strong tropical wave moving west

Strong Tropical Wave Moving West

Strong Tropical Wave Moving West


Strong Tropical Wave Moving West

We can see on the satellite loop a strong tropical wave moving westward into the Eastern Caribbean this afternoon. So far no surface circulation is indicated through the curvature of the clouds suggests that there is something trying to develop perhaps at mid levels. The wave is moving at a pretty good clip to the west. It is tracking behind an upper air low that is moving across the Florida Straits and into the Gulf of Mexico. Typically systems usually have a tough time developing in the Eastern Caribbean and conditions are almost always more favorable in the Western Caribbean where the wave will be in about 2 days.  The Tropical Weather Outlook from the National Hurricane Center is below.

Strong tropical wave moving west Satellite Loops

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200 PM EDT SUN JUL 31 2016

For the North Atlantic...Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico:

1. Showers and thunderstorms associated with a strong and fast-moving
tropical wave over the eastern Caribbean Sea have changed little in
organization this morning, and there are still no signs of a closed
surface circulation.  Although some gradual development of this
system is possible during the next day or so, the chance for
tropical cyclone formation should increase after the wave reaches
the western Caribbean Sea in a couple of days.  This disturbance is
expected to cause locally heavy rains and gusty winds over portions
of the Lesser Antilles, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico today
and tonight.  These conditions should spread westward across the
central Caribbean Sea and reach Hispaniola by Monday and Jamaica and
Cuba by Tuesday.  Interests in these areas and elsewhere in the
Caribbean Sea should continue to monitor the progress of this
system.  For additional information on this system, see High Seas
Forecasts issued by the National Weather Service.
* Formation chance through 48 hours...medium...40 percent
* Formation chance through 5 days...high...70 percent

Weather models of course have varying ideas here. One of the hurricane models has this system becoming a hurricane by Wednesday as it approaches the Yucatan Peninsula. Conditions appear favorable for development as the upper air wind shear environment is weak and there will be an upper high aloft over the system which will allow it to strengthen.

Strong tropical wave moving west Hurricane Models

strong tropical wave moving west

We also have the GFDL model which develops this into a tropical storm in the central Caribbean on Tuesday and keeps it at that strength as it heads toward the Yucatan Peninsula by Thursday morning.

strong tropical wave moving west

It seems that the global models want to form a circulation further south than the hurricane models and straddle it along 15N with very little development. The easterlies are fairly deep right now thanks to the strong ridge to the north. Whether there is enough weakness in that ridge to allow for a more northward component of motiion remains to be seen. This is the first test for weather models to see how they handle tropical systems since their upgrades so let’s see what happens. It should be noted that the GFDL develops the system behind this one into a hurricane as it approaches the Leeward Islands late this week but we are not even remotely ready to bite into that particular apple since none of the other models show anything remotely close to a weak wave let alone a full blown hurricane. One day at a time folks.


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