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Hurricane Season 2010: Tropical Storm Fiona (Atlantic Ocean)
09.07.10
 
September 7, 2010

MODIS captured an image of the remnants of Tropical Storm Fiona on Friday, September 3, 2010. > View larger image
NASA's MODIS instrument captured an image of the remnants of Tropical Storm Fiona on Friday, September 3, 2010 11:30 a.m. EDT. The center of circulation appears to the north of the bulk of her showers and thunderstorms.
Credit: NASA MODIS Rapid Response Team
Fiona's Fizzling Friday Finale

Tropical depression Fiona, the eighth tropical depression of the Atlantic Ocean season fizzled but not before NASA's MODIS instrument captured an image of it on Friday, September 3, 2010 11:30 a.m. EDT (15:30 UTC). The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer or MODIS instrument captured this visible image of Fiona as the Terra satellite (which it flies aboard) passed overhead. It appears that Fiona's small center of circulation lay just north of the bulk of the clouds associated with its diminishing showers and thunderstorms (which appeared as a large rounded area) which is an indication of wind shear and weakening.

The Final warning on Fiona was issued from the National Hurricane Center on September 4 when it was located about 60 miles south of Bermuda near 31.4 North and 64.9 West. At that time, its maximum sustained winds were near 28 mph, and it had degenerated into a remnant area of low pressure that passed east of Bermuda.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.



September 3, 2010

A disorganized Fiona is located in the bottom right side of this image. > View larger image
This image from the GOES-13 satellite at 10:32 a.m. EDT on September 3 shows a huge Hurricane Earl northeast of North Carolina with cloud cover stretching over the northeastern U.S. A disorganized Fiona is located in the bottom right side of this image.
Credit: NOAA/NASA Goes Project
NASA Imagery Reveals a Weaker, Stretched Out Fiona

NASA satellite data has noticed that Tropical Storm Fiona is getting "longer." That is, the storm is elongating in almost a north-south direction, indicating that she's weakening and may not make it through the weekend. Meanwhile, forecasters are watching two other areas for development in the eastern Atlantic this weekend.

The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite, GOES-13 captured an image of Fiona on Friday, Sept. 3 at 10:32 a.m. EDT and the visible image showed a weak circulation in Fiona's center. It also appeared that Fiona's clouds were "stretched" from north (where the circulation center is located) to far south of the circulation. GOES-13 is operated by NOAA, who also flew in hurricane hunter aircraft this morning and confirmed weaker sustained winds near 45 mph. The GOES-13 image was created by NASA's GOES Project out of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.

Satellite data also showed that convection (rapidly rising air that forms the thunderstorms that power Fiona) was diminished near her center of circulation. Increased wind shear is battering and weakening Fiona as she makes her way north-northeast.

On Friday, September 3, a tropical storm warning was in effect for Bermuda. The island can expect tropical-storm-force winds during the evening hours and Saturday morning, September 3. Fiona will bring about 1 to 3 inches of rainfall to Bermuda as it continues on its northeasterly track.

At 11 a.m. EDT the center of Tropical Storm Fiona was located near latitude 29.0 north and longitude 66.4 west about 245 miles south-southwest of Bermuda. Fiona is moving toward the north-northeast near 13 mph and she's expected to speed up on Sunday and continue weakening. Fiona could become a tropical depression on Sept. 4 and could dissipate over the holiday weekend in the open waters of the Atlantic Ocean.

As Fiona fades, forecasters are eyeing two other areas for possible development of tropical cyclones in the eastern Atlantic. One area is the remnants of Tropical Depression Gaston, which is about 1150 miles west of the Cape Verde Islands. The second area is farther east between the Cape Verde Islands and African west coast. Gaston's remnants have a higher chance of redeveloping than the second area.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.



