Monday, August 20, 2012

Tropical Storm Bolaven Update #2

TD 96W has intensified into a Tropical Storm near the Marianas. Tropical Storm Bolaven was last located approximately 590km northwest of Guam. Maximum sustained winds are now at 65kph with gusts of up to 85kph.Bolaven is currently moving north northwestward at 10kph.

IR Image from NRLMRY

Latest satellite image shows the central dense overcast (CDO) of Bolaven becoming more consolidated. The system has both equatorward and poleward outflow. Convection also continues to fire up, especially near the center. The image above also shows a cluster of thunderstorms to the east which are the remnants of 98W and could be absorbed into Bolaven's circulation in the next 24 to 36 hours. Despite the good environment, we think Bolaven will intensify at a fairly slow pace as it merges with 98W. Once it consolidates, perhaps by Wednesday, Bolaven will intensify at a faster pace.

Forecast Track (NOT OFFICIAL!)

Tropical Storm Bolaven will continue moving north northwestward in the next 12 hours and should then start turning generally westward as the Subtropical Ridge steers the system. Meso-anticyclone, warm sea surface temperatures, and improving outflow channels should all help Bolaven intensify quickly beginning Wednesday. It will likely become a Typhoon by Wednesday morning. Depending on the environment, there is a chance that Bolaven will undergo rapid intensification by Thursday or Friday. Most computer models are forecasting Bolaven to become a very strong typhoon by this weekend.

Due to the time frame, the cone of uncertainty is still pretty wide and anywhere from Northern Luzon all the way to Ryukyu Islands should continue to monitor the developments of Bolaven. However, the consensus of computer models and forecasting agencies is to take Bolaven near Okinawa by Saturday. This scenario is still uncertain as Bolaven could still wobble and change its track in the coming days.

Another factor being watched is the possible Fujiwhara Effect between Bolaven and Tembin (Igme). Due to the distance and speed of the two systems, the chance of interaction remains very small

We'll have another update on Bolaven tomorrow. Stay safe!
Issued (0930 UTC) 530pm PhT 082012

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