Jun 27, 2011

DAY 27

We now have Invest 95L. It is located near the Yucatan Peninsula entering the Bay of Campeche. It has become more defined today and the Hurricane Center is now giving it a 50% chance of becoming a tropical cyclone over the next 48 hours.

Upper level wind shear conditions are becoming more favorable day to day. It is moving west-northwest and will stay in the Bay of Campeche all day tomorrow. The chances of this storm developing into our first tropical cyclone of the year will increase with time. Time however is something that it does not have on it's side. With it's current heading, it will run into Mexico in 2-4 days. It has slowed it's forward motion a little, but likely not slow enough to remain in the Gulf for 4 days.

The water vapor image above shows a large area of very dry air over Texas and northern Mexico. There is no intrusion into Invest 95L yet, but if that air doesn't get removed from the area, that could also have an effect on it. With no surface circulation visible yet, this storm is far from becoming a depression. But with the warm ocean water below, the diurnal max overnight, and the topography of the Bay of Campeche area know for inducing cyclonic circulation, this storm can advance markedly overnight.

The image above is the mean wind steering map for the atmosphere top to bottom. This is one tool that helps us determine the track of tropical systems. The guidance is west towards Mexico. There is an alley of possible travel into the Gulf Coast, but the ridge over Florida is forecast to strengthen and move west to cover all of the Gulf states. The subtropical ridge over Texas is strong and expected to remain, that will throw the block on 95L to the north.

We will learn more tomorrow if the scheduled hurricane hunter mission is run. Then they will be able to determine where exactly the low level circulation is developing. Early indications was that there was a surface low developing in the southern bay, but now it appears that a more dominant low is forming further north near the top of the Yucatan. If that is the case, 95L will be able to make it a little further north before making landfall in Mexico. That should please the interests in southern Texas. That drought stricken area is begging for a mere drop of rain at this point.

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