Tropical Cyclone Alcide Forms North of Mauritius

Tropical Cyclone Alcide formed north of Mauritius on Tuesday.  At 10:00 a.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Alcide was located at latitude 9.7°S and longitude 58.9°E which put it about 740 miles (1190 km) north of Port Louis, Mauritius.  Alcide was moving toward the west-southwest at 10 m.p.h. (16 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 40 m.p.h. (65 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 999 mb.

A distinct center of circulation consolidated in an area of thunderstorms over the South Indian Ocean and the system was designated as Tropical Cyclone Alcide.  The circulation around Alcide was slowly becoming better organized.  The inner end of a band of thunderstorms was wrapping around the western side of the center of circulation.  Several other bands were developing south and west of the center.  Bands north and east of the center consisted primarily of showers and lower clouds.  Storms near the center of circulation were starting to generate upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the core of the tropical cyclone.

Tropical Cyclone Alcide will move through an environment that will support intensification.  Alcide will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 27.5°C.  It will move around the northwestern side of an upper level ridge.  The ridge will produce easterly winds which will blow toward the top of the circulation.  Those winds will cause some vertical wind shear which will slow the rate of intensification, but the winds are not likely to be strong enough to prevent intensification.  Tropical Cyclone Alcide could strengthen into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon during the next 48 to 72 hours.

The upper level ridge will steer Tropical Cyclone Alcide slowly toward the west-southwest during the next two or three days.  On its anticipated track Alcide could be northeast of Madagascar in a few days.  It could be the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon at that time.

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