Tropical Cyclone Maha formed over the Arabian Sea southwest of India on Wednesday. At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Maha was located at latitude 11.0°N and longitude 73.3°E which put it about 140 miles (225 km) southwest of Mangalore, India. Maha was moving toward the northwest at 11 m.p.h. (17 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 997 mb.
More thunderstorms formed near the center of a low pressure over the Arabian Sea west of the southern tip of India on Wednesday and the India Meteorological Department designated the system as Tropical Cyclone Maha. The circulation around Tropical Cyclone Maha was still organizing on Wednesday. Bands of showers and thunderstorms were forming and the bands were starting to revolve around the center of Maha. The strongest thunderstorms were occurring in bands in the western half of the circulation. Some thunderstorms were also forming in bands in the eastern half of the tropical cyclone, but the proximity to southern India may have been making the air a little drier in that part of Maha. Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 80 miles (130 km) from the center of circulation.
Tropical Cyclone Maha will move through an environment favorable for intensification during the next few days. Maha will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C. It will move underneath the axis of an upper level ridge running east to west over India and the eastern Arabian Sea. The upper level winds will be weak and there will not be a lot of vertical wind shear during the next day or two. Tropical Cyclone Maha will continue to intensify and it is forecast to strengthen into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon. Maha could strengthen more quickly once an inner core with an eye and an eyewall develop.
The middle portion of the upper level ridge will steer Tropical Cyclone Maha toward the northwest during the next 48 hours. When Maha reaches the northern Arabian Sea a second ridge of high pressure over South Asia will steer the tropical cyclone toward the west. On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Maha will move parallel to the west coast of India.
Elsewhere over the Arabian Sea, Tropical Cyclone Kyarr was weakening rapidly southeast of Oman. The circulation pulled drier air from the Arabian peninsula into the core of Kyarr and most of the thunderstorms dissipated when the drier air reached them. At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Kyarr was located at latitude 18.3°N and longitude 60.7°E which put it about 190 miles (305 km) southeast of Masirah Island, Oman. Kyarr was moving toward the southwest at 6 m.p.h. (10 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.