Tag Archives: Ryukyu Islands

Tropical Storm Gaemi Brings Wind and Rain to Okinawa

Tropical Storm Gaemi brought wind and rain to Okinawa late on Friday.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Friday the center of Tropical Storm Gaemi was located at latitude 26.7°N and longitude 127.9°E which put it near Okinawa.  Gaemi was moving toward the east-northeast at 19 m.p.h (30 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 990 mb.

Tropical Storm Gaemi became better organized after it moved across southern Taiwan early on Friday.  The center of circulation was more evident on microwave satellite images.  A primary band of showers and thunderstorms formed in the eastern side of circulation.  Other showers and thunderstorms were located farther to the northeast of the center of Tropical Storm Gaemi.  An upper level trough west of Gaemi was producing string southwesterly winds which were blowing toward the top of the tropical storm.  Those winds were causing moderate vertical wind shear and they were likely the reason why most of the heavier rain was occurring northeast of the center of circulation.

The upper level trough was also steering Tropical Storm Gaemi quickly toward the east-northeast.  On its anticipated track Gaemi will move over the middle Ryukyu Islands including Amami-O-Shima during the next 12 hours.  Tropical Storm Gaemi will continue to produce gusty winds and locally heavy rain.  Most of the rain will fall before the center of circulation reaches a location.  Gaemi is likely to make a transition to an extratropical cyclone when it moves south of the larger islands of Japan during the weekend.

Tropical Storm Gaemi Forms Near Southwest Taiwan

Tropical Storm Gaemi formed near Kaohsiung on the southwest coast of Taiwan late on Thursday.  At 8:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday the center of Tropical Storm Gaemi was located at latitude 22.8°N and longitude 120.2°E which put it near Kaohsiung, Taiwan.  Gaemi was moving toward the northeast at 5 m.p.h. (8 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 992 mb.

A distinct low level center of circulation developed in an area of showers and thunderstorms southwest of Taiwan on Thursday and the Japan Meteorological Agency designated the system as Tropical Storm Gaemi.  Thunderstorms developed near the core of the circulation.  Several short bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core.  Mountains in eastern Taiwan may have deflected the flow in the lower levels and contributed to the organization of a center of circulation.  Storms around the center were generating some upper level divergence which was pumping mass away to the east of the tropical storm.

Tropical Storm Gaemi is likely to weaken during the next few hours while the center of circulation moves across southern Taiwan.  Mountains in eastern Taiwan could disrupt the lower portions of the circulation when it moves over them.  If the circulation still exists when it moves east of Taiwan in a few hours, then Tropical Storm Gaemi will move into a more favorable environment for intensification.  Gaemi will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  An upper level trough over eastern Asia is producing southwesterly winds which are blowing toward the top of the circulation.  Those winds will cause some vertical wind shear, but the shear will probably not be strong enough to tear the circulation apart.  Gaemi could remain a tropical storm for another 24 to 36 hours.  When Tropical Storm Gaemi moves farther north in a day or two, it will move over colder water and into an area with stronger vertical wind shear.  Gaemi will likely make a transition to an extratropical cyclone at that time.

The upper level trough is forecast to steer Tropical Storm Gaemi toward the northeast.  Gaemi will move across southern Taiwan during the next few hours.  It will cause gusty winds, but the greater risks will be heavy rain and flash floods.  On its anticipated track Tropical Storm Gaemi will move near the southern Ryukyu Islands of Japan.  It could pass near Ishigaki Jima and Miyako Jima in the next 12 to 18 hours.  Gaemi could be near Okinawa later on Friday.

Typhoon Saola Near Okinawa

The core of Typhoon Saola moved near Okinawa on Friday night.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Friday the center of Typhoon Saola was near latitude 26.2°N and longitude 128.2°E which put it about 70 miles (110 km) south of Okinawa.  Saola was moving toward the north at 14 m.p.h. (22 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 75 m.p.h. (120 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 90 m.p.h. (145 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 979 mb.

The circulation of Typhoon Saola became more well organized on Friday.   The primary rainband wrapped most of the way around the center of circulation.  A large eye was surrounded by a broken ring of showers and thunderstorms.  Low clouds and showers were scattered throughout the large eye.  Several other bands of showers and storms were revolving around the core of Typhoon Saola.  The rainbands were weaker on the northwestern side of Typhoon Saola and there appeared to be cooler, drier air on that side of the typhoon.  Winds to typhoon force extended out about 50 miles (80 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 200 miles (320 km) from the center.

