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12 December 2014

What Do Category 5 Hurricanes Have To Do With The Amazon River?

This freshwater plume inhibits the mixing of colder water beneath the surface, and thus can add a lot of heat to an already powerful hurricane. The NASA Aquarius satellite has a sensor that can measure ocean surface salinity, and it’s data produced the the video below. A paper about this plume and how it can affect hurricanes was published in Geophysical research Letters in 2012. It’s free to read here. …

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10 July 2014

Mid-Summer Taste of Autumn Next Week? Probably!

What is going on? Is it the revenge of the polar vortex? Actually, it’s probably connected to Japanese Typhoon Neogori that at one time was packing 260 kph winds. It is moving into southern Japan now, but the global weather models all indicate that it will push a lot of warm and humid air into the high latitudes north of Japan. This will push the jet-stream northward, and the downstream …

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7 July 2014

Super Typhoon Neogori Heads toward Japan.

The typhoon should weaken before hitting Japan, but Kyushu (southern most island) will get a ton of rain and wind. Flooding rains have already been reported earlier in the week so the soil is already saturated. ISS Astronaut Reid Wisemen sent back this shot of an oddly shaped eye on Neogori. (Perhaps related to the fact it was undergoing an eye-wall replacement cycle.)

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4 July 2014

True Colour View of Arthur from NASA (Doppler sees winds at 100 MPH)

Frying Pan Shoals off the North Carolina coast caught a gust to 99 mph on their weather station. They were in the eye-wall of Hurricane Arthur at the time. Here on the Delmarva Peninsula there is a real risk of extreme rip currents behind the storm. With thousands of folks streaming to the Maryland and Delaware beaches for the holiday weekend, this is a serious threat. Something to think about: …

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2 July 2014

Arthur’s Ripples

  You may need to click on the image above to really see the ripples across the top of Arthur, so do that first, before I tell you why they are there. You are looking at gravity waves, but a better way of understanding it is to compare it to the ripples you see after you throw a rock into a still pond. The rock disturbs the water and makes …

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12 November 2013

Was Haiyan Caused By Climate Change? We Might Know In 30 Years.

There are claims going around that Typhoon Haiyan was a result of climate change, and this is nothing short of ridiculous.  There is some evidence that climate change will change the numbers (and intensity) of tropical cyclones, and some that the storms that do form will be stronger and wetter. That said, there is still a lot of uncertainty in those predictions. An excellent paper on this subject is from …

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10 November 2013

Scope Of The Philippine Disaster Becoming Apparent

Two videos you should see. It now seems the death toll will be in the thousands…perhaps the tens of thousands… and the aftermath…      

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8 November 2013

Amazing Image of Haiyan From SUOMI

The resolution is 375 meters on this image. Ctsy. Dan Lindsey at CIRA in Colorado. There was apparently a big jump in lightning around the eye at landfall. More on that here. GOES R will have on-board lightning detection when it launches in a couple of years. This instrument alone is likely to lead to some new discoveries and significant improvements in now-casting and forecasting. A nice loop of the …

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7 November 2013

The Philippines Holds Its Breath as Severe Typhoon Haiyan Approaches

Winds of over 190 mph and millions in its path. High potential for a major catastrophe. Radar image at sunrise in the Philippines showing an intense eye wall approaching… Bacolod, a city of over a half million, may get the brunt of Haiyan.

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30 October 2013

Sandy A Year Later- A Lot of Lessons Learned and Knowledge Gained

My friend Bob Henson at the National Center for Atmospheric Research has a great piece on Atmos News about Sandy today. NCAR has published some amazing high-resolution model runs of Sandy, and in some ways Sandy actually behaved like a tornadic super-cell. The model runs show that as Sandy approached a cold front, it tilted tubes of rotation air from the horizontal to the vertical. This same thing happens in …

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6 June 2013

Tropical Storm Andrea Threatens East Coast With Flooding Rains

Andrea is stronger this afternoon and late-model runs continue to track it NE across the Carolinas, and right over my home here on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Winds are going to be gusty (perhaps over 40 knots in gusts), but rainfall is far and away the bigger threat. June tropical storms happen in the Atlantic Basin every other year or so, but Andrea may be a storm that is …

