Issued (2330 UTC) 730am PhT 102313
Lekima has rapidly intensified overnight and is now a Category 5 Super Typhoon! The eye of Lekima was last located approximately 1,010km northeast of Guam. Maximum sustained winds are now at 260kph with gusts of up to 315kph. Super Typhoon Lekima is currently moving west northwestward at 30kph.
IR Image from FNMOC
Latest satellite image shows a well-defined eye surrounded by deep and strong convective activity. Radial outflow is also really good and has helped Lekima with the rapid intensification, together with the very warm sea surface temperatures in the region. Lekima should maintain that intensity, if not increase a little bit more, for the next 24 hours as the conditions remain favorable for supporting strong tropical cyclones.
Super Typhoon Lekima will move north of the Mariana Islands today and shouldn't bring any significant impacts in the region. It may cause high waves across the islands and that is why the National Weather Service has issued high surf advisory in the northern sections. But strong winds and heavy rain are not expected.
Lekima should also begin turning more to the north by tomorrow as the subtropical ridge in the Northern Pacific weakens. It will move well east of Iwo To and the Bonin Islands and shouldn't significantly affect that island chain either.
Lekima should begin to weaken by tomorrow as it encounters cooler sea surface temperatures and stronger wind shear. It is forecast to recurve to the northeast and should not impact Japan or any other major land areas.
We'll have another update later today.