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What is known about the possible hurricane that could reach Spain next week

The National Hurricane Centeran American weather service, continues to monitor the evolution of tropical storm Danielle. It started to form west of the Azores islands on Wednesday, and at the moment it looks set to intensify into a very high latitude, making it an extremely anomalous phenomenon. Its location is also strange, since is located “further north than usual”near latitude 38.1 north, longitude 44.5 west.

What is a hurricane?

As reported weathereda hurricane is a thermal machine formed and maintained by the contribution of heat energy constant supplied by very humid air. This is found on the water of tropical seas, and its warmth favors the formation of the meteorological phenomenon. Storm clouds, known as cumulonimbussurround the eye of the hurricane whose mean diameter is usually among 300 and 800 kilometers.

Still, right now Danielle is classified as a cyclone or tropical storm. This is how storm systems with low pressure areas are known, plagued by cumulonimbus clouds that form a heavy rain spiral, strong winds and in some cases tornadoes. To achieve tropical storm status, a cyclone must have a warm core and a maximum sustained surface wind between 63 and 117 km/h. From then on they would be considered hurricanesin case it happened in the Atlantic and Eastern Pacific either typhoonsif it happened in the western pacific.

Could Danielle transform as she approaches Spain?

Juan Jesus Gonzalez AlemanPh.D. in Physics and senior meteorologist of the State, pointed out through social networks the possibility that generate an extratropical transition. When tropical cyclones reach mid latitudesthese can undergo a phenomenon known as extratropical transition, which can lead to turn into a strong storm. One of the clearest examples was Hurricane Ophelia that hit Ireland in 2017.

The Meteorology Statal Agency (Aemet) explains, through its website, that for this to happen, they must comply with at least one of the following characteristics:

  • The tropical cyclone has moved into cooler waters, when the sea surface temperature is below 26 degrees Celsius.
  • When combined it interacts with a frontal or baroclinic zone.
  • In case it interacts with an extratropical system.
  • when moving over land.
  • When all these elements combine.

How did Tropical Storm Danielle form?

The main hypothesis is that a marine heat wavewhich affects the North Atlantic area where Danielle has been generated, could be behind the tropical cyclone.

After a few months of significant heat waves, the climate change seems to be the culprit instability weather that hits the country. petteri taalassecretary general of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), pointed to global warming as main culprit of these strong periods of heat. It assures that they will continue until 2060, which will make “these types of heat waves normal” and even more extreme.

For its part, from the environmental association greenpeace claims that “there is a relationship between global warming and the intensity and behavior of the hurricanes“. Specifically, they explain that climate change changes the frequency, recurrence and intensity of their patterns. The increase in the temperature of the ocean water where hurricanes form favors the intensity of storms, causing more acute phenomena. It is important to note that continue to study the relationship between climate change and tropical systems.

How likely is it to reach Spain?

There are several sources with meteorological knowledge that have highlighted a Low probability of this happening. Aemet has assured that Danielle “it is far” from Spain for the moment, for what they consider “very improbable notice its effect on the peninsula. Alemán, he has gone to his social networks to reassure the population, coinciding with the agency.

Specifically, the spokesman for Aemet, Ruben del Camponoted Thursday that the possibility of the tropical system generating “very strong gusts of wind” is below 10 percent. In the event that it did happen, he points out that it would only be notable in “the extreme north of the peninsula”.

Despite this, the most used word among meteorologists is “uncertainty“. They insist that the key lies in waiting and observing their route. For example, Mario Picazo assures that the behaviour of Danielle will be “erratic“, waiting for” its possible trajectory to the northeast to be unlocked.

What could be its exact trajectory?

The high complexity of the phenomenon prevents making a trajectory model accurate. All the forecasts that are made now have a cone of uncertainty of about 5 days, as is the case with the calculation created by the National Hurricane Center.

Information will be more accurate the closer you get Danielle, so we could know more data starting next week. Still, should it evolve into a hurricane, these predictions could change quickly due to its meteorological instability.

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