Typhoon Saola could be near its maximum intensity.  Saola will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  However Typhoon Saola is near the upper level westerly winds in the middle latitudes and the vertical wind shear will increase on Saturday.  Typhoon Saola could strengthen a little more during the next six to twelve hours, but it will start to weaken when the vertical wind shear increases.

Typhoon Saola is moving around the western end of a ridge which is steering Saola toward the north.  When Typhoon Saola reaches the westerly winds of the middle latitudes, those winds will turn Saola toward the east-northeast.  On its anticipated track Typhoon Saola will bring strong winds and heavy rain to Okinawa and the Ryukyu Islands.  The center of Typhoon Saola will be near southern Kyushu in about 12 hours and the center could pass near Tokyo in about 24 hours.

Tropical Storm Saola Strengthens, Moves Toward Okinawa

Tropical Storm strengthened on Thursday as it moved closer to Okinawa.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday the center of Tropical Storm Saola was located at latitude 22.2°N and longitude 129.4°E which put it about 350 miles (570 km) south-southeast of Okinawa.  Saola was moving toward the north-northwest at 17 m.p.h. (27 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 75 m.p.h. (120 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 987 mb.

The circulation of Tropical Storm Saola exhibited more organization in recent hours.  For much of the past several days many of the showers and thunderstorms were in a single primary rainband that wrapped around the outer part of the circulation.  There were few showers or storms near and to the north of the center of circulation.  A broken ring of showers and thunderstorms began to develop around the center during the past few hours.  The ring could represent the initial formation of an eyewall.  Additional bands of showers and thunderstorms also began to form outside the core of Tropical Storm Saola.

Tropical Storm Saola will be moving through an environment that will be favorable for intensification during the next 24 hours.  Saola will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  The winds will be similar in all levels of the atmosphere and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Storm Saola will intensify on Friday and it could become a typhoon.  After about 24 hours Tropical Storm Saola will reach the upper level westerly winds in the middle latitudes and the vertical wind shear will increase.  More wind shear will start to weaken Saola.

Tropical Storm Saola was moving the western end of a ridge which is steering the tropical storm toward the north-northwest and that general motion is expected to continue for about another 24 hours.  On its anticipated track Tropical Storm Saola will approach Okinawa in about 24 hours.  When Saola nears Okinawa, it will encounter the westerly winds in the middle latitudes.  Those winds will turn Saola toward the northeast.  Tropical Storm Saola will bring gusty winds and locally heavy rain to Okinawa and the Ryukyu Islands.

Typhoon Lan Heads North and Strengthens

Typhoon Lan headed northward and strengthened on Thursday.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday the center of Typhoon Lan was located at latitude 19.2°N and longitude 130.0°E which put it about 550 miles (885 km) south-southeast of Okinawa.  Lan was moving toward the north at 10 m.p.h. (16 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 125 m.p.h. (200 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 956 mb.

Lan strengthened into a large powerful typhoon on Thursday.  A big circular eye developed at the core of Typhoon Lan.  The eye was not perfectly clear.  There was a small area of convection at the center of the eye and there was a clear moat around that area.  A ring of thunderstorms surrounded the eye and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Multiple bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the typhoon.  Lan is a very large typhoon.  Winds to typhoon force extended out up to 140 miles (225 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out up to 305 miles (490 km) from the center

The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Typhoon Lan was 16.5.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) was 46.8 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) was 63.3.  The circulation of Typhoon Lan is almost as large as the circulation of Hurricane Sandy was when Sandy hit the U.S. in 2012.

Typhoon Lan will be moving through an environment favorable for further intensification.  Lan will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  It will move through and area where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Typhoon Lan could intensify into the equivalent of a major hurricane during the next day or two.

Typhoon Lan is moving around the western end of a subtropical ridge which is steering the typhoon toward the north.  Lan is likely to continue to move toward the north on Friday.  The typhoon will be affected by westerly winds when it moves farther north.  Those winds will cause Typhoon Lan to move more toward the north-northeast during the weekend.  On its anticipated track the center of Typhoon Lan could pass southeast of Okinawa in 24 to 36 hours.  Lan could approach Honshu within three days.

