"But seeing they could not See; hearing they could not Hear"
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"From its chamber comes the whirlwind, and cold from the scattering winds." - Job 37:9.

"The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course".

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Some "Locally" Heavy Rain Possible Today, Will Atlantis Soar Over the Atlantic Tomorrow?

Sunset Wednesday Night, Cape Canaveral
View Is Looking East as the sun's rays capture the top of this very tall, tropical like rain storm off shore

UPPER LEVEL LOW in Gulf. Arrows show the general direction
of cirrus cloud spread  from storm tops. Black area shows where there is less cloud coverage and more unstable air as of  11AM
SYNOPSIS / "SITUATION" TODAY: Not a whole lot has actually changed from yesterday, outside of some subtle, yet profound differences. Namely, the atmosphere over all of the state is more moist, rather than limited to the southern portion of the state as was the case yesterday. The other item of interest is an elongated inverted trough just off the east coast. This is related to a weak closed circulation which was pointed out yesterday near the western Bahamas. The circulation lifted north to barely just east of the Cape early this morning and is continuing a bit east of due north. Otherwise, the strong upper level low remains over the Gulf of Mexico, and is clearing evident on satellite animation with time ('movies') as shown in the image above.

TODAY'S WEATHER: After  hemming and hawing over model differences regarding exactly where it will rain today, I'm opting out on leaning toward ANY model. Instead, riding with experience. There is clearly no  lack of moisture anywhere today (more in some places in others, but not by much); however, there are some differences in the mid-levels  heading into North Central Florida and toward the Panhandle where rain chances are reduced. 

Otherwise, ongoing convection over far South Florida is leading me to believe that Dade and parts of Broward County might be having most of their rainfall as I write. After looking at the KSC sounding, it was determined that the convective temperature was 83F. Easily to be reached, and in fact, that is what the temperature is now. For all I know, a storm is brewing as I write!  

However, there is some cloud coverage to deal with. Winds are very light today at all levels below 20,000 ft. With both conditions in place combined with the bizarre placement of low and high pressure systems, a sea breeze collision is highly unlikely any where. Additionally, any sea breeze that can form will be so light and remain close enough to the coast that it will have very little bearing  in regard to storm initiation. Likely, storms will form from boundaries that were left over from yesterday in the most favored area today, which is over land.  And near where Land/water boundaries are located such as west of the intracoastals and near inland lakes. 

All convection over night sticks to the warm waters, and during the day it sticks to the land  (and well off shore).   So based only on the past, the biggest impact will be very heavy rains in localized areas due to the mass quantity of atmospheric moisture available and slow storm motions. Other storms could start to trigger off from outflow boundaries by earlier storms, with the peak of activity from 12:30pm - 4:30pm. 

IN BLACK is shown where I'm thinking the best chance for a thunderstorm COULD occur today, that will produce more than just 2-5 lightning strikes.  Otherwise, ANY shower could produce even just 1 lightning strike. Most activity today will be primarily heavy rain, but there could be just a few good lightning makers state wide. Most likely within the area in black west of US1.

One other item I'm watching for  today. It may very well be that those who live along the immediate barrier islands or anywhere along A1A north of Vero Beach toward South Brevard might never seen any heavy rain at all today. Reasoning? With such light steering winds, storms will want to hold on to the land mass. 

Thus, the folks closer to US1 are more likely to get heavier rains (at least for any duration) than those at the beach...with the heaviest amounts west of US1 toward I-95 and further inland.  Rainfall totals could be as high as 3" in one or two locations, and as low as ZERO in others.  Most rains over land should end shortly after sunset, if not sooner after loss of daytime heating, coupled with the atmosphere having been stabilized from the heavy rains and cloud cover. 

There is a chance some rains could occur over night though in just the reverse pattern, that being, lighter rain showers near the coasts at almost any time.

LAUNCH DAY: Hey, maybe the launch could go if tomorrow is anything like today. There is little in storms around other than South Brevard as I write (and JUST found out. How's that for reaching the convective temperature as noted in the previous paragraph?; however, there is considerable high and mid level cloud coverage. If that factor will prevent a launch, then it would be a "No Go". I'm not completely learned, nor could I locate, the exact  'cloud ceiling' criteria to prevent a launch, although I thought I had read it can be as low as 3000 ft (do not fully trust the source).  Do not believe "Cumulus Clouds" will be a factor if tomorrow is like today. But never say never. In short, the 70% chance of a "No Go" as I've learned this morning sounds as good as any.

BEYOND/TROPICAL: The Hurricane Center is watching an area between South Florida and Honduras. The area is given a 10 percent chance of development, but at this time the chances look slim considering that longer range models indicate persist shearing further north from  the upper level winds (which are unfavorable). Remember the first image above showing the closed upper level low which is expected to meander for several days.  But given time, should the system stay south for who knows how long, it could develop. And if it does so, then who knows which way it would go considering that other factors within the atmosphere (namely wind fields) would have changed by that time. As it stands NOW though, it will not develop.

In the extended to cut to the chase. Latest Long Range is showing continued plentiful moisture in place more often than not heading toward the last week of July, around the 21st. Not everyday, everywhere, in the same places. Naturally, wind fields and other variables will change (as they are even just today let alone 3 days from now or longer in time). In other words, not seeing a return to drought conditions any time soon. Maybe one day it will actually rain more trace where this writer lives. Not sure why I even have a rain gauge. 

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