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Hurricane WILMA


ZCZC MIATCDAT4 ALL
TTAA00 KNHC DDHHMM
HURRICANE WILMA DISCUSSION NUMBER  13
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
5 PM EDT TUE OCT 18 2005
 
AN AIR FORCE RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT HAS JUST MADE ITS FIRST PASS
THROUGH THE CENTER OF WILMA...FINDING A MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE OF
970 MB AND MAXIMUM FLIGHT-LEVEL WINDS...SO FAR...OF 75 KT.  A
DROPSONDE IN THE NORTH EYEWALL REPORTED SURFACE WINDS OF 64 KT. 
SATELLITE INTENSITY ESTIMATES FROM TAFB AND SAB ARE 77 KT.  THE
ADVISORY INTENSITY OF 70 KT IS A BLEND OF THE SATELLITE AND
RECONNAISSANCE OBSERVATIONS.  

THERE HAS BEEN NO CHANGE TO THE THINKING REGARDING THE INTENSITY
FORECAST. WILMA CONTINUES TO HAVE VERY STRONG UPPER-LEVEL OUTFLOW
CHANNELS TO THE NORTHEAST AND SOUTHWEST OF THE CENTER. OCEANIC HEAT
CONTENT AHEAD OF WILMA IS HIGH...INCLUDING IN THE SOUTHEASTERN GULF
OF MEXICO.  IN THE SHORT TERM...THE ONLY INHIBITING FACTOR IS THE
DRY AIR MASS IN THE GULF AND EXTREME NORTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN. A HIGH
LIKELIHOOD OF RAPID STRENGTHENING CONTINUES TO BE INDICATED BY THE
SHIPS RAPID INTENSIFICATION INDEX. WILMA COULD BE A MAJOR HURRICANE
BY THIS TIME TOMORROW...AND REACH CATEGORY FOUR STRENGTH BEFORE
ENTERING THE SOUTHEASTERN GULF OF MEXICO. AS WILMA ACCELERATES
NORTHEASTWARD IN THE GULF...WIND SHEAR IS FORECAST TO INCREASE
SLIGHTLY...BUT AT THIS TIME DOES NOT APPEAR TO BE SUFFICIENT TO
WEAKEN WILMA VERY QUICKLY. HOWEVER...IT IS WORTH REMEMBERING THAT
THERE IS LITTLE SKILL IN LONG-RANGE INTENSITY FORECASTS.
 
THE INITIAL MOTION IS 290/7. THERE HAS ALSO BEEN NO CHANGE TO THE
TRACK FORECAST THINKING.  THE MID- TO UPPER-LEVEL LOW THAT HAD BEEN
OFF THE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA COAST CONTINUES NORTHEASTWARD...AND AS
IT PROGRESSES HIGH PRESSURE OVER THE GULF OF MEXICO IS EXPECTED TO
WEAKEN...ALLOWING WILMA TO MOVE THROUGH THE NORTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN
AND ENTER THE SOUTHEASTERN GULF OF MEXICO IN ABOUT THREE DAYS. ONCE
WILMA MOVES NORTH OF THE SUBTROPICAL RIDGE AXIS AND ENCOUNTERS
MID-LEVEL WESTERLY FLOW...AN ACCELERATION NORTHEASTWARD IS
EXPECTED.  ONLY VERY MODEST SHIFTS HAVE OCCURRED WITH THE
TIGHTLY-CLUSTERED MODEL GUIDANCE SUITE...WHICH...AT THIS TIME...IS
FOCUSING THE LONG-TERM THREAT TO THE SOUTHERN HALF OF THE FLORIDA
PENINSULA.  THE OFFICIAL FORECAST IS VERY SIMILAR TO THE PREVIOUS
ADVISORY AND REMAINS CLOSE TO THE DYNAMICAL MODEL CONSENSUS.
 
 
FORECASTER FRANKLIN
 
 
FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS
 
INITIAL      18/2100Z 16.7N  81.5W    70 KT
 12HR VT     19/0600Z 17.3N  82.3W    90 KT
 24HR VT     19/1800Z 18.2N  83.5W   100 KT
 36HR VT     20/0600Z 19.1N  84.5W   110 KT
 48HR VT     20/1800Z 20.2N  85.2W   115 KT
 72HR VT     21/1800Z 22.5N  85.5W   110 KT
 96HR VT     22/1800Z 25.0N  82.5W   100 KT
120HR VT     23/1800Z 30.5N  75.5W    70 KT
 
 
$$
NNNN


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Page last modified: Tuesday, 18-Oct-2005 20:55:12 UTC