Debby, a lot of clouds, wind, rain – but no hurricane

NASA Sees Tropical Storm Debby’s Clouds Blanket Florida

MODIS captured this visible image of Tropical Storm Debby spinning in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico on Sunday, June 24.

This visible image of Tropical Storm Debby spinning in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico was captured on Sunday, June 24 at 3:00 p.m. EDT from the MODIS instrument on NASA’s Aqua satellite. Credit: NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team – click to enlarge

Two satellites have captured imagery that shows Tropical Storm Debby has thrown a large white blanket of clouds over the state of Florida, and it doesn’t seem like that blanket is going to lift quickly as Debby moves slowly north.

NASA’s Aqua satellite passed over Tropical Storm Debby and the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument onboard the satellite captured a visible image of the storm on Sunday, June 24 at 3:00 p.m. EDT. The image clearly showed Debby’s center over the northeastern Gulf of Mexico, and the bulk of the clouds, showers and thunderstorms wrapping from the north to the east to the south of the center of circulation and covering the entire state of Florida. The northern-most extent of Debby’s clouds were over southern Alabama and south Georgia. Tropical-storm-force winds on June 25 extend outward up to 230 miles (370 km) mostly southeast of the center, and the imagery from MODIS shows that the cloud cover is most extensive in that direction.

On Monday, June 25, 2012 at 11 a.m. EDT, Debby’s maximum sustained winds had dropped to 45 mph (75 kmh). It was located just 75 miles south of Apalachicola, Florida, near 28.6 North and 85.2 West. Debby was crawling to the north at 3 mph (6 kmh). Debby’s minimum central pressure was 995 millibars.

On June 25, 2012 at 11:45 a.m. EDT a visible satellite image of Debby captured by NOAA’s GOES-13 satellite showed that the storm’s clouds continued to blanket all of Florida. The image also showed that the bulk of Debby’s clouds and showers continued to be from northeat to southeast of the center of circulation, which was still in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico. Both the GOES-13 and the MODIS satellite images were created at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) noted that Debby is expected to continue crawling to the northeast or east-northeast over the next couple of days, bringing more soaking rains for the sunshine state. The NHC doesn’t expect much change in intensity, however.

As a result of Debby’s new more northerly track, some of the warnings and watches have been changed as of 11 a.m. on June 25. The tropical storm warning from the Florida-Alabama border to Destin, Fla. has been discontinued. In addition, the tropical storm watch from the Suwannee River to Englewood has been changed to a tropical storm warning. The tropical storm warning area now covers the Florida Gulf Coast from Destin to Englewood.

A quick look at watches and warnings in effect on Monday, June 25 for three western Florida cities tell the story of what Debby is doing to its residents. In Tampa, there is a Tropical Storm Warning, a Coastal Flood Warning, a Tornado Watch, a Flood Warning, a High Surf Advisory and a Flood Watch as a result of Debby. Further north in Pensacola, there is a High Surf Advisory and a Wind Advisory. South of Tampa in Fort Myers,there is a Tornado Watch, Coastal Flood Advisory, High Surf Advisory and Flood Watch.

Tropical-storm-force winds are expected to continue over portions of the Florida Gulf coast today. Heavy rainfall is a key concern today, after Florida was soaked yesterday from Debby. According to the NHC, northern and central Florida can see accumulations of 10 to 20 inches with as much as 25 inches. Southeastern Georgia and extreme South Carolina will also feel Debby’s wet wrath, as totals between 5 and 15 inches are possible in both areas.

This visible image of Tropical Storm Debby was captured by NOAA's GOES-13 satellite on June 25, 2012 at 11:45 a.m. EDT.

This visible image of Tropical Storm Debby was captured by NOAA’s GOES-13 satellite on June 25, 2012 at 11:45 a.m. EDT. The bulk of Debby’s clouds and showers are on its eastern side. Credit: NASA/NOAA GOES Project – click to enlarge

Like a white blanket, Tropical Storm Debby’s clouds covered the entire state of Florida in a NASA satellite image.

Storm surges are expected to range between one and five feet along the Gulf coast between Apalachee Bay to southeastern Louisiana. Isolated tornadoes are also a threat as they are with any landfalling tropical cyclone. Some are possible today across the eastern Florida panhandle, Florida peninsula and southern Georgia.

NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on the Atlantic coast is included in a tornado watch for the area due to a line of thunderstorms approaching from the west. Elevated winds are expected throughout the day and for the next few days. Between one to three inches of rainfal are expected over the next day, and are likely to continue as Debby crawls northward.

Text Credit: Rob Gutro
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.

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Live Tracking map:

Tracking map in high definition (updates every 3-4 hours, click to enlarge)

Track map in HiDef – click to enlarge:

http://www.intelliweather.net/imagery/intelliweather/hurrtrack-sat_atlantic_halfdisk_1280x960.jpg

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29 Responses to Debby, a lot of clouds, wind, rain – but no hurricane

  1. Pingo says:

    Sounds like your average British summer’s day.

