Talking the Tropics With Mike: Flossie nears Hawaii

Atlantic tropical waves struggling

Talking the Tropics With Mike: Flossie nears Hawaii

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August is often the beginning of the more active part of the Atlantic hurricane season. The third named storm is usually "on the map" by Aug. 13... the 4th by Aug. 23 & the 5th by Aug. 31 (43 years of data).  In other words, we're about right on schedule so far.


A tropical wave - '96-L' - that came off the coast of Africa last week ontinues moving west across the Atlantic & is moving into the Eastern Caribbean.  Hostile shear is keeping the wave from developing much.  Due to its "shallowness" (weak), the wave continues on a more westward tracking than forecast models were indicating last week.  This will still be a wave to watch in the long run once into the Western Caribbean &/or Southern Gulf, but indications are that this wave will have hard time organizing.

Another wave is following '96-L' & has some long term potential as well.  This wave will also likely take a southern route avoiding a persistent weak trough over the Eastern U.S. that might otherwise steer a deeper system more to the north.

Model plots for wave '96-L' - only a few plots because most models now do not develop the wave:

An examination of dust over the Central & Eastern Atlantic shows a pretty heavy area of dust/dry air over the Eastern & Central Atlantic extending to the Eastern Caribbean.  While such dry air can inhibit tropical development initially, once the wave is farther west & out of the dust "cloud" - IF all other conditions are equal - organization/strengthening can occur.  The 2005 hurricane season stands out as a "dusty" Eastern Atlantic but disturbances simply waited to get out of the dust - further to the west - to develop & then "make history".

2019 names..... "Chantal" is next on the Atlantic list (names are picked at random... repeat every 6 years... historic storms are retired (Florence & Michael last year):

East Atlantic:



Mid & upper level wind shear (enemy of tropical cyclones) analysis (CIMMS). The red lines indicate strong shear of which there is plenty across the Atlantic at the moment:

The Atlantic Basin:

Water vapor imagery (dark blue indicates dry air):

Deep oceanic heat content:

Sea surface temp. anomalies show some "cool" water remaining over the E. Atlantic but avg. to above avg. temps. for much of the rest of the Atlantic Basin.....

SE U.S. surface map:

Surface analysis centered on the tropical Atlantic:

Surface analysis of the Gulf:



Very weak "Flossie" is nearing the Hawaiian Islands & will dissipate soon as the system comes under the influence of a strong upper level trough anchored northwest of the islands.  No siginficant impacts for Hawaii from Flossie.

Flossie model plots: