okay...
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13.5N
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1412. gugi182
PUERTO RICO

Quoting CaribBoy:


In which island are you?
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Quoting Clearwater1:
Ok then, thanks.
lol, I said imputed, stupid Android phone with its auto correct.
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
1410. JLPR2
At 54hrs, Maria is right to my NE.

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1409. JNCali
Maria has a nice warm bath to play in and not too much dry air in front of her and wind shear not bad.. She will be strengthening steadily IMO
Member Since: September 9, 2010 Posts: 5 Comments: 1034
Quoting gugi182:
EMILY, IRENE now MARIA well i just figured these ladies are abusing my little island.


In which island are you?
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
This one I believe, Dr Masters said the data will be imputed into the 8PM model runs and will be available by 2AM.
Ok then, thanks.
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Quoting JRRP:



ESto luce feo, nos puede dar una sorpresa a ultima hora...
Looks like a posible last hour surprise storm...

Hay que prepararse.....!!!

It's always better to be overprepared...
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Quoting Clearwater1:
Is this the gfs run that has the Hurricane hunter data input, or the next run?
This one I believe, Dr Masters said the data will be imputed into the 8PM model runs and will be available by 2AM.
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
1404. gugi182
Will NATE be a MAJOR HURRICANE?

A. YES
B. NO

Will it go into Texas and help alleviate the sever drought and if so i hope Texas gets rain but i don't wish them a hurricane just rain so it could help the wildfires
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Quoting quicksilverskys:

I'm showing my ignorance, But since so many of you more knowlegdeable People are on here right now. If (thats the BIG IF) Nate comes ashore in mid mexico area, more or less, could it recurve up through TX?? Seems like eveything else has been hooking to the East???
If the High is over Texas it won't be able to recurve up into that high, so it would go around the periphery of the High which is west/wsw clockwise flow.
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
1402. gugi182
EMILY, IRENE now MARIA well i just figured these ladies are abusing my little island.
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1401. Grothar
Quoting scooster67:
Thanks Gro. I got it :)



No problem. Just had a lot of practice doing it myself.
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1400. JRRP
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If Nate can play defense, NOLA will be begging him to come to da Big Easy!
Member Since: August 29, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5236
1398. gugi182
Since August 2011 until now

PUERTO RICO has been abused this Hurricane Season

A. 12+ inches of rain Thanks to

B. over 20+ inches with IRENE and her 70MPH winds plus the first hurricane of the season formed in VEGA BAJA,PR.

C. Now 50-60MPH T.S Maria taking the same path as IRENE a couple of days ago.

All of this in less than 40 days.
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Quoting Orcasystems:


Taz, you know I don't pretend to be a forecaster. I have no training or background. I have seen Jeff/Levi and a few other competent people say it could go either way. I have watched the models go in all 360 degress of track also.

I think they actually have no firm idea at this time. Anyone who says its "NOT" going any place in particular... is obviously wrong.

I'm showing my ignorance, But since so many of you more knowlegdeable People are on here right now. If (thats the BIG IF) Nate comes ashore in mid mexico area, more or less, could it recurve up through TX?? Seems like eveything else has been hooking to the East???
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Quoting HrDelta:


With as quick as it is moving now, we might have an idea my the time the next model runs come out in around 2 hours.
Is this the gfs run that has the Hurricane hunter data input, or the next run?
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1395. JRRP
Quoting Patrap:

looks like Marco 2008
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Well, Good night good peep's of Wu.
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Quoting Bielle:


The only rule we don't seem to break is the one on spamming. All the others are flagrantly and continually abused. I wonder if the key is repeating each one three times.


To be fair I read GilbertAllen's posts, he does not appear to be a blatant troll, but rather someone who is genuinely misguided and somewhat ignorant in the atmospheric sciences. If however, he continues to post the same message over and over again like he claims then he will imo have resorted to trolling.
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It looks like PR is going to get Maria (very similar to Irene approach) per gfs, anyway. (2 or so days out)
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1391. HrDelta
Quoting BrockBerlin:
I still really don't like the GFS' initial movement seems like it gains way too much latitude in the first 2 day period, I won't say scratch it for this run (I mean it is the GFS a high performing model), but initial motion is something that is usually pretty easy to check and verify and I doubt this thing goes NW in the next 6 hours.


With as quick as it is moving now, we might have an idea by the time the next model runs come out in around 2 hours.
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1389. JLPR2
The triangular shape of the convection resembles that of a TW.
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1388. Bielle
Quoting BlueSkiesAbove:


Actually, that makes good sense KoritheMan..Your suggestion is a good idea. I am sure as well that there are other historical examples of large weather systems that missed the CONUS long before such technology could have been 'in use'.

I am also not a believer in conspiracy theory. There is a reason why it is called theory. A theory is not fact, it remains as a 'best guess' according to the data, even if no data is available. discussions like this don't even belong here at a place where actual professionals [and regular folks] can discuss real factual data.

Also, if you have to repeat your message FOUR times, perhaps no one is listening? In fact there's probably a forum or site just for the topic that you are discussing where your posts on 'weather related conspiracy theory' would likely be more welcome.

Repeating your message at a forum where no one is interested in conspiracy theory seems like a waste of internet space and is probably a good indicator that you didn't read the TOS which states that off topic conversation is a good road to getting banned. Even though your topic is weather related, it deals with fictional conspiracy theory which has nothing to do with factual data, and this blog is obviously for the discussion of weather related phenomenon based on factual data. The Rules of the Road including the type of posts that are appropriate here, can be read via this link -> Blog Rules


The only rule we don't seem to break is the one on spamming. All the others are flagrantly and continually abused. I wonder if the key is repeating each one three times.
Member Since: September 18, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 616
I still really don't like the GFS' initial movement seems like it gains way too much latitude in the first 2 day period, I won't say scratch it for this run (I mean it is the GFS a high performing model), but initial motion is something that is usually pretty easy to check and verify and I doubt this thing goes NW in the next 6 hours.
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Quoting carcar1967:


But you cannot run through the receiver to make a play on the ball. If he went over the back then he ran through the receiver to get to the ball.
well it looked like a bang bang play to me. the ball was coming and he leapt forward to bat it down. IMO most pass interference are judgement calls.
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
1385. Patrap
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419


00Z GFS 57H
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1383. Patrap
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
MARIA MARIA .............She looks like a movie Star....

Link
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1381. pcola57
Quoting GTcooliebai:
should've never been a pass interference, he made a play on the ball regardless if he came over the top of the back.

And if he makes contact with the offensive player doing that manuver then its pass interference...

still 65.3 w/83%RH...
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Quoting carcar1967:


But you cannot run through the receiver to make a play on the ball. If he went over the back then he ran through the receiver to get to the ball.


He bumped him as he jumped...definitely interference.
Member Since: August 29, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5236
1379. RickD1
Quoting clwstmchasr:


It's easy to criticize afterwards. We all do it. But I thought that they should pound it in. It was a good game to start off the season.


was a great game I didnt think after the first quarter it was going to be close who-dat
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00Z GFS T = 27H.

MOVING NW. GFS VERY CONSISTENT.
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1377. Grothar
Quoting BrockBerlin:
Just lob it to Jimmy Graham he is 6'7" and has a 40 inch vertical. I am biased being a Miami student but he should be the Saints go to red zone target.


Hard to ignore a guy with stats like that.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27081

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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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