  2. Over here in Iraq I had occasion to drop in on CNN’s miserable hype-fest of this soggy cloudburst…Snore……what a delightfully silly misinformation campaign.

  3. pat says:

    Hmmm. A calm Hurricane season. CAGW!

  4. Otter says:

    Odd. For all that extra energy CO2 is adding, the last two hurricanes just don’t sound very…. energetic. Eh, lazyT?

  5. jack morrow says:

    Too bad Texas and Colorado didn’t get Debby.

  6. Nerd says:

    Sad that it didn’t go to Texas as originally predicted. Hot and dry…

  7. MarkW says:

    Moving that slowly, Debbie’s going to take a lot of heat out of the gulf. Which means less energy for later storms.

  8. RobertM says:

    I live in Alaska, but have been on vacation in Tampa for a week. The beaches are closed, the wind has been. Blowing hard for days. Took the kids to see Brave and the power went out. Yuck!

  9. Jason H says:

    The clouds cover ALMOST the whole state. Here in Pensacola at the end of the panhandle, it’s actually been pretty sunny.

  10. eyesonu says:

    Where can I find info on sea surface temps that would show an archive of past temps ranging back a few weeks to present. I want to see the impact of Debby, in this case, on surface temps in gulf. I had a good source last year but lost it when old computer died and took bookmarks with it.

  11. RobertInAz says:

    Any significant impact on the Georgia drought?

  12. RobertInAz says:

    Sadly, not as much as one would hope – here is Accuweather’s take.
    http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/debbys-drought-relief/67022

  13. SteveSadlov says:

    Is that a tropical cyclone or a mid latitude cyclone? On the visible it looks like a mid latitude cyclone with a leading occulded front.

  14. eyesonu says:

    Found one source of sea surface temps in gulf showing current temps here: http://www.ospo.noaa.gov/data/sst/contour/gulfmex.fc.gif

    The primary source for that chart that would likely be updated and used for future reference is here: http://www.ospo.noaa.gov/Products/ocean/sst/contour/index.html

    The site I used last year was possibly a military or Navy site. It was a good one and offered archive to an earlier date. Someone in comments had referenced a link to it. May have been in the discussion of Irene.

  15. eyesonu says:

    I’ve been doing a little comparing of various maps and charts produced by NASA that may be related to Debby. Please reference this one for the following observation and question: http://www.goes.noaa.gov/ECIR4.html

    Is the heat Debby is removing from the waters of the gulf being radiated out to space along the eastern Atlantic being revealed by the above map? If so, it took a long time (days) and distance to reach the locations shown. Are the actions of Debby being shown to have a direct effect as far north as Eastern Canada? I’m just curious and trying to understand something that I don’t.

    It’s not often we get a ‘resident’ tropical storm. Debby could yield a lot to atmospheric research.

  16. rilfeld says:

    My electronic weather instruments, purchase through WWUT and it advertisers and of outstanding quality (shameless plug) show a storm total of 14.2 inches 12 miles south of Tampa. Peak wind gust 56mph. Tides 2.45 feet above tabled high tides, as Tampa Bay is a funnel and the wind piles water up into it. All our shipping channels are dredged, and the largest storm expense may be redredging the sand infill.

  17. eyesonu says:

    I am surprised that I haven’t been called on a mistep in my above post. Technically I should have said “western Atlantic” and not eastern. My mind was focused on the eastern seaboard of the US and primarily Debby. ;-)

  18. Steve R says:

    The NWS now has Debby projected to pass almost directly over my house in north central FL on Thursday. So far about 9″ of well needed rain, hopefully much more to come (I live on a lake with persistently low water levels)
    from eyesonu: http://www.ospo.noaa.gov/data/sst/contour/gulfmex.fc.gif
    Debby is stirring things up directly over my favorite fishing spot-The Florida Middle Grounds.
    http://www.bio.fsu.edu/coleman_lab/florida_middle_grounds.php
    Hopefully I will get out there to investigate as soon as Debby passes.
    Also, look at the water temperature on Florida’s east coast (Altlantic side-not Debby related) There is a strange summer upwelling of cold water that sometimes occurs during the summer months near Daytona, dropping water temperatures at the beach down into the mid 60′s (F) and even colder over the continental shelf. That is the reason for the unusually cold temperatures that figure shows in the Atlantic.

  19. P Walker says:

    Well , from where I sit in SE Georgia , this isn’t quite the snooze fest that some think . We;ve had at least seven inches of rain in the last 48 hours and they’ve had a lot more in North Florida . I-10 is closed between Lake City and Jacksonville due to flooding . Here , just a little north of Jax , low lying areas are under water as are some streets and sidewalks . My pool is filled to the brim and part of my roof is leaking . All in all , not so good , except that the storms this month have ended the drought locally .

  20. eyesonu says:

    Debby is a fascinating event!

    Another good satellite view from NASA with regards to Debby. http://www.nnvl.noaa.gov/satimg/GERVISIR.JPG It seems to show that she’s picking up moisture with the associated heat and it is forming clouds over the Atlantic far away form the source of origin in the gulf as the moisture begins to condense.

