Archive for September 9th, 2008|Daily archive page

HURRICANE IKE CIRCULATION – LESSON 1

LEFT CLICK THESE IMAGES TO MAKE THEM LARGER.  YOU CAN ACHIEVE A NICE HIGH RESOLUTION VIEW OF THE IMAGE OF IKE ABOVE WITH A SECOND LEFT CLICK.

Inflow consists of the harder-edged clouds with sharp contrast – Outflow consists of the more diffuse cirrus and cirrostratus of the upper layer.

PLEASE REMEMBER THAT THOUGH THIS IS A TUTORIAL, THE LOCATIONS OF STORMS AS SHOWN ON THE GRAPHICS ARE TIME-SENSITIVE.  TO AVOID MISUNDERSTANDINGS, CONSULT THE DATE AND TIME OF THE POSTING.

With this post you can either simply enjoy the high resolution image of Ike and leave it at that point or explore deeper into the dynamics of storms such as this.

I have provided a large image (above) of Ike completed earlier today followed by smaller images contrasting the circulation below with the circulation above.  Thirdly, you will find below an image of what might seem like a very odd looking hurricane compared to what you have been looking at this season.  To see it, you must ask for more detail when the invitation appears at the end of the next paragraph.

Because of only a small amount of sheer and other factors, Ike is a well-formed system.  And – if you can get past its destructive character you might marvel at its beauty.  I speak of it as though it were a living thing.  In many respects, it is a separate entity with a life of its own.  We even talk about the life cycle of such a storm.  We personify it with a name, in this case a male name.  Its winds spiral because of the Coriolis effect and the whole storm’s path responds to the Coriolis effect – sometimes that is evident, sometimes it is not.  If you find yourself confused about the Coriolis effect, please be patient because I intend to post an item soon, with an explanation of certain aspects of hurricanes which might seem to be contradictions when they are not at all.  Believe me, misunderstandings about the Coriolis effect does cause considerable confusion. If you are interested in more detail about the movement and the energy within this storm, please read on

Baton Rouge Electricity – 40% Still Out!

Read today’s New York Times article on the title subject; here is a link:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/09/us/09power.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

IKE – COMPARISON BETWEEN GFDL MODEL AND NWS MIDLINE

The two charts posted below are:

1) the National Weather Service 11 pm EDT 5-day forecast for Ike.

2) the GFDL model’s forecast position at about the same time (5 days out).

The GFDL has been the best performer for the last 3 years or so.  It appears to me that there is general agreement between its “5-day out” position and the NWS forecast mid-line position 5 days out.  In most cases the forecasters tell us to avoid focusing upon the mid-line (weighted mean line) and pay more attention to the cone of uncertainty.  Nevertheless, I want you to see the comparison.  This is partly because at this time, based upon my observations of past performance, I personally have high regard for the GFDL model’s conclusion and I feel certain that the NWS forecasters do too.  However, time will tell.

Finally, remember that the storm has quite a lot of energy-providing warm water to travel over before making landfall – no matter where that is.  Please don’t forget that storms can pull some very big surprises.  I feel that everyone on (and inland of) the Gulf Coast should stay alert to the storm’s behavior.  For example, I feel that my neighbors should remain alert.  We live about 20 miles in from the Crystal River, Florida Gulf coast.

I’m attending the first 4 hours of my 8 hour AARP driving refresher class in the morning – so there won’t be any posts until the afternoon.  I highly recommend the AARP-sponsored classes for those of you in the AARP age group.  I do it once every three years and always learn something of value and the instructors make it fun.