Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Tropical Storm Noul Update #3

Issued (03 UTC) 11am PhT 050615

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Tropical Storm Noul continues to intensify as it moves away from the island of Yap. The storm center was last located approximately 100km west of Yap or about 360km northeast of Palau. Maximum sustained winds are now at 110kph with gusts of up to 140kph. TS Noul is currently moving westward at 10kph.

IR Image from NRLMRY

Latest satellite image shows the central dense overcast becoming more symmetrical this morning. Spiral banding also continues to improve and radial outflow remains excellent. Favorable conditions exist and will allow for continued intensification. Noul is expected to become a typhoon later this afternoon.

As for Yap, weather conditions are forecast to improve today. Winds of up to 100kph and continuous heavy rains were reported in the island last night during the height of the storm.

Forecast Track (NOT OFFICIAL!)

There has been little change in our forecast track for Noul. Computer models have held steady, if not shift left, with their respective tracks. We still expect Noul to continue its west northwestward movement over the next few days. It will enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility and will be given the local name 'Bagyong Dodong' by PAGASA.

Based on the current computer model consensus and analysis of atmospheric conditions in the Pacific, Noul will be taking a northward turn this weekend. However, the timing of this northward turn will be crucial as it will eventually determine how close Noul will get to the Philippines.

Our current track and forecast philosophy is aligned more to the west-based camp and therefore, is showing a possible landfall in Northern Luzon by Sunday. However, please note that our confidence in this track is still low at this point. We hope to have more confidence in the next 24 to 48 hours when we see more consensus and consistency in the computer model outputs.

Either way, we want to stress the potential threat that this system may bring to the Philippines. We advise residents, especially in Eastern Visayas, Bicol Region, and Northern Luzon to pay close attention in the coming days with regard to Tropical Storm Noul's movement and forecast track.

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