Typhoon Talim Strengthens West of Okinawa, Doksuri Moves Closer to Vietnam

Powerful Typhoon Talim strengthened west of Okinawa on Wednesday, while Typhoon Doksuri moved closer toward Vietnam.  At 8:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Typhoon Talim was located at latitude 26.6°N and longitude 124.6°E which put it about 210 miles (335 km) west of Okinawa.  Talim was moving toward north-northwest at 7 m.p.h. (11 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 130 m.p.h. (215 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 160 m.p.h. (260 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 937 mb.

Talim evolved into a large powerful typhoon on Wednesday.  A large circular eye with a diameter of 60 miles (95 km) developed at the center of Typhoon Talim.  A ring of strong thunderstorms surrounded the eye and the strongest winds were occurring in those storms.  Numerous bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Talim.  The thunderstorms in the core of Talim were producing upper level divergence that was pumping mass away from the typhoon.

Typhoon Talim will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  The upper level winds are weak over the core of Talim, but there are stronger westerly winds north of the typhoon.  Talim could strengthen some more during the next 24 hours.  However, the stronger upper level winds will increase the vertical wind shear on Friday and the typhoon will start to weaken when that happens.

Typhoon Talim is moving around the western end of a subtropical ridge, which is steering the typhoon toward the north-northwest.  Typhoon Talim will move north on Thursday as it rounds the western end of the ridge.  The westerly winds north of Talim will turn the typhoon toward the northeast on Friday.  On its anticipated track Typhoon Talim could approach Kyushu in two or three days.

Tropical Storm Doksuri strengthened on Wednesday as it moved closer to Vietnam.  At 8:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Typhoon Doksuri was located at latitude 16.2°N and longitude 112.2°E which put it about 470 miles (760 km) east-southeast of Vinh, Vietnam.  Doksuri was moving toward the west-northwest at 14 m.p.h. (22 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 75 m.p.h. (120 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 90 m.p.h. (145 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 978 mb.

The circulation of Doksuri became much more organized on Wednesday.  A primary rainband wrapped around the center of circulation and an eye appeared to be developing.  Additional bands of showers and thunderstorms developed and began to revolved around the core of Doksuri.  Thunderstorms round the core were generating upper level divergence which pumped mass away from the typhoon.

Typhoon Doksuri will be moving through an environment that will be favorable for intensification on Thursday.  Doksuri will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  An upper level ridge over eastern Asia is producing easterly winds which are causing some vertical wind shear over Doksuri.  The wind shear may slow intensification, but it will not stop it.

The ridge north of Doksuri is steering the typhoon toward the west-northwest.  On its anticipated track the center of Typhoon Doksuri is forecast to pass south of Hainan Island.  Typhoon Doksuri could approach the coast of Vietnam in a little over 24 hours.  Doksuri could bring strong winds and heavy rain to northern Vietnam.  The heavy rain could cause flash floods.

Typhoon Talim Nears Ryuku Islands

Typhoon Talim neared the Ryukyu Islands late on Tuesday.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Typhoon Talim was located at latitude 24.4°N and longitude 126.3°E which put it about 125 miles (200 km) east of Ishigaki, Japan.  Talim was moving toward the northwest at 12 m.p.h. (19 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 85 m.p.h. (135 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 105 m.p.h. (170 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 967 mb.

A large circular eye formed at the center of Typhoon Talim on Tuesday.  The eye was surrounded by a ring of strong thunderstorms and the strongest winds were occurring in those storms.  Additional bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of the circulation.  The entire circulation became much more circular and symmetrical.  The thunderstorms in the core of Talim were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the center of circulation.

Typhoon Talim will move through an environment favorable for intensification for several more days.  Talim is moving over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  An upper level ridge northeast of Talim is producing easterly winds that are blowing toward the top of the circulation.  Those winds are not as strong as the were 24 hours ago and the vertical wind shear has decreased.  Typhoon Talim is likely to intensify further during the next 24 to 48 hours.

Typhoon Talim is moving near the western end of a subtropical ridge which is steering the typhoon toward the northwest.  Talim is expected to turn toward the north as it rounds the western end of the ridge.  In 24 to 48 hours Talim will begin to be affected by westerly winds from the middle latitudes.  Those winds will cause Typhoon Talim to turn toward the northeast.  On its anticipated track Typhoon Talim will move across the Ryukyu Islands on Wednesday.  It looks like the center and strongest part of Typhoon Talim will move between Ishigaki and Okinawa.  Typhoon Talim will bring strong gusty winds and locally heavy rain to the southern Ryukyu Islands.  The core of Typhoon Talim is forecast to pass west of Okinawa before it turns northeast toward the larger islands of Japan.

