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Hurricane Season 2010: Tropical Depression 2 (Gulf of Mexico)
07.09.10
 
July 9, 2010

NASA's AIRS instrument captured an infrared look at TD2 as its rains stretched from southeastern Texas to northeastern Mexico. > View larger image
NASA's AIRS instrument captured an infrared look at TD2's high thunderstorm cloud tops on July 8 at 19:29 UTC (3:29 p.m. EDT) as its rains stretched from southeastern Texas to northeastern Mexico. The coldest cloud tops were as cold as -63F, and indicate areas of heavy rainfall (purple).
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
A small area of very heavy thunderstorms is shown in this analysis located over the Gulf of Mexico east of the Texas-Mexico coast. > View larger image
The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite flew over tropical depression number 2 (TD2) on July 8, 2010 at 1020 UTC creating data used in the rainfall analysis shown above. A small area of very heavy thunderstorms is shown in this analysis located over the Gulf of Mexico east of the Texas-Mexico coast. TRMM's precipitation radar shows that some of the thunderstorms had tops extending upward to almost 15km (~9.3 miles).
Credit: SSAI/NASA, Hal Pierce
NASA Satellites See High, Cold Thunderstorm Cloud Tops in Tropical Depression Two

NASA's Aqua and TRMM satellites confirmed that Tropical Depression Two (TD2) had some strong, high thunderstorms a day after its center made landfall. TD2 appears elongated on satellite imagery, and its rains stretch from southeastern Texas to northeastern Mexico. Those rains are still prompting flash flood watches and warnings.

NASA's Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared look at TD2's high thunderstorm cloud tops on July 8 at 19:29 UTC (3:29 p.m. EDT) as its rains stretched from southeastern Texas to northeastern Mexico. The coldest cloud tops were as cold as -63F, and indicate areas of heavy rainfall.

Earlier in the day at 1020 UTC (6:20 a.m. EDT), the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite flew over TD2 creating data used in a rainfall analysis. At that time, a small area of very heavy thunderstorms was located over the Gulf of Mexico east of the Texas-Mexico coast. TRMM's precipitation radar showed that some of the thunderstorms had tops extending upward to almost 15km (~9.3 miles), which indicate very strong storms, likely with heavy rainfall.

On Friday, July 9, at 5 a.m. EDT, the National Weather Service's Hydrometeorological Prediction Center (HPC) in Camp Springs, Md. noted that "Locally heavy rains continue to spread across the Rio Grande Valley."

As TD2's rainfall continues to sweep warm, moisture in from the Gulf of Mexico, flood and flash flood watches remain in effect across much of Texas. Coastal flood warnings remain in effect along portions of the western Gulf coast.

Some rain totals from the National Weather Service range from 2 inches to 5 inches in various locations. The largest rainfall total recorded was 5.16 inches at the Hads Guadalupe River in Victoria, Texas. Bloomington received 3.6 inches, Victoria Regional Airport received 2.86 inches, and Fort Hood received 2.47 inches.

The flood warning continues for the Guadalupe River near Bloomington affecting Calhoun and Victoria Counties in Texas, as recent heavy rainfall over the area will result in river rises above flood stage during the next few days.

At 5 a.m. EDT, TD2's center was about 115 miles southwest of Laredo, Texas near 26.5 North and 100.9 West. Maximum sustained winds were near 20 mph with higher gusts, and TD2 is expected to move farther inland into the higher terrain of northern Mexico later today or tonight, and dissipate over the weekend.

The HPC said that "Locally heavy showers will continue across Texas for the next couple of days. Additional rainfall amounts of 1 to 3 inches are possible...with isolated maximum totals of up to 8 inches for localized areas along the Texas/Mexico border."