    Mods, I’m not trying to ‘thread bomb’, just observing a unique event IMO. There doesn’t seem to be much discussion at this point so other ‘lurkers may find it interesting. All tropical storms have wind and rain and you can get your “fix” with that with TV. The outflow of heat and moisture apparently streaming away from this is what has my attention. It’s fascinating. That is, unless I have “missed the boat”.

    For the sake of research I hope Debby crosses to the Atlantic. She is likely having some effect on the Gulf Stream now and would be interesting to observe.

  21. Steve R says:

    Eyesonu–I’ve seen that before, but mostly with winter storms, feeding GOM moisture up the Atlantic seaboard. Not sure that If I recall a tropical storm at the beginning of the moisture stream. I’m waiting for one of the meteorologists to chime in on it.

  22. eyesonu says:

    Steve R says:
    June 26, 2012 at 9:52 am
    =======================

    Interesting about the Daytona area upwelling of cold water. Looking again at the previously cited web links on surface water temps along the Gulf Stream shown in south Atlantic and north Atlantic charts/maps the clearly defined Gulf Stream ‘warm’ water is missing in the south Atlantic views. WUWT? When I noticed it earlier I thought it may have been an issue with map data or updating. Ohh, the need for archived data and resources for review/research. sigh

    http://www.ospo.noaa.gov/data/sst/contour/satlanti.cf.gif (South Atlantic temp)
    http://www.ospo.noaa.gov/data/sst/contour/natlanti.cf.gif (North Atlantic temp)

  23. Steve R says:

    eyesonu: I don’t really know what causes that cold anomaly on Florida’s NE coast, I’ve heard it has something to do with a certain summertime wind pattern. When it occurs, its can actually be colder water in the surf than the normal wintertime surf temperature. Its not there all summer, it comes and goes. The continental shelf is much wider here than it is further south, and the Gulf Stream is well offshore here.

  24. eyesonu says:

    If that moisture stream originating in the gulf and streaming like an atmospheric river away from Debby could be put in terms as follows it would help show just how much heat is exchanged through evaporation and condensation.

    Consider an atmospheric stream with regards to this starting with Debby as being an actual river in the sky in a real sense and the beginning water temp of the river is the same as the surface of the gulf water. This actual sky river then rains and the actual rain temp would be considered the ending river water temp. If we could get an idea (WAG) as to how much volume was in this river flow and compare that to the beginning and ending river temps it would put in perspective just how much heat energy is transported to the upper atmosphere through the evaporation / condensation process. It could help the layman grasp just how important this is with regards to climate issues. Maybe help some of the ‘climate scientists’ understand too.

  25. Phil. says:

    eyesonu says:
    June 26, 2012 at 8:41 am
    Is the heat Debby is removing from the waters of the gulf being radiated out to space along the eastern Atlantic being revealed by the above map?

    Yes, the cloud images are IR radiation from the tops of the clouds created by the storm viewed from 22,000 miles up.

    Mods, over the last week this site has been crashing Safari on my iPhone can you pass the info along, thanks.

  26. Steve R says:

    Eyesonu- its just the tropics moving heat towards the pole. A big heat engine driven by deltaT.

  27. eyesonu says:

    Steve R says:
    June 26, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    Eyesonu- its just the tropics moving heat towards the pole. A big heat engine driven by deltaT.

    ===================

    I waited this out so as not to appear a thread hog. ;-)

    So the tropics move heat towards the poles. I’ll but that. What about the heat lost in atmospheric transport through high level radiation. Analogy: a train transports water north but a (unknown to me) percentage is lost before it gets there. Question is: what is this amount or percentage? If this were a river of heat/moisture with regards to Debby, would the flow be equal to Niagra Falls or ten times greater.

    I actually was quite serious in an earlier comment wanting to create a relationship to a river in the sky. Just considering Debby, what would be the flow CFM (cubic feet/ min) or CMH (cubic miles/day) with a related temp drop from absorbed/evaporated water temp vs rain temp. Just a WAG from the evaporation thru condensation.

    Picture a river beginning out of the Gulf of Mexico, compliments of Debby. How big would it be?

  28. eyesonu says:

    A couple of typos above: heat/moisture = moisture, CMH = CMD, other not specified. If you cant get the drift then you can’t solve the issue. ;-)

  29. Phil. says:

    eyesonu says:
    June 26, 2012 at 7:16 pm
    Steve R says:
    June 26, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    Eyesonu- its just the tropics moving heat towards the pole. A big heat engine driven by deltaT.

    ===================

    I waited this out so as not to appear a thread hog. ;-)

    So the tropics move heat towards the poles. I’ll but that. What about the heat lost in atmospheric transport through high level radiation. Analogy: a train transports water north but a (unknown to me) percentage is lost before it gets there. Question is: what is this amount or percentage?

    As I said above the cloud tops will be continuously radiating to space, the cloud images for Debby indicate a temperature of about -60ºC (210K) on average so you’d expect radiation at about 110W/m2. I assume that the cloud tops are at about 10km altitude. Hope that helps?

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