Watching for Chris later this month - 6/12/2012
Good morning and welcome to my tropical weather update for Tuesday, June 12th 2012. The tropics are very quite as a downward MJO phase is moving through, but that will change. All of the models are indicating that the MJO phase will return to our basin and development chances will increase.
(figure 1. Latest satellite image of our basin)
A Run down of the models.
The 00z ECMWF continues to leave the door open for possible development off the US East Coast by 96 hours, and is probably sub-tropical in nature. By 168 hours, it now finally shows an area of low pressure in the Western Caribbean and moves it into the Gulf, but is very reluctant to strengthen it and dissipates it. I find that odd as conditions should be favorable by then.
(figure 2. ECMWF 192 hours)
The 06z GFS is similar to the ECMWF with predicting that it is possible that a sub-tropical cyclone could get going off the US East Coast by 72 hours as the low that emerges off the coast drifts south into warmer SSTs. By 132 hours, the GFS continues to consistently predict the development of a low pressure area in the Caribbean, and probably develops it into at least a very weak tropical storm before being drawn northward to Cuba and dissipating, where later the same trough that drives it develops a low pressure center by 192 hours, and another, stronger low pressure area gets started at the same time and heads into the Gulf under the influence of high pressure.
(figure 3. GFS 144 hours)
The 00z CMC/GGEM is the most bullish with development off the US East Coast, developing the cyclone in the similar time frame as the GFS and ECMWF, but brings it down to 1004mb as it drifts south and then becomes extra-tropical shortly there after. By 192 hours, it shows a low developing in the GoH before moving inland then into the Gulf, where it develops into a strong tropical storm by 240 hours.
The NOGAPS shows the development of a tropical cyclone in the Caribbean by 132 hours, but is far to bullish with it and is going to be discarded in my opinion. Finally, the 00z UKMET shows the development of a possible sub-tropical cyclone but the timeframe ends before we even get to see what it has in mind for the Caribbean.
Summary and predictions.
The models are all in agreement that something will try to develop this week off the US East Coast, the real question will be if it is tropical or non-tropical, and will only be around for a few days before being blasted by shear and dissipating. The next threat after that for Chris will be in the Caribbean as the MJO phase returns and convection begins to increase in the area. It will be interesting to see how this exactly sets up, and I will have another update in a few days when we get closer to development.