The National Hurricane Center (NHC) has requested the NOAA P-3 aircraft to investigate recently declared Tropical Depression 28 in the Caribbean Sea. Flights began Saturday October 25 at noon EDT with follow on flights repeating every 12 hours through Tuesday morning.
AOML scientists are processing Tail Doppler Radar (TDR) data for forecasters and weather models. No dropsondes are being released for the initial flight because the aircraft will be flying at a low altitude (below 5000 feet). Weak systems, like tropical depressions, tend to have shallow circulations that do not extend up high into the atmosphere. A storm circulation grows higher as it strengthens and consequently the aircraft fly higher. At this time, the aircraft also begin to release dropsondes.
NHC has requested the Gulfstream-IV, a high altitude jet, to begin flights into the environment around Tropical Depression 28 on Sunday, October 25. All flights will be based out of Lakeland with local take off times at 1:30 PM followed by 1:30 AM EDT.
According to NHC forecaster Eric Blake the low- and mid-level circulations of the depression are not well-aligned which inhibits strengthening of the system. NHC forecasts slow strengthening as Tropical Depression 28 makes it way northwest over the next few days.
>> Scientist L. Bucci
>> Edits by R. Kravetz
For details about reconnaissance aircraft missions, please see NOAA’s official Plan of the Day.
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