Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Maybe another storm - again

OK team. Sorry to bore you on Gonu II, Son of Gonu, but its a pretty important issue.

A contributor sent me a link to this great site of a major weather geek in the US: The International Weather Blog. This guy is into weather forecasting and numerical modeling in a big way. Cool. Check out the photo. He's the geek from central casting, which appeals to my stereotypical bias. Somehow I trust him more than if the picture was a gorgeous blond or an old white guy with a suit and executive hair.

He was very dismissive of the original UK based 'cyclone on the 29th' model prediction that scared everyone last week. But now he says that several numerical models are starting to predict conditions appropriate for generation of a tropical storm at least just around the time of the anniversary of Gonu, or a week later. Really. As Andy says today (last sentence best):
...Numerical forecast models are showing high pressure locking in aloft over Arabia to Iran. This is allowing for an area of "weakness" (relatively low pressure aloft) over the Arabian Sea. Broadly at least, this is in keeping with seasonal shifts. For one thing, it means that the train of easterly waves that will be watched by Atlantic hurricane forecasters can begin its seasonal trek across Africa from Ethiopia to Senegal. And it also can become the site of tropical cyclone formation.

The GFS, as of 1200 UTC, now shows a low within 72 hours west of Maldives. This could become a tropical depression, if not tropical cyclone. And the scenario shows a cyclonic whirl spinning in a slow wander over the Arabian Sea into the second week of June.

Now, for a look at the ECMWF forecast scenario. Here is the 240 hour forecast (based upon 1200 UTC Tuesday) of surface pressure and 850-mb wind speed valid 1200 UTC, Friday, June 6. We are right back where we were at about this time last week: a major tropical cyclone east of Oman. I have little to say objectively to this; however, subjectively, I believe that it is overwrought once again. Just the same, I do believe that things are fairly favorable for a tropical depression, if not moderate tropical cyclone, to arise over the Arabian Sea within the next one to two weeks.

So, if you've been working on your emergency preparedness list and fighting little old ladies for the last of the bottled water in your local supermarket this week - well done!

I'll keep you posted.

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