Video of the Week: 9/24/17

This week’s video shows the inside of the Duluth National Weather Service radar dome.  This video was taken as they were making some repairs to one of the drive gears.  It was a ten day repair, with six people working on it, so it was a major repair.

Thank you for reading my post.

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New Mexico Weather: 9/24/17

Yesterday was a rainy, windy mess.  We had the doors of the church open for some circulation when the downburst hit.  It blew everything off the bulletin board and launched one of the chairs that as used to prop the door.  I estimated 40-50 mph winds, easily.  The rain was heavy as well.  Unfortunately, my weather station acted up, so I don’t know how much rain we received at the house.  It made for a decent sunset.

This morning has been mild, sunny and still.  There were a few hot air balloons up, one of which drifted right over my house.

National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts (for Socorro) a sunny day, with a high temperature of 82 F.  The winds will be from the southeast at 5-15 mph.  This evening will be mostly clear, with a low temperature of 50 F. Winds will be from the south at 5-15 mph, becoming northwest after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Magdalena) a sunny day, with a high temperature of 73 F. The winds will be from the south at 10 mph. This evening will be clear, with a low temperature of 48 F. Winds will be from the south at 5-10 mph, becoming northwest after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Rio Rancho) a sunny day, with a high temperature of 75 F. The winds will be from the southwest at 5-10 mph.  This evening will be mostly clear, with a low temperature of 46 F. Winds will be from the south at 5-10 mph, becoming north after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook concerning freezing temperatures in the northwestern plateau.  They have also issued a Freeze Watch for parts of San Juan county, as shown in the Watches and Warnings graphic below:

The visible satellite imagery shows that there are light clouds over the eastern border of the state this morning.

The infrared satellite imagery shows that none of these clouds are thick.  This image has been excluded from today’s post.

The water vapor imagery shows that there is some dry air behind the boundary that passed through yesterday, though more moisture is being drawn into a mid and upper-level low pressure system near the Four Corners.

The 12Z sounding from Albuquerque shows an inverted v pattern, with a saturated layer at 600 mb, and an incredibly damp surface (note the strong drop in dewpoint just above the surface).   However, there was less moisture overall, as compared to yesterday’s sounding.  There was 0.36 inches of precipitable water present in the column this morning.  There was 34 J/kg of Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and -85 J/kg of Convective Inhibition (CINH) present.  There was no thermal inversion near the surface, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 6.0 C/km.

The hodograph shows that there was 10 kt of low-level shear (mostly due to directional changes) and 68 kts of deep-layer shear (mostly due to speed changes).

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show cool temperatures and low humidity in the west, and high humidity in the east (based on the surface dewpoint depressions).  The winds are light, and there are no major frontal boundaries present over the state, though there is a strong dryline in the eastern third of the state.

The surface pressure chart shows that we are under low pressure this morning, but there are no strong pressure gradients over the state.  The RAP shows that the pressure will drop everywhere (1002 mb for most of the state) over the next six hours, with a slight pressure gradient developing near the Four Corners area.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows moderate southwesterly flow ahead of the approaching trough.

The 500 mb NAM chart shows no strong vorticity advection over the state today.  This image has been excluded from today’s post.

The 700 mb NAM chart is unavailable at this time.

The 850 mb NAM chart shows some weak Cold Air Advection (CAA) from the southeast.

The Precipitation chart shows that there is still a chance of rain in the eastern part of the state.  The rest of the state is expected to remain dry.

Today looks to be a pleasant day.  I am going to go for a run here in a few minutes, and then I will probably do a little gardening, work in my shed, and perhaps take a trip to the junk yard, while the weather is nice.

Thank you for reading my post.

The upper air soundings and mesoscale analysis plots are from the Storm Prediction Center website.
The forecasted upper air soundings are from TwisterData.com.
The surface observation and upper level charts are from Unisys Weather.
The satellite data is from College of DuPage – SATRAD

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Satellite Image of the Week #38

This week’s satellite image shows clouds from both a land breeze and a sea breeze.  The land breeze clouds formed during the night, and make up those narrow bands clouds that have drifted into the ocean.  The foggier looking clouds are likely due to a weak sea breeze first thing in the morning.  Both sets parallel the coast line.

Thank you for reading this post!

Source:  College of DuPage – Meteorology

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New Mexico Weather: 9/23/17

Yesterday was hot and sunny, with some moderate winds in the afternoon.

This morning has been mostly cloudy, mild and still.  The skies look more like Maryland than New Mexico.