September 2, 2010

Hurricane Earl nearing North Carolina's coast is located on the left (in the larger image), the much smaller Fiona is located on the lower right. > View larger image
The GOES-13 satellite captured a visible image of Tropical Storm Fiona approaching Bermuda at 1825 UTC (2:25 p.m. EDT). The Category 4 Hurricane Earl nearing North Carolina's coast is located on the left (in the larger image), the much smaller Fiona is located on the lower right.
Credit: NOAA/NASA Goes Project
Bermuda in Warnings as the GOES-13 Satellite Catches Fiona Approaching

Bermuda has warnings up as Tropical Storm Fiona approaches, and GOES-13 satellite imagery from today shows that Fiona, although packing a punch, is a much smaller system that her brother, the Category 4 Hurricane Earl.

A tropical storm warning is in effect for Bermuda today, Sept. 2, as tropical storm force winds are expected there by late Friday. Bermuda can expect between 1 to 3 inches of rainfall from Fiona.

When the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite called GOES-13 captured a visible image of Tropical Storm Fiona approaching Bermuda this afternoon at 1825 UTC (2:25 p.m. EDT) it was a stark contrast in the size of two storms. The huge Category 4 Hurricane Earl nearing North Carolina's coast and is about 400 miles from end to end. Fiona appeared much smaller. Fiona's tropical storm force winds extend 115 miles from the center, although mainly to the east. If those winds were around the circumference of the storm, Fiona would be about 230 miles from end to end, but she's not even that large because most of the strong winds are on one side of the storm. By comparison, Earl dwarfs his "sister."

GOES satellites are operated by NOAA, and the NASA GOES Project at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. produces satellite images and animations from them.

At 2 p.m. EDT on Sept. 2, Tropical Storm Fiona had maximum sustained winds near 50 mph, and slow weakening is forecast in the next 2 days. Fiona was about 520 miles south-southwest of Bermuda near 25.0 North and 66.3 West. She was moving north-northwest near 17 mph, with a minimum central pressure of 1002 millibars.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.



September 1, 2010

Fiona's cold cloud tops with the strongest convection (purple) in the northern and southern areas around the center of circulation. > View larger image
NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of Fiona's cold cloud tops on August 31 at 1:05 p.m. EDT, and saw the strongest convection (purple) in the northern and southern areas around the center of circulation.
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
NASA Infrared Data Sees Convection Building in Fiona's Clouds

Infrared satellite imagery from NASA's Aqua satellite showed some strong convection building in Tropical Storm Fiona, and her maximum sustained winds increased from 40 mph yesterday to 60 mph this morning

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite captured an infrared image of Fiona's cold cloud tops on August 31 at 1:05 p.m. EDT and showed two major areas of strong convection (rapidly rising air that forms the thunderstorms that power a tropical cyclone) north and south of the center of circulation. Some of the cloud tops were are cold as -63 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fiona is intensifying as it approaches the Northern Leeward Islands today, so there are watches and warnings in place. A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for St. Martin and St. Barthelemy. A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for Antigua, Barbuda, Montserrat, St. Kitts, Nevis, and Anguilla and St. Maarten, Saba, and St. Eustatius.

At 8 a.m. EDT on September 1, Fiona's maximum sustained winds were near 60 mph. It was about 70 miles northeast of Barbuda, near 18.2 North and 60.9 West. It was moving west-northwest near 15 mph with a minimum central pressure of 998 millibars.

The National Hurricane Center noted that tropical storm conditions could spread over portions of the Northern Leeward Islands later this morning and afternoon, and rainfall accumulations of 1 to 3 inches with isolated maximum amounts of 5 inches can be expected over portions of the Northern Leeward Islands.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.



August 31, 2010

In this image are Hurricane Earl (lower left), Tropical Storm Fiona located to Earl's east, and Tropical Storm Danielle far in the Northern Atlantic. > View larger image
The GOES-13 satellite captured an image of the busy Atlantic Ocean at 1145 UTC (7:45 a.m. EDT) on August 31. In the visible image, was the large and powerful Hurricane Earl (lower left) passing Puerto Rico, Tropical Storm Fiona located to Earl's east, and Tropical Storm Danielle far in the Northern Atlantic.
Credit: NASA/GOES Project
This infrared image from NASA's AIRS instrument on Aug. 30 at 2010 UTC shows the powerful thunderstorms and high, cold clouds in Earl. > View larger image
This infrared image from NASA's AIRS instrument on Aug. 30 at 2010 UTC shows the powerful thunderstorms and high, cold clouds in Earl. The highest clouds are in purple. Note one band of blue around the center, suggesting eyewall replacement occurring in Earl.
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
GOES-13 Catches 3 Tropical Cyclones Thrashing Through the Atlantic

