Tuesday, September 09, 2008

All eyes on Ike as he enters the Gulf...




Model output


HURRICANE IKE DISCUSSION NUMBER  35
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL092008
500 PM EDT TUE SEP 09 2008

IKE MAINTAINED A FAIRLY WELL ORGANIZED CORE STRUCTURE DURING ITS
PASSAGE OVER WESTERN CUBA...ALTHOUGH CLOUD TOP TEMPERATURES HAVE
WARMED SIGNIFICANTLY OVER THE CENTER DURING THE LAST HOUR OR TWO. A
RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT IS JUST BEGINNING ITS PATTERN TO DETERMINE
THE INTENSITY OF IKE...AND THEY HAVE ALREADY DETERMINED THAT THE
MINIMUM PRESSURE REMAINS LOW...968 MB. IN THE MEANTIME...THE
ADVISORY INTENSITY IS ESTIMATED TO BE 65 KT. REPORTS FROM THE
PLANE JUST IN SUGGEST THAT THE RADIUS OF MAXIMUM WIND IS 60 NM OR
LARGER. IT APPEARS THAT THE CORE IS INTACT ENOUGH TO TAKE
ADVANTAGE OF SOME VERY FAVORABLE CONDITIONS IN THE GULF OF
MEXICO...INCLUDING SOME VERY DIFLUENT UPPER-LEVEL WINDS OVER THE
NEXT 36 HOURS. IN ADDITION...THE FORECAST TRACK FOR IKE TAKES IT
NEAR OR OVER THREE WARM EDDIES...REGIONS OF ENHANCED OCEANIC HEAT
CONTENT. THE GFDL AND HWRF CONTINUE TO FORECAST IKE TO REACH
CATEGORY FOUR STRENGTH IN THE CENTRAL AND WESTERN GULF...WHILE THE
SHIPS AND LGEM FAIL TO MAKE IKE A MAJOR HURRICANE. THE GFS AND
UKMET STILL SHOW AN UPPER-AIR PATTERN THAT LOOKS SLIGHTLY LESS
FAVORABLE IN THE WESTERN GULF...SO I HAVE LEVELLED OFF THE
INTENSITY FORECAST AFTER 48 HOURS. HOWEVER...IKE IS A LARGE
TROPICAL CYCLONE AND MAY BE ABLE TO MAINTAIN ITS FAVORABLE OUTFLOW
ACROSS THE GULF.

THE INITIAL MOTION IS 295/9...AND THERE HAS BEEN NO CHANGE TO THE
FORECAST TRACK THROUGH 48 HOURS AS IKE IS EXPECTED TO MOVE
GENERALLY WEST-NORTHWESTWARD FOR THE NEXT DAY OR TWO IN RESPONSE TO
A WEAKNESS IN THE SUBTROPICAL RIDGE OVER THE NORTHEASTERN GULF OF
MEXICO. THERE HAS BEEN A SIGNIFICANT NARROWING IN THE SPREAD OF THE
LATEST MODEL RUNS...WITH THE GFS...GFDL...AND NOGAPS ALL SHOWING
LESS RIDGING TO THE NORTH OF IKE LATE IN THE PERIOD AND SHIFTING
THEIR TRACKS NORTHWARD TO BE IN BETTER AGREEMENT WITH THE UKMET AND
ECMWF RUNS. IKE IS NOW EXPECTED TO RECURVE AROUND THE PERIPHERY OF
THE SUBTROPICAL RIDGE NEAR THE END OF THE FORECAST PERIOD. THE
OFFICIAL FORECAST IS ADJUSTED NORTHWARD ON DAYS FOUR AND FIVE...BUT
ALL OF THE BETTER DYNAMICAL MODELS ARE EVEN FARTHER TO THE RIGHT.

Radar

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