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center



July 8, 2010

The visible image shows Tropical Depression 2 with several areas of clouds near the south Texas coast. > View larger image
The visible image from the GOES-13 satellite on July 8 at 14:31 UTC (10:31 a.m. EDT) showed a disorganized tropical depression 2 (left, center) with several areas of clouds near the south Texas coast (left).
Credit: NASA/GOES Project
This image shows that the convection in TD2 is weak by the lack of blue and purple which indicate high clouds, and powerful thunderstorms. > View larger image
NASA's Infrared imagery from the AIRS instrument showed that the convection in TD2 is weak by the lack of blue and purple which indicate high clouds, and powerful thunderstorms. The black circle was inserted into the image to show TD2's center of circulation near 24.8 N and 95.2 W.
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
Tropical Depression 2 Forms from System 96L, NASA Sees it as Disorganized and Weak

The GOES-13 satellite that monitors U.S. East Coast weather captured a visible image of Tropical Depression Two today, July 8 at 10:31 a.m. EDT, and it showed disorganization with several areas of clouds near the south Texas coast. Meanwhile, NASA's Aqua satellite showed the storm has weak convection.

The second tropical depression of the Atlantic Ocean season formed last night at 11 p.m. EDT in the Gulf of Mexico. It was formerly known as System 96L.

Because Tropical Depression 2 is so close to the south Texas and northeastern Mexico coastlines warnings are in effect. A tropical storm warning is in effect for the Coast of Texas south of Baffin Bay to the mouth of the Rio Grande and for the coast of Mexico from the mouth of the Rio Grande to Rio San Fernando. As the depression makes landfall today the tropical storm warnings are expected to be discontinued.

Just 12 hours after formation, the poorly organized Tropical Depression Two was poised to make landfall in southern Texas as 11 a.m. EDT. At that time its center was located about 30 miles east-southeast of Brownsville, Texas near 26.0 North and 97.0 West. Tropical Depression Two's (TD2) maximum sustained winds are near 35 mph, and it is moving northwest near 15 mph. TD2 has a minimum central pressure of 1007 millibars.

NASA's Aqua satellite also flew over Tropical Depression 2, and noted that it had weak convection (rapidly rising air that condenses and forms thunderstorms that power a tropical cyclone). Infrared imagery from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument on Aqua showed that the convection in TD2 is weak because of warm cloud top temperatures. AIRS basically reads cloud top temperatures. Warmer cloud top temperatures indicate weak convection and not very powerful thunderstorms. Conversly, colder temperatures, indicated higher clouds and powerful thunderstorms that keep a tropical cyclone going.

TD2 is going to bring some heavy weather to the warning area today, including heavy rainfall, gusty winds and isolated tornadoes. Rainfall is expected between 4 and 8 inches over portions of far northeastern Mexico and coastal Texas with isolated maximum amounts of 10 inches. Winds near tropical-storm force may occur over southern Texas through the early afternoon hours, and isolated tornadoes are possible over southern Texas today.

The rainfall will remain a big threat to the area because soils are still soaked from the heavy rainfall from Hurricane Alex last week. That helps make flash flooding possible.

The local National Weather Service in Brownsville, Texas also noted that "Low water crossings and small streams could swell to raging torrents of water. Creeks and arroyos will quickly rise and possibly flow out of banks."

For live radar of Brownsville, Texas from the National Weather Service: http://radar.weather.gov/radar.php?rid=BRO&product=NCR&overlay=11101111&loop=yes.

GOES-13 was launched by NASA, and is managed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The NASA GOES Project at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. creates images and video of GOES satellite data.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center



July 7, 2010

This GOES-13 image shows the system as an almost oval shaped area of clouds in the western Gulf of Mexico > View larger image
This visible image of System 96L from the GOES-13 satellite shows the system as an elongated area, almost oval shaped, of clouds in the western Gulf of Mexico, stretching from the Yucatan Peninsula north to the Texas coast
Credit: NASA/GOES Project
GOES-13 Satellite Sees Elongated System 96L Getting Organized

System 96L looks like an oval-shaped area of clouds in a recent visible satellite image from the GOES-13 satellite. The National Hurricane Center noted that it now has a 50% chance of development into a tropical depression by sometime on Thursday.

