Thursday, October 11, 2012

Tropical Storm Patty and the Atlantic Blob: October 11, Update A

At the end of this entry there will be a poll on the storms mentioned. I need you to take this poll. From this, using a complicated mathematical formula and a bottle of wine, I will work out who will win the Presidential election in November. Don’t bother with all those other polls; this is the only really reliable poll out there. The results will be available on November 7, 2012 and are bound to be 199.99% accurate.

Tropical Storm Patty
They named this blobette so I suppose I better write something instead of having lazy evenings at home, eating bon bons and reading magazines. ;-)  I’ve been watching her for a few days. She is officially centered at 25.8N, 72.5W and is hanging out just northeast of the Bahamas, and officially not moving anywhere for now. I think she is closer to 26.4N, 71.7W, and is slowly heading northeastward, which is completely opposite to the direction of the official forecast track which shows a southwestward path towards the Bahamas.

She has developed some circulation in the lower half of the troposphere but there isn’t anything going on in the upper troposphere. She is very weak, with winds officially at 40mph (TS range: 39-73mph), central pressure 1007mb. I think she’s a little stronger than this, maybe with winds in the 45-50mph range. She does have some convection but she’s had that for days. She has been experiencing strong wind shear (also for days) and the clouds have been streaming off to the northeast, as you can see in this satellite image:

Interestingly, although she’s practically on top of the Bahamas and the forecast track takes her towards them, the NHC have issued no Tropical Storm warnings or watches. This is because they think she will fall apart before you can say ‘Why not spend the money spent on campaigns on something more useful instead?’ I’m sorry, but naming such a weak system and then immediately saying she’s on the verge of falling apart in the next 20 hours is a wee bit ridiculous. The reason the NHC say she will be a Tropical Depression by tomorrow afternoon is because of strong wind shear… however she has already been experiencing strong wind shear and despite that she has persisted and even developed a bit. It doesn’t quite add up. I think she’s stronger than the official word. I think there is a good chance that she will get a little stronger and persist for a little longer than currently forecast, but I am not yet sure she will head towards the Bahamas – the pressure data I am looking at is a little wishy washy. However I have to say that the NHC did do a good job with the forecast of Nadine, so for now we wait and see. If you are in the Bahamas, it may get a bit breezy. Not sure if you’ll get much more though.

I would be rather amused if she did disappear… after all, she is loitering about in the Bermuda Triangle. J

Atlantic Blob
This blob is very disorganized so it’s tricky to see where his center would even be… clouds everywhere! He is somewhere around 12N, 56W but the area of circulation is quite large. There is considerable convection, but it is not very well structured. He also has some circulation in the lowest sections of the troposphere, but nothing at all in the upper troposphere. The NHC say he is heading NW and I think this is a pretty good assessment, especially because that is the direction he’d have to go to say hello to Patty.  The NHC give him a 70% chance of developing. He will have to get his act together quite a bit to be a Tropical Storm. It is possible if he can do this before getting to the lesser Antilles, because they will knock the steam out of him. The next name is Rafael.

Presidential Poll
Poll question 1: Do you think Patty will head southwest or northeast?
Poll question 2: Do you think the Atlantic Blob will be named?

Thank you for participating in this poll.

The results will be available on TV and on radio (semaphore flag version only), in the papers, in the Poll of Polls, and in the Poll of the Polls of the Polls. I am fully qualified to run this poll because my glasses have dark frames.

More tomorrow!

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DISCLAIMER: These remarks are just what I think/see regarding tropical storms - not the opinion of any organization I represent. If you are making an evacuation decision, please heed your local emergency management and the National Hurricane Center's official forecast and the National Weather Service announcements. This is not an official forecast. If I "run away, run away" (Monty Python), I'll let you know.

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