Powerful Hurricane Earl, growing Tropical Storm Fiona and fading Danielle were all captured in today's visible image from the GOES-13 satellite. The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite called GOES-13 captured an image of the busy Atlantic Ocean at 1145 UTC (7:45 a.m. EDT) on August 31. In the visible image, was the large and powerful Hurricane Earl passing Puerto Rico, Tropical Storm Fiona located to Earl's east, and Danielle far in the Northern Atlantic. Hurricane Earl's eye appear to be covered with high-clouds in the GOES-13 image, while Fiona appeared somewhat disorganized with no apparent center. Farther north in the North Atlantic Ocean, Danielle appeared more "U" shaped on the satellite imagery, although her maximum sustained winds were still near 70 mph at that time.

GOES satellites are operated by NOAA, and the NASA GOES Project at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. provides images and animations of satellite data.


DANIELLE NOW A LOW IN THE NORTHERN ATLANTIC

Danielle has already transitioned into a cold-core low pressure area in the Northern Atlantic Ocean today. Tropical cyclones are warm-core systems, so when the core temperatures change, the dynamics of the system also changes. The final warning for Danielle was issued today (August 31) at 0300 UTC (Aug. 30 at 11 p.m. EDT). At that time, Danielle was about 475 miles southeast of Cape Race, Newfoundland, Canada near 41.3 North and 47.1 West and headed east-northeast at 15 mph. Her sustained winds were near 70 mph, but waning.

Danielle's effects are being felt along the shores of Newfoundland with heavy surf and waves up to 3 meters (10 feet).


EARL STILL A POWERFUL HURRICANE THREATENING THE U.S.

Hurricane Earl is a storm that's about 400 miles in diameter and the hurricane force winds are about 140 miles in diameter from side-to-side of the storm's eye. Earl is still a Category Four hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale, one category stronger that Hurricane Katrina was when she made landfall in Mississippi in 2005.

At 11 a.m. EDT on August 31, Hurricane Earl was located about 205 miles east of Grand Turk Island. That's about 1070 miles south-southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. Earl's center was located at 21.2 North and 67.9 West. Earl's maximum sustained winds were near 135 mph and he is moving west-northwest near 14 mph. Minimum central pressure is 939 millibars.

Earl's eye has become obscured in the latest imagery from the GOES-13 satellite, and the central pressure has increased. Forecasters believe that it's because Earl is undergoing "eyewall replacement." What that means is a new eye begins to develop around the old eye. The new eye gradually decreases in diameter and finally replaces the old eye.

Currently there is a warning and a watch in effect. A tropical storm warning is in effect for Turks and Caicos Islands and a tropical storm watch is in effect for the southeastern Bahamas. Meanwhile, residents from the Carolinas northward to New England should monitor the progress of Earl. A hurricane watch could be required for portions of the mid-Atlantic coast later today.


FIONA CAUSES WARNINGS AND WATCHES IN THE ISLANDS

Tropical Storm Fiona is battering the same areas that Hurricane Earl swept through days ago. A tropical storm warning is in effect for St. Martin and St. Barthelemy. A tropical storm watch is in effect for, Antigua, Barbuda, Montserrat, St. Kitts, Nevis, and Anguilla and St. Maarten, Saba, and St. Eustatius. The National Hurricane Center noted in its forecast this morning, August 31, Tropical storm conditions could spread over portions of the Northern Leeward Islands tonight or early Wednesday.

At 11 a.m. EDT, Tropical Storm Fiona had maximum sustained winds near 40 mph and some strengthening is possible. It was located about 440 miles east of the Leeward Islands near 15.9 N and 55.3 W. Fiona is moving west-northwest near 24 mph and is expected to slow down.