National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts (for Socorro) a partly sunny day, with a 30% chance of scattered showers and thunderstorms, and a high temperature of 80 F.  The winds will be from the south at 10-20 mph.  This evening will be mostly clear, with a low temperature of 52 F. Winds will be from the southwest at 15-20 mph, becoming west at 5-10 mph after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Magdalena) a mostly sunny day, with a 20% chance of isolated showers and thunderstorms, and a high temperature of 72 F. The winds will be from the south at 14-20 mph. This evening will be mostly clear, with a low temperature of 51 F. Winds will be from the southwest at 15-20 mph, decreasing to 5-10 mph after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Rio Rancho) a partly sunny day, with a 30% chance of scattered showers and thunderstorms, and a high temperature of 75 F. The winds will be from the south at 15 mph.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a 30% chance of scattered showers and thunderstorms, and a low temperature of 50 F. Winds will be from the south at 5-15 mph, becoming west after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook concerning the heavy rains today.  They have also issued a Flash Flood Watch for the eastern half of the state.  The NWS Watches and Warnings Graphic is shown below:

The SPC has also issued a Marginal Risk for severe weather through the eastern third of the state today.  The primary threat will be gusty winds from storms that form into linear segments.

The visible satellite imagery shows that most of the state is under cloud cover this morning.  The clouds are in long southwest to northeast bands ahead of the trough.

The infrared satellite imagery shows that some of these clouds are thick and are likely producing precipitation.

The water vapor imagery shows that deep moisture has returned to the state.

The 12Z sounding from Albuquerque shows an inverted v pattern, with a saturated layer between 550 mb and 450 mb.   There was 0.72 inches of precipitable water present in the column this morning.  There was 13 J/kg of Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and -315 J/kg of Convective Inhibition (CINH) present.  There was a small thermal inversion near the surface, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 7.6 C/km.

The hodograph shows that there was 15 kt of low-level shear (mostly due to directional changes) and 59 kts of deep-layer shear (mostly due to speed changes).

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show cool temperatures and lower humidity in the west, and high humidity in the east (based on the surface dewpoint depressions).  The winds are light, and there are no major frontal boundaries present over the state, though there is a strong dryline in the eastern third of the state.  Doppler RADAR shows a few showers over the northeastern and eastern parts of the state this morning.

The surface pressure chart shows that we are under low pressure this morning, with a moderate pressure gradient ahead of this trough.  The RAP shows that the pressure will drop, the gradient will weaken slightly, but the winds will increase over the next six hours.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows moderate southwesterly flow ahead of the approaching trough.

The 500 mb NAM chart shows some weak vorticity advection ahead of the trough.  In the northeastern part of the state, a little Negative Vorticity Advection (NVA) might clear some of the clouds away, but in the rest of the state, some very weak Positive Vorticity Advection (PVA) will sustain the cloud cover.

The 700 mb NAM chart is unavailable at this time.

The 850 mb NAM chart shows some weak Warm Air Advection (WAA) from the southeast.  This warm air will also bring moisture into the state.

The Precipitation chart shows that most of the state will see measurable rain by this evening.

I was planning on truck camping again somewhere in the Gila, but I am waiting, but tonight’s weather may be poor camping weather.  It looks breezy, and perhaps wet.  The eastern part of the state is in serious risk of Flash Flooding over the next few days, as there will be plenty of rain over saturated ground.

Thank you for reading my post.

The upper air soundings and mesoscale analysis plots are from the Storm Prediction Center website.
The forecasted upper air soundings are from TwisterData.com.
The surface observation and upper level charts are from Unisys Weather.
The satellite data is from College of DuPage – SATRAD

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New Mexico Weather: 9/22/17

Yesterday was hot and sunny, with strong winds in the afternoon.

This morning has been mostly sunny, cool and still.  There were a few cirrocumulus clouds along my commute from Socorro to Albuquerque.

