Friday, June 25, 2010

T.D. #1 Forms /T.S. Alex Soon & Thoughts on Yesterday

Here we go...TD 1 is official. NHC is forecasting tropical storm strength (winds greater or equal to 39mph) within the next 12 hours. We'll see what it looks like if it does cross the Yucatan - hurricane models usually handle land interactions very poorly - and reemerges in the Gulf.

Check out the links on the right for the latest updates. Latest Infrared Sat:

Still planning on doing some form of storm summary/analysis from yesterday...but it's the weekend and the World Cup is my first priority. I am pretty confident the damage yesterday was caused by a macroburst, which is a microburst (AKA strong downdraft) but damages/affects a larger area. Technically, to be qualified as a macroburst vs micro the damage has to have a diameter of 2.5 miles or more. I'll have to find ruler and get back to you - not that it matters to the thousands around town still without power. Fortunately I don't know what that feels like...(suckers). Here's a (NASA) picture of what a micro/macroburst "looks" like.

Essentially, a vertical column of air is forced down to the surface at a high velocity, makes contact, and then spreads out horizontally. Three scenarios: either it was a big downdraft in terms of the air column size, the force/speed was so great that the horizontally spreading wind was strong enough to cause extensive damage well away from the "impact zone", or there was more than one microburst. My bet is on the 2nd, but I'll see if that is possible to verify.