The National Hurricane Center is forecasting an increased likelihood that a tropical depression or storm could form in the Atlantic and potentially threaten Florida in the next five days.
Following the NHC’s Tropical Outlook at 8:00 a.m., meteorologists are forecasting that a large nontropical depression will develop over the northeastern Caribbean Sea and southwestern Atlantic Ocean near Puerto Rico this weekend.
“The system is initially expected to be very broad and disorganized, but it could start to take on subtropical or tropical characteristics by the end of the weekend,” forecasters said. “Environmental conditions could support additional gradual development early next week and a subtropical or tropical depression could form as the disturbance moves generally northwest or west across the southwest Atlantic.”
Chances for formation increased to 40% on Friday for it to form in the next five days.
Mark Burger, launch officer for Space Launch Delta 45’s weather squadron, said Thursday he’s also keeping an eye on the system as it poses a potential threat to NASA’s Artemis I mission and its $4.1 billion worth of hardware , which is located on Launch Pad 39 at Kennedy Space Center. B is waiting for a launch attempt in mid-November.
“There’s still a lot of disagreement over exactly where this might end up and whether or not it would even take on significant tropical characteristics to even become a named storm.” That’s all very much in the game at this point,” he said. “Nevertheless, the models are very consistently geared towards developing some sort of gravure, and whether it’s named or not, that’s pretty much what we’re aiming for by the middle of next week, particularly as we go Monday night, possibly Tuesday night, early Wednesday, and we’re having the strongest impact from this particular system as it nears the Florida Peninsula.
He said it looks like it could bring sustained winds of 25-30mph with gusts approaching 45mph at worst.
“These were well within our riding limits so we’re going to have an impact from that in terms of wind, but again we don’t see any likelihood of a strong system coming out of that at this point,” he said. “Again, we will continue to monitor this for any implications mid-next week.”
If it gains strength, it could become Tropical Storm Nicole.
The NHC also continues to issue advisories on the Lisa tropical depression in the Gulf of Mexico, while also monitoring a weak nontropical depression located several hundred miles east-southeast of Bermuda that has only a 10 percent chance of entering a named system in the next few days In the Atlantic.
At 11:00 a.m., TD Lisa was approximately 185 miles west of Ciudad del Carmen, Mexico in Campeche Bay with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph moving northwest at 7 mph.
“A gradual turn north at a slower forward speed is expected through Saturday morning. Lisa or her remains are then expected to remain stationary for the remainder of the weekend, moving very little,” forecasters said. “A slight refreshment is possible today. Lisa is expected to weaken into Saturday morning and likely become a post-tropical holdover low by Saturday night.”
The sixth and seventh hurricanes of the season formed this week, with Hurricane Lisa hitting Belize on Thursday morning and Hurricane Martin turning extratropical in the North Atlantic on Thursday afternoon.
The Atlantic hurricane season lasts until November 30th. Martin’s 14 named systems of the season have now met NOAA’s 2022 guidance.
NOAA has predicted an above-average season of 14 to 21 named tropical storms. This follows a record 30 named systems in 2020 and 21 named storms in 2021.