GOES-13 is one of a two Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites that monitor weather over the U.S. GOES-13 covers the eastern U.S. and GOES-11 covers the western U.S. Both satellites are managed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. GOES-13 captured a visible image of System 96L on July 7 at 1732 UTC (1:32 p.m. EDT), and its broad area of clouds covered the western Gulf of Mexico, stretching from the Yucatan Peninsula north to the Texas coast.

System 96L is an elongated area of low pressure and is moving west-northwestward at 10 to 15 mph. Its center is near 23.3 North latitude and 93.3 West longitude. Shower and thunderstorm activity has ramped up and is more concentrated about 300 miles east-southeast of the Texas/Mexico border. That increase in showers and thunderstorms is happening near the southern part of the low pressure area.

The National Weather Service said that "Conditions appear conducive for development and a tropical depression could form before the system reaches the coast of northeastern Mexico or southern Texas on Thursday."

Even if System 96L doesn't develop into a tropical depression, it is still forecast to bring locally heavy rains and gusty winds to portions of eastern Texas and northeastern Mexico during the next few days.

Outside of System 96L, tropical cyclone formation is not expected anywhere else in the Atlantic, Caribbean or Gulf of Mexico during the next 48 hours.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center



July 6, 2010

NASA's Aqua satellite flew over System 96L on July 6 and noticed some very high thunderstorm clouds indicating strong convection. > View larger image
NASA's Aqua satellite flew over System 96L on July 6 at 7:05 UTC (3:05 a.m. EDT) and noticed some very high thunderstorm clouds (purple) indicating strong convection, particularly from the Yucatan Peninsula stretching to western Cuba. Other scattered convection and thunderstorms are also present (blue).
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
This visible image from NOAA's GOES-13on July 6 shows System 96L as a large area of cloudiness in the southern Gulf of Mexico. > View larger image
This visible image from NOAA's GOES-13 satellite was captured on July 6 at 1445 UTC (10:45 a.m. EDT) and shows System 96L as a large area of cloudiness in the southern Gulf of Mexico over the Yucatan Peninsula (bottom, center).
Credit: NASA/GOES Project
NASA Infrared Satellite Imagery Showing Some Scattered Strong Convection in System 96L

The National Hurricane Center in Miami, Fla. is keeping an eye on System 96L in the southern Gulf of Mexico, for possible development into a tropical cyclone. NASA satellites are providing data on the system, and have revealed some strong convection in it.

NASA's Aqua satellite flew over System 96L on July 6 at 7:05 UTC (3:05 a.m. EDT) and the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument noticed some very high thunderstorm clouds indicating strong convection. Some of the thunderstorm cloud tops were so high, they were colder than -63 degrees Fahrenheit. The satellite image revealed scattered convection and showers and thunderstorms in the southern Gulf of Mexico associated with System 96L.

System 96L is showing scattered, disorganized areas of high clouds and convection because it's a broad area of low pressure. The center of that low pressure area is near the northern Yucatan Peninsula, near 19.7 North and 86.3 West just south of the strongest convection in the AIRS infrared satellite image.

Meanwhile, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite called GOES-13 captured a visible image of System 96L on July 6 at 1445 UTC (10:45 a.m. EDT). The image shows System 96L as a large area of cloudiness in the southern Gulf of Mexico over the Yucatan Peninsula. The image was created by the NASA GOES Project at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.

The National Hurricane Center noted this morning that there is a medium chance, around 30%, for development of System 96L to become a tropical depression in the next 48 hours. System 96L will continue to movie west-northwestward over the next several days.

Even if System 96L doesn't get itself together and organize into a tropical depression, the Yucatan Peninsula is still going to experience some locally heavy rainfall and gusty winds today.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center