Cyclone Lua Bearing Down On Australia
Tropical cyclone Lua became cyclone Lua early this morning, and currently has estimated windspeeds of 70 knots. Continued intensification is forecast for Lua, likely to category 2 strength. A ragged eye is observed on microwave images, and this is normal with cyclones of this strength or greater. Wind shear over Lua is in the moderate range of 10-20 knots, and should stay in this range for the next 12-24 hours or so. The satellite presentation has increased in consolidation and organization with the storm, with a large convective band on the northwestern side. Dry air is currently not a problem, as Lua has done a nice job at keeping it at bay on the southwestern quadrant.
RGB satellite image of Cyclone Lua, credit: NOAA
Forecast For Lua
Continued intensification is forecast to a mid-strength category 2 system, before landfall in Australia. Dry air is and will likely not be a problem for the next day or so. Wind shear shouldn't be much of an issue, due to the proximity to an anti-cyclone southeast of Lua. A subtropical ridge is stretched out south of Lua, And this ridge should gradually slide eastwards allowing Lua to move towards northwest Australia at a good pace.
Areas in Australia between Onslow eastwards to Cape Leveque should watch cyclone Lua intently.
Current surface analysis of the Australia region. Credit: Australian Gov. Bureau of Meteorology.
Elsewhere In The Tropics
The GFS and NOGAPS are hinting at a small weak system developing off the east coastline of Queensland, Australia in about 4-5 days. Other then this, these models do not show any development for the next 8 days. The ECMWF does not show any development possible for the next 10 days.
Thats it for today, thanks all for stopping in and I hope you all have a blessed week ahead of you!