National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts (for Socorro) a mostly sunny day, with a high temperature of 88 F.  The winds will be from the south at 10-15 mph, increasing to 15-25 mph, gusting to 35 mph in the afternoon.  This evening will be partly cloudy, with a 20% chance of isolated showers and thunderstorms, and a low temperature of 58 F. Winds will be from the south at 15-20 mph, gusting to 30 mph, and then decreasing to 5-10 mph after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Magdalena) a mostly sunny day, with a high temperature of 79 F. The winds will be from the south at 10-15 mph, increasing to 20-25 mph, and gusting to 35 mph in the afternoon. This evening will be partly cloudy, with a low temperature of 53 F. Winds will be from the southwest at 20-25 mph, gusting as high as , but then decreasing to 5-10 mph after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Rio Rancho) a mostly sunny day, with a high temperature of 84 F. The winds will be from the south at 5-10 mph, increasing to 20-30 mph, and gusting as high as 40 mph in the afternoon.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a 20% chance of isolated showers and thunderstorms, and a low temperature of 60 F. Winds will be from the south at 15-25 mph, gusting as high as 35 mph, but then decreasing to 5-10 mph after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook concerning the high winds and severe storm potential today.  They have also issued a few Wind Advisories, as shown in the Watches and Warnings graphic below:

The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has issued an Elevated Fire Risk for the northeastern third of the state today.  This threat is due to the dry, windy conditions we will experience by this afternoon.

The SPC has also issued a Marginal Risk for severe weather through the eastern third of the state today.  The primary threat will be locally heavy rainfall and minor flash flooding.

The visible satellite imagery is unavailable at this time.

The infrared satellite imagery shows clouds developing over the northwestern quarter of the state this morning.

The water vapor imagery shows moisture returning to the state in the pre-trough environment.  This is similar to what we saw yesterday over Utah and Arizona.

The 12Z sounding from Albuquerque shows the atmosphere continues to moisten, with a moisture peak at 600 mb.   There was 0.47 inches of precipitable water present in the column this morning.  There was no Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and no Convective Inhibition (CINH) present.  There was a moderate thermal inversion near the surface, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 7.1 C/km.

The hodograph shows that there was 23 kt of low-level shear (mostly due to directional changes) and 70 kts of deep-layer shear (mostly due to speed changes).

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show cool temperatures and low humidity (based on the surface dewpoint depressions).  The winds are light, and there are no major frontal boundaries present over the state, though there is a strong dryline in the eastern third of the state.

The surface pressure chart shows that we are under low pressure this morning, with a moderate pressure gradient ahead of this trough.  The RAP shows that the pressure will drop, the gradient ill weaken slightly, but the winds will increase over the next six hours.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows moderate southwesterly flow ahead of the approaching trough.

The 500 mb NAM chart shows no strong vorticity advection over the state today.  This image has been excluded from today’s post.

The 700 mb NAM chart is unavailable at this time.

The 850 mb NAM chart shows no strong thermal advection over the state today.  This image has been excluded from today’s post.

The Precipitation chart shows that rain is possible, particularly in the eastern third of the state by 00 Z.

Today will be breezy ahead of this approaching trough.  Given the strong dryline in the east, the trough, and the moisture return, there is a chance of organized storms by this afternoon.  I’m not sure that there will be enough moisture for large hail or tornadoes (I expect the LCLs to be high), but the shear is more than enough to produce a few organized cells.

Thank you for reading my post.

The upper air soundings and mesoscale analysis plots are from the Storm Prediction Center website.
The forecasted upper air soundings are from TwisterData.com.
The surface observation and upper level charts are from Unisys Weather.
The satellite data is from College of DuPage – SATRAD

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New Mexico Weather: 9/21/17

Yesterday was warm, sunny and still.  There was a slight breeze, but nothing like there was on Tuesday.

This morning has been sunny, mild and still over downtown Albuquerque.  There is not a cloud in the sky in any direction.

National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts (for Socorro) a sunny day, with a high temperature of 90 F.  The winds will be from the south at 5-15 mph, increasing to 15-25 mph, gusting to 35 mph in the afternoon.  This evening will be mostly clear, with a low temperature of 58 F. Winds will be from the south at 15-20 mph, becoming southeast at 5-10 mph after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Magdalena) a sunny day, with a high temperature of 82 F. The winds will be from the south at 5-15 mph, increasing to 20-25 mph, and gusting to 30 mph in the afternoon. This evening will be mostly clear, with a low temperature of 53 F. Winds will be from the southwest at 10-20 mph.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Rio Rancho) a sunny day, with a high temperature of 86 F. The winds will be from the south at 5-10 mph, increasing to 15-20 mph in the afternoon.  This evening will be partly cloudy, with a low temperature of 58 F. Winds will be from the south at 15-20 mph, becoming southeast at 5-10 mph after midnight.

The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has issued an Elevated Fire Risk for the northeastern third of the state today.  This threat is due to the dry, windy conditions we will experience by this afternoon.

