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It’s been fairly quiet recently in the Atlantic when it comes to the 2015 Hurricane Season. Only three storms have formed so far this season – Ana, Bill and Claudette (click to view previous storms this season). We haven’t had a named system since the middle of July due to a number of factors including dry air and strong winds aloft. We’re entering the peak of hurricane season in the Atlantic (the historical peak of the season is September 11th), and just on cue the basin appears to be acting up. A tropical wave moved off the coast of Africa over the past few days, and the National Hurricane Center (NHC) is watching this one closely for possible development. The system has been named (for the moment) Invest 96-L, meaning that while it doesn’t have tropical depression characteristics, it is being watch for the potential of forming into a storm over the next few days.
96-L: Formation Chance High
Above is a satellite loop of what 96-L currently look like out in the eastern Atlantic – an area of low pressure with some associated clouds and storms. The NHC, as of 8 AM ET Monday morning, has said that this system has a 50 percent (medium) chance of formation over the next few days. Meanwhile, over the next five days, the system has a high chance of formation – sitting at a 70 percent chance. The reason why the system has such high odds of forming is that it is currently sitting in a position where winds aloft are lower – therefore not tearing the storm apart – and in an area where there is moisture. These environmental conditions are expected to continue over the next several day.
(LATEST TROPICAL MAPS: AerisWeather Tropical Center)
The good news right now is that there is no immediate threat to land from this system, as it is sitting out in the middle of the Atlantic. However, the system is expected to continue to move westward over the next several days, and could approach the Lesser Antilles as we head toward the weekend. Some of the model guidance on this system has it strengthening into a hurricane over the next five days. In the same token, some barely have it at tropical storm strength – so there is still a lot of uncertainty with this system. If it were to form into a tropical storm, its name would be “Danny.”
Whether or not it actually forms into a system, we’ll keep an eye on it here at AerisWeather just in case it has any U.S. impacts down the line.
(CHECK OUT YOUR FORECAST: wx.aerisweather.com)
– Meteorologist D.J. Kayser