Elsewhere in Western North Pacific, Tropical Storm Doksuri was slowly intensifying as it moved west of the Philippines.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Tropical Storm Doksuri was located at latitude 14.6°N and longitude 116.6°E which put it about 760 miles (1225 km) east-southeast of Vinh, Vietnam.  Doksuri was moving toward the west at 15 m.p.h. (24 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 995 mb.

The circulation of Tropical Storm Doksuri became more organized on Tuesday.  Numerous bands of showers and thunderstorms formed and began to revolve around the center or circulation.  Storms near the core began to generate upper level divergence.  Tropical Storm Doksuri will be moving through a favorable environment.  Doksuri will move over warm Sea Surface Temperatures and through and area where the upper level winds are not too strong.  Tropical Storm Doksuri is likely to intensify and it could eventually strengthen into a typhoon.  Tropical Storm Doksuri is forecast to continue moving  toward the west.  On its anticipated track Doksuri could be near Hainan Island in 48 hours and it could approach the coast of Vietnam in about three days.

Typhoon Noru Bringing Wind and Rain to Northern Ryukyu Islands

Typhoon Noru was bringing gusty winds and heavy rain to the northern Ryukyu Islands on Friday.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Friday the center of Typhoon Noru was located at latitude 29.3°N and longitude 130.3°E which put it about 90 miles (140 km) south of Kagoshima, Japan.  Noru was moving toward the northwest at 4 m.p.h. (6 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 90 m.p.h. (140 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 115 m.p.h. (185 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 959 mb.

The structure of Typhoon Noru has not changed much during the past 24 hours.  A large eye with a diameter of approximately 80 miles (130 km) occupies the center of the typhoon.  A broken eyewall surrounds the eye.  Strong thunderstorms surround the eastern side of the eye, while a broken ring of weaker showers and storms mark the western edge of the eye.  The strongest winds are occurring in the thunderstorms on the eastern edge of the eye.  Thunderstorms in the core of the circulation are generating upper level divergence which is pumping away mass in all directions.  A primary rainband extends from the eastern side of Typhoon Noru around the southern and western sides of the circulation.  Several other shorter bands are outside this primary rainband.  Typhoon Noru continues to exhibit a structure similar to an annular hurricane.

Although the core of Typhoon Noru is fairly large, the overall size of the storm is not as big as some typhoons.  Winds to typhoon force extend out about 40 miles in all directions from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extend out about 160 miles (260 km) from the center.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Typhoon Noru is 13.9.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) is 17.0 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) is 30.9.

Typhoon Noru will be in an environment favorable for intensification for about another 24 hours.  Noru will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  An upper level ridge north of Noru is producing northerly winds which are blowing toward the top of the typhoon.  Those winds are fairly weak and there is not much vertical wind shear.  Typhoon Noru is likely to intensify during the next 24 hours and it could strengthen into the equivalent of a major hurricane again.  In a day or so, an upper level trough will approach from the west and wind shear will increase.  Typhoon Noru will weaken faster after it makes landfall in Kyushu.

Typhoon Noru is moving slowly around the western end of a subtropical ridge.  Noru is in an area where the steering currents are weak and the will remain weak for another 24 to 48 hours.  An upper level trough will approach Noru from the west in a day or so.  Southwesterly winds ahead of the trough will start to steer Typhoon Noru toward the northeast at a faster rate.  On its anticipated track Typhoon Noru could make landfall in Kyushu in less than 36 hours.

The large core and strength of Typhoon Noru make it capable of bringing strong winds and heavy rain to a large area.  Typhoon Noru will continue to bring wind and rain to the northern Ryukyu Islands for another 24 to 36 hours.  Noru could also cause wind damage, heavy rain and floods on Kyushu, Shikoku and western Honshu when it moves over those regions.

