New Mexico Weather: 2/11/16

In Rio Rancho this morning, the weather was clear, still and cold.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts a sunny day today, with a high temperature of 65 F, and a 5 mph northwesterly wind. This evening will be clear, with a low temperature of 33 F.

The visible satellite and the enhanced infrared satellite imagery confirm the cloudless skies, statewide. They have been excluded from today’s post.

The water vapor satellite imagery shows that New Mexico is in an especially dry pocket of air. This swirl of dry air extends from Lordsburg through Albuquerque towards Clayton.

The 12Z upper air sounding from Albuquerque shows a dry atmosphere, with high dewpoint depressions and only 0.12 inches of precipitable water. There is one slightly humid layer, around 400 mb. This may contribute to a few very high, light clouds this afternoon. There was no Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) present in the column this morning. There was also a thermal inversion near the surface. The 0-3 km average surface lapse rate was 3.6 C/km.

The deep-layer shear was 24 kts, and the low-level shear was 18 kts. Shear at all levels was a mixture of speed and directional changes.

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show the still winds, clear skies and low temperatures. There is one station that is showing overcast skies- I can only think that fog is causing this reading.

The surface pressure map shows that high pressure is still the dominating air mass over New Mexico. There is a pressure gradient over the northwestern corner of the state, though the RAP has it disappearing over the next six hours.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows that the trough is continuing east, and that there is only some light winds aloft over New Mexico.

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

The 700 mb NAM chart shows no rapidly-rising air over the state today. This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

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

Overall, I expect a sunny, warm, still day today over the state. There may be a few high, light clouds this afternoon, but nothing that will even block much sunlight.

Thank you for reading my forecast.

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 NASA – MSFC

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About highplainschasing

This blog is about my tales in storm chasing. My name is Seth Price and I am an instrumentation instructor at New Mexico Tech. My amateur radio call sign is N3MRA.
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