|Posted by: LPerezIII, 02:16 AM GMT del 03 Agosto 2012||+0|
As of early this afternoon, the Hurricane Hunter aircraft, while investigating Tropical Depression 5, found maximum sustained winds of 45 KTS or 52 MPH. That makes TD5 Tropical Storm Ernesto.
Tropical Storm Ernesto
Current Distance from Galveston, TX – 2,290 miles!! That distance is about the same as the distance between Seattle, Washington and Galveston, TX. That’s still a very long way out.
As of 7pm CDT, the system continues to kind of pulse with strong convection, but the convection is having trouble persisting (a necessary function in order for a tropical storm to strengthen). It is still ragged, but continues to very slowly organize. Right now the system is battling some shear and dry air, and both are keeping the system from rapidly intensifying. However, it does look like more favorable conditions lie ahead and Ernesto will slowly strengthen as it moves westward.
Below is an Infrared image of the system…
At 7pm CDT, the center was located at 13.3N 57.4W and moving west at a very fast pace of 22 MPH. Maximum sustained wind is 50 MPH with higher gusts and the minimum central pressure was 29.68 inches.
Ernesto is currently on the southern periphery of High Pressure that is centered over the Atlantic, and that will continue to steer Ernesto westward at a rapid pace over the next several days.
Since the flow around the High Pressure is clockwise, that flow is steering Ernesto quickly westward basically parallel to the isobars or the little black squiggly lines that outline the various colors. When you overlay the projected track of Ernesto, this is what it looks like...
As Ernesto moves westward, a weakness in the High Pressure is forecast to develop and that will cause Ernesto to slow down and take a more west-northwest track towards the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico. This time of year you may know someone, or you yourself, may be traveling to the Caribbean. Jamaica, Central America, Cozumel, Cancun, Caymans, and other high volume tourist areas will need to keep an eye on Ernesto as the storm progresses westward. It does look to have some sort of impact on these areas, but depending on its strength, size, and ultimate direction some areas will be affected more than others. Lets take a look at the models...
The models are still in pretty good agreement through about 72 hours and then they begin to diverge. If the system can gain steam and organization into a hurricane and the weakness in the ridge develops, it will eventually begin to turn more west-northwest. If it cannot organize very well, and some models still have this possibility, then it will continue on a westward heading possibly striking Central America. Most of the more reliable models show the system turning west-northwestward in about 4 days as a hurricane. That puts Cuba and the Yucatan under the gun and, eventually, puts the system into the Gulf of Mexico. Unless the high pressure somehow expands westward and keeps the system moving west, I think we're looking at Ernesto getting into the Gulf by Wednesday or Thursday of next week.
This one is quickly getting interesting. Stay tuned for updates about this time each day unless critical updates are warranted.
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I have a passion for Mother Nature's fury, serenity, and beauty. I express my soul through my music and photography. B.S. in Meteorology from TX A&M.
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