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23 May 2013

NOAA: 70% Chance of Unusually Active Atlantic Hurricane Season

The NOAA outlook for this hurricane season is out. Theses forecasts have some skill but it is well to remember that SOME is the operative word here. That said there are growing indications that this will be an active year. Perhaps very active… Here is the public release from NOAA: NOAA predicts active 2013 Atlantic hurricane season Era of high activity for Atlantic hurricanes continues May 23, 2013 Hurricane Sandy as seen …

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5 April 2013

Hurricane Forecasts and The Shrinking Cone of Uncertainty

Two events of note to mention regarding hurricanes and tropical meteorology this week. That familiar cone you see during hurricane season actually has some science to it. The width of the cone is based on the past accuracy of tropical cyclone predictions made by the National Hurricane Center. As the track predictions have improved the cone gets more narrow. Brian McNoldy at the uni. of Miami RSMAS put together a great image showing the difference in the cone from 2008 compared to …

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30 October 2012

Delmarva After The Storm

It was night to remember with the winds howling for hours here on Delmarva. While I was doing the weather updates I could hear the wind rattling the doors of the studio here in Salisbury. While the damage is worse in Jersey and New York, it is bad here as well and the Delmarva Peninsula had more rain from Sandy than anywhere else. The rain gauge in my front yard (a cocorahs …

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29 October 2012

East Coast Waits For the Hammer To Drop

This statement from the Mount Holly, New Jersey NWS Office speaks for itself. I would heed it if you are in Delaware NJ or NYC. Ocean City MD is already getting gusts to 47 mph, and the surge there may reach 4-5 feet as well. I am seeing some model forecasts of 10-13 foot storm surge levels around the NYC area. This would be a Billion dollar disaster if this verifies, and …

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28 October 2012

Halloween Superstorm Heads for Mid-Atlantic

The winds are already increasing along the Eastern Seaboard tonight as Sandy heads northward. I was at Cape Henlopen in Delaware before dark, and the ocean was already roaring with 5-6 foot swells. There is still some disagreement int he model guidance but I’d put the chances of landfall between Rehoboth Beach, Delaware and Sandy Hook NJ at 70%. As Sandy turns into an extratropical storm the winds will no …

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25 October 2012

Northeast Spooked By Potential Franken-Storm (and they should be!)

Hurricane Sandy is feeding off the warm water of the Bahamas tonight, but as it moves northward over the weekend, it will begin to transition to a more nor’easter like storm that takes its energy from temperature differences in the atmosphere. We may even see Sandy weaken for an extended period before becoming perhaps even more powerful as it curves into the NE coast.  Tropical systems almost always have a fairly tight wind field. The …

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29 August 2012

Hurricane Isaac Strengthens Noticeably At Landfall. Risk to New Orleans Increasing.

Winds are gusting to over 100 mph just offshore now and winds are already gusting to near 80 mph around the New Orleans area tonight. The radar data shows a shrinking eye wall and that also indicates the Isaac has gotten stronger. The track now seems likely to put New Orleans in the wettest and windiest part of the storm. The storm surge and the rainfall remain the biggest worries. If you are in …

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27 August 2012

The Big Weekend Weather News You Never Heard About

While the Weather Channel and the TV networks breathlessly reported on a rather puny tropical storm this weekend, there was actually some fascinating real weather to talk about. Yes, Isaac may become  a hurricane and hit the Gulf Coast, but it will likely be a category one storm. It will also miss Tampa almost completely (A fact that has been obvious to any decent forecaster with a fair degree of certainty since Friday morning). …

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3 August 2012

Someone Turned On The Switch In The Tropical Atlantic

Besides Ernesto just north of South America, we have a tropical wave near the Bahamas and another looking very healthy off the coast of Africa this afternoon. The tropics are really heating up now. It’s tIme to check on your hurricane kits if you live near the coast.

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