Estimated minimum central pressure is 1006 millibars. Fiona's forecast track does not take her behind Earl, so she does not appear to be a threat to the U.S. mainland at this time.

Earl and Fiona are two storms keeping NASA satellites busy this week, and providing the scientists on NASA's Hurricane Genesis and Rapid Intensification Processes (GRIP) experiment with a lot of data. To see what's happening with GRIP, visit: www.nasa.gov/grip/.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.



August 30, 2010

Hurricane Earl (left) and the low pressure area (right) that has a 90% chance of becoming Tropical Depression 8. > View larger image
GOES-13 visible satellite imagery on August 30 at 1445 UTC (10:45 a.m. EDT) showed powerful Hurricane Earl (left) and the low pressure area (right) that has a 90% chance of becoming Tropical Depression 8 moving west through the central Atlantic.
Credit: NASA/GOES Project
GOES-13 Sees Low Coming Together as Tropical Depression 8

GOES-13 visible satellite imagery on August 30 at 1445 UTC (10:45 a.m. EDT) captured powerful Hurricane Earl and the low pressure area that now has a 90% chance of becoming Tropical Depression 8 moving west through the central Atlantic.

The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite, GOES-13 is operated by NOAA, and NASA's GOES Project at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. creates images and animations from GOES data.

The low pressure area's showers and thunderstorms are gradually becoming better organized in association with a low pressure system located about 1050 miles east of the Lesser Antilles. Right now the National Hurricane Center gives the low a high chance of becoming tropical depression 8 in the next 48 hours. That may mean a one-two punch for the Leeward Islands. The low is moving west at about 20 mph.

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.



August 27, 2010

Clouds in this low pressure area appear in a circular formation, indicating that this system is likely getting organized. > View larger image
The AIRS instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured an image of a low that may become tropical depression 8, on August 27 at 03:23 UTC. The coldest, highest clouds appear in purple. Clouds associated with the low pressure area appeared in a circular formation, indicating that the system is likely getting organized.
Credit: NASA/JPL, Ed Olsen
Active Atlantic Actualizing An Eighth Depression?

The Atlantic Ocean hurricane season seems to be cranking out tropical cyclones one after another from the far eastern part of the ocean basin, and NASA satellite data makes it appear like the eighth tropical depression will be a reality over the weekend.

An active tropical wave may be responsible for the eighth tropical depression in the Atlantic Ocean basin over the weekend. Tropical waves have many names. They are called easterly waves, tropical easterly waves and even African easterly waves in the Atlantic Ocean region. A tropical wave is a kind of atmospheric trough (an elongated area of relatively low air pressure) that looks like a parenthesis, oriented north to south that move from the east to the west across the tropics. They contain areas of clouds and thunderstorms and can sometimes develop into a tropical cyclone.

NASA satellites and forecasters at the National Hurricane Center are watching a vigorous tropical wave for development into a tropical depression. That wave is accompanied by a broad low pressure area.

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument that flies aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured an image of cloud temperatures within the system and the warm sea surface temperatures that surround it on August 27 at 03:23 UTC (Aug. 26 at11:23 p.m. EDT). In the infrared image the clouds associated with the low pressure area appeared in a circular formation, indicating that the system is likely getting organized. The infrared image showed the strongest convection (rapidly rising air that condenses and forms clouds and thunderstorms) in the low appeared in the western and northern quadrants of the low, where cloud tops were as cold as or colder than -63 Fahrenheit. Clouds that cold mean that that they are very high in the troposphere and they are an indication of strong convection.

The low was located about 210 miles south-southeast of the southernmost Cape Verde Islands. The Republic of Cape Verde is an island country that includes an archipelago of ten islands in the central Atlantic Ocean, over 350 miles off the West African coast.

The low is in an environment that is conducive to development, low wind shear and warm sea surface temperatures (over 80 degrees Fahrenheit). It is moving westward at 15 mph. It appears likely that a tropical depression could form from this low over the weekend. If the storm intensifies and becomes a tropical storm it would get the name "Fiona."

Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.