Typhoon Noru Threatens Southwestern Japan

Typhoon Noru posed an increased threat to southwestern Japan as it slowly moved closer on Thursday.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday the center of Typhoon Noru was located at latitude 28.6°N and longitude 131.3°E which put it about 145 miles (235 km) south-southeast of Kagoshima, Japan.  Noru was moving toward the west at 8 m.p.h. (13 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 85 m.p.h. (135 km/h) and there were gusts to 105 m.p.h. (170 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 962 mb.

Although Noru is still a powerful and dangerous typhoon, it is not quite as well organized as it was several days ago.  A very large eye with a diameter of 95 miles (150 km) is at the center of circulation.  A broken ring of thunderstorms surrounds the eye.  There are breaks on both the eastern and western sides of the eyewall.  A broad rainband wraps around the southern and eastern sides of the circulation.  Thunderstorms in the core of Noru are generating strong upper level divergence which is pumping mass away from the typhoon.  There are few showers and thunderstorms in the northwestern quadrant and there may be drier air in that part of Typhoon Noru.

Winds to typhoon force extend out about 40 miles (65 km/h) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extend out about 185 miles (295 km/h) from the center.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Typhoon Noru is 12.7.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) is 16.4 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) is 29.1

Typhoon Noru will move through an environment that may be somewhat favorable for intensification.  Noru will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  An upper level ridge northwest of Noru is producing northeasterly winds which are blowing toward the top of the typhoon.  Those winds are creating moderate vertical wind shear.  The typhoon could also pull in drier air on the northwestern side of the circulation.  Even though the environmental factors are mixed, some intensification may be possible during the next 24 to 48 hours.

Typhoon Noru is approaching the western end of a subtropical ridge which has been steering the typhoon toward the west.  Noru is forecast to slow as the steering currents weaken.  Typhoon Noru is forecast to turn slowly northward during the next 24 hours.  In about 48 hours westerly winds in the middle latitudes will begin to carry the typhoon more quickly toward the northeast.  On its anticipated track Typhoon Noru could approach the northern Ryukyu Islands on Friday.  It could bring strong winds to Amami-O-Shima.  The center could pass near Yaku-Shima and Tanega-Shima during the weekend.  In a little over two days Typhoon Noru could reach southwestern Kyushu.  Typhoon Noru has the potential to bring strong winds and heavy rain to parts of southwestern Japan during the next few days.  The heavy rain could also cause flash floods.

Tropical Storm Nanmadol Brings Wind and Rain to Southern Ryukyu Islands

Tropical Storm Nanmadol brought wind and rain to the southern Ryukyu Islands on Sunday.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Tropical Storm Nanmadol was located at latitude 24.4°N and longitude 124.7°E which put it about 40 miles (65 km) east of Ishigaki, Japan.  Nanmadol was moving toward the north-northwest at 21 m.p.h. (34 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 998 mb.

The core of Tropical Storm Nanmadol continued to organize on Sunday.  A ring of thunderstorms wrapped tightly around the center of circulation.  Additional bands of showers and thunderstorms formed outside the core.  Thunderstorms were beginning to generate more upper level divergence which was pumping out mass in all directions.  The circulation of Tropical Storm Nanmadol was fairly small.  Winds to tropical storm force only extend out about 70 miles (110 km) from the center.

Tropical Storm Nanmadol will be in an environment that is very favorable for intensification for about another 24 hours.  Nanmadol will be moving over water where the Sea Surface Temperature (SST) is near 29°C.  The circulation of Tropical Storm Nanmadol is underneath the center of an upper level ridge and the upper level winds are very weak.  Warm SSTs and almost no vertical wind shear will permit Tropical Storm Nanmadol to intensify during the next day and there could be a period of rapid intensification.  Nanmadol could strengthen into a typhoon before it reaches a less favorable environment.  The tropical storm will move over cooler SSTs and it will move into an area of stronger upper level westerly winds in a couple of days.  Nanmadol will begin to weaken when that happens.

Tropical Storm Nanmadol is moving around the western end of a subtropical ridge which is steering it toward the north.  A general northward motion is expected to continue for about another 24 hours.  Nanmadol will reach the westerly winds in the middle latitudes in about a day and those winds will turn it toward the northeast.  On its anticipated track the center of Tropical Storm Nanmadol will pass west of Okinawa.  Nanmadol could approach Kyushu in about 36 hours.  Tropical Storm Nanmadol will continue to cause gusty winds and locally heavy rain over the southern Ryukyu Islands for another 12 to 24 hours.