Monday, September 3, 2012

Leslie looking better today.

The satellite presentation from Leslie looks much different than 24 hours ago. From visible satellite loops earlier in the day, the center circulation started out exposed from the vigorous convection to the south and east. Latest satellite interrogation shows the convection is wrapping around the circulation again late this afternoon. This likely signifies a storm at least better better organized. Also think this may induce a period of intensification for several reasons. Here is a look at Leslie 
The ripples near the brightest white are gravity waves propagating outward from the deep convective burst. This image is a little old, couple of hours, but shows the convection engulfing the center of circulation. The image below shows how intense the convection really is with -80 Celsius and colder cloud tops. 
The forecast track has shifted ever so slightly to the west likely due to the forecast models as we haven't really had any trends to follow for the last day or two. The forecast will likely change over the next few cycles as the storm gets its act together so this is not hard and fast yet. My thoughts are if the storm moves west of Bermuda this places the Island in the higher risk area of Leslie. The right front quadrant has statistically the highest winds, more likely to have tornadoes, and greatest storm tides/surge. Recent Oceansat 2 satellite pass shows the winds around Leslie quite well.
The winds are highest on the east side of the storm which reinforces the idea of the right front quadrant as the most potent area of the storm. Another reason that Leslie may intensify is that the shearing around the storm has relaxed, as has the shear tendency.

The NHC wind probabilities indicate that the chance of Leslie reaching hurricane strength is about 50%. Again I think that this may change sometime through the next few forecast cycles due to the more favorable environment around the storm, and better storm-centric  organization. 
The next few graphics show the numerical probabilities, and updated Tropical Storm/Hurricane force winds graphics. 

For my friends in Bermuda, the best advice I can offer is to be prepared. Speak with people that have been there a long time as they will have local experience that will prove invaluable. The folks along New England should be keep a watchful eye on Leslie just in case. I do think the models, especially the GFS...Global Forecast System...have a good handle on the track after 5 days taking the storm, northward, then northeastward with the greatest impact to the Canadian Maritimes before heading out to the North Atlantic. 
I will keep an eye on this one. Leslie is at least proving interesting from a forecasters point of view. Last note...surfers along the Eastern Seaboard, and the boarder islands between the Caribbean and Atlantic are going to have great surf. 
Be safe,

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