Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tropical Storm Kulap Update #1

NOTE: Tropical Storm Noru has already transitioned into an extra tropical cyclone. Both JMA and JTWC gave final warnings late last night. Therefore, we won't be giving updates anymore on TS Noru.

A new tropical storm has formed in the Western Pacific--Kulap. TS Kulap is a fairly small system that consolidated outside the Philippine Area of Responsibility. It was last located approximately 1,400km northeast of Luzon. Maximum sustained winds are at 65kph gusting to 95kph. Kulap is moving north northeastward at around 10kph.

JMA has upgraded this to a TS earlier this morning while the JTWC hasn't. It, however, has already issued a TCFA and is expected to start issuing numbered warnings on Kulap later this afternoon.

Looking at the IR imagery, Kulap is maintaining a compact structure with convective activity nicely forming in and around the low-level center. A poleward outflow channel is also beginning to be established which could lead to further intensification down the road.

Image from NRLMRY

Latest computer model guidance keep Kulap as a weak system throughout its lifetime. However, these models are not really initializing well with regard to the position and strength of Kulap so we won't be surprised if the guidance shift forecasts from run to run. Nevertheless, looking at the overall upper-level pattern in place, we are expecting TS Kulap to continue moving slowly to the northeast. A very strong upper-level low or ULL (remnants of Talas) over Eastern Russia has weakened the Subtropical High (STR) which is now over the Northern Pacific. This will allow an opening for Kulap to move into. By the time the week ends, the forecast is for the ULL to move north which could allow the STR to restrengthen in the area south of Japan. The timing of all these will, of course, be critical as to the eventual movement of Kulap. Rest assured that we will keep on closely monitoring this system on its progress.

I will have another update later this evening.
Issued (0530 UTC) 130pm PhT 090711

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