The visible satellite imagery is unavailable at this time.

The infrared satellite imagery shows no clouds over the state this morning.  This image has been excluded from today’s post.

The water vapor imagery shows dry air dominates the state this morning.  Notice the moisture streaming into the Rocky Mountains along the trough, however.  This trough will be a weather-producer later this weekend.

The 12Z sounding from Albuquerque shows the atmosphere has some moisture, with a slight peak at 700 mb.   There was 0.44 inches of precipitable water present in the column this morning.  There was no Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and no Convective Inhibition (CINH) present.  There was a large thermal inversion near the surface, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 5.3 C/km.

The hodograph shows that there was 25 kt of low-level shear (mostly due to directional changes) and 28 kts of deep-layer shear (mostly due to speed changes).

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show cool temperatures and low humidity (based on the surface dewpoint depressions).  The winds are light, and there are no major frontal boundaries present over the state, though there is a dryline in the eastern third of the state.

The surface pressure chart shows no strong pressure systems over the state this morning, though there is a slight pressure gradient over the northern tier of counties.  The RAP shows that the pressure will drop everywhere in the next six hours due to diurnal heating, and the pressure gradient will weaken.  However, the winds will increase, as a deep low pressure system is expected to develop over Nevada.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows zonal flow over the state today, as the trough fans out (diffluence) over the state today.

The 500 mb NAM chart shows no strong vorticity advection over the state today.  This image has been excluded from today’s post.

The 700 mb NAM chart shows some rapidly-rising air in a few large pockets over the central and southern parts of the state by 00 Z.

The 850 mb NAM chart shows no strong thermal advection over the state today.  There is some Cold Air Advection (CAA) creeping into the southeastern corner of the state.  Even  so, I excluded this image.

The Precipitation chart shows that the chances of rain are slim today.  This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

Today will be breezy ahead of this approaching trough.  Today has some characteristics of storm weather, though with the limited moisture, rain and thunderstorms are unlikely.  The rising air at 700 mb, the approaching trough, the ample low-level shear and the diffluence aloft all support storms.  The deep-layer shear is marginal.  The limiting factor, however, are these 30-40 F degree dewpoints.

As this trough approaches, we may see some stormy weather this weekend.  The trough is doing a good job of moving moisture ahead of itself, so perhaps there will be enough moisture for storms this weekend.

Thank you for reading my post.

The upper air soundings and mesoscale analysis plots are from the Storm Prediction Center website.
The forecasted upper air soundings are from TwisterData.com.
The surface observation and upper level charts are from Unisys Weather.
The satellite data is from College of DuPage – SATRAD

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Storm Prediction Center Update: 9/20/17

The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) Outlook shows some severe threats this week.


Day 1:  Marginal Risk

The SPC has issued two Marginal Risks, both of which are very small bullseyes.

Strong storms will continue across the Upper Midwest ahead of a surface cold front.  While shear will remain high enough to keep storms organized, they will begin to weaken throughout the evening as diurnal heating diminishes.

The threat over Texas will decrease in the evening as well.  Another line of strong storms was moving into this area.  However, weak flow at the mid-levels will cause storms to lose definition.

 

Day 2:  Marginal Risk

The SPC has issued for the Northern Great Lakes Region.

The trough and associated surface cold front will stall a little ways west of this threat area.  Given the strong moisture advection and forcing due to the frontal boundary, storms are likely to form in this region.  The primary threat will be large hail.  Due to the forcing from the cold front, this threat may evolve and continue into the evening hours, even in the absence of diurnal heating.

 

Day 3:  Slight Risk

An elongated Slight Risk will extend from the Canadian border into the northern Great Plains.  An Enhanced Risk will continue all the way to the Mexican border.

This threat is based on a deepening trough and associated surface cold front.  Ahead of this front, there will be a moist air mass, with dewpoints in the 60’s, steep lapse rates and favorable shear conditions.  Numerous storms are expected, some of which will be supercellular.  While hail is the primary threat, some of these supercells will likely spawn tornadoes.  The limiting factor will be the movement of the frontal boundary, as it may cause storms to favor a linear mode, reducing the tornado threat.

 

Day 4-5:  Potential Too Low

Day 6-8:  Predictability Too Low

The movement of the frontal boundary and the building of a ridge may limit severe threats through Day 4-5, though a Marginal Risk may be needed by Day 6.  However, the models do not converge cleanly on a solution at this time. 

Thank you for reading this post.

All data and images are from the Storm Prediction Center Website.

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