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Sediment Plume from De Grey River, Australia

20.3S 118.5E

March 17th, 2013 Category: Rivers, Sediments

Australia – March 5th, 2013

The De Grey River is a river located in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. It rises south of Callawa at the confluence of the Oakover and the Nullagine rivers and flows in a west-north-westerly direction eventually discharging into the Indian Ocean via Breaker Inlet about 80 km north-east of Port Hedland.

Its stream bed is 100 to 130 metres wide, dry throughout most of the year. Here, however, due to rainfall associated with Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S), much water was present in the river, carrying with it great loads of sediment. Here, that sediment can be seen emptying into the Indian Ocean and creating a greenish blue plume that extends far offshore.

Sediments by De Grey River Mouth and Along Eighty Mile Beach, Australia – March 12th, 2013

19.6S 121.0E

March 12th, 2013 Category: Image of the day, Rivers, Sediments

Australia – March 4th, 2013

Heavy rainfall associated with the presