Astronomy News

Monster Storm – Irma

There is a monster storm coming into the Caribbean. The last time I used the term “monster storm” was Hurricane Katrina, I try not to use such types of adjectives unnecessarily – this is very serious.

This storm is Irma, and it is bearing down (1) on the Caribbean with incredible winds. Currently the storm has sustained winds of 160 knots / 185 mph! The storm ranks a category 5 on the Saffir-Simpson scale. If you are in the path of Irma do what ever you need to ensure your safety!

The image above is from NOAA‘s GOES East satellite an almost perfectly formed Hurricane on 05 September 2017 at 1145 UTC / 0745 EDT. Credits: NASA/NOAA GOES Project

The US National Hurricane Center is issuing statements about this storm:
The key messages so far:
1. Irma is a potentially catastrophic category 5 hurricane and will
bring life-threatening wind, storm surge, and rainfall hazards to
portions of the northeastern Leeward Islands tonight and tomorrow.
These hazards will spread into the Virgin Islands and Puerto
Rico tomorrow. Preparations should be rushed to completion before
the arrival of tropical-storm force winds tomorrow morning in Virgin
Islands and Puerto Rico.

2. A hurricane warning is in effect for the northern coast of the
Dominican Republic, with hurricane watches for Haiti, the
southeastern Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos. Irma is likely to
bring dangerous wind, storm surge, and rainfall to these areas from
Wednesday night through Friday.

3. Irma could directly affect the remainder of the Bahamas and Cuba
as an extremely dangerous major hurricane later this week. Residents
in these areas should monitor the progress of Irma and listen to
advice given by officials.

4. The chance of direct impacts from Irma beginning later this week
and this weekend from wind, storm surge, and rainfall continues to
increase in the Florida Keys and portions of the Florida Peninsula.
However, it is too soon to specify the timing and magnitude of these
impacts.

FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INIT 05/2100Z 17.1N 59.8W 160 KT 185 MPH
12H 06/0600Z 17.6N 61.8W 155 KT 180 MPH
24H 06/1800Z 18.5N 64.6W 150 KT 175 MPH
36H 07/0600Z 19.5N 67.3W 145 KT 165 MPH
48H 07/1800Z 20.4N 70.1W 140 KT 160 MPH
72H 08/1800Z 21.6N 75.3W 135 KT 155 MPH
96H 09/1800Z 22.7N 79.3W 125 KT 145 MPH
120H 10/1800Z 24.4N 81.5W 120 KT 140 MPH

1. The use of “bearing down” in this context is apparently the correct spelling (ref. It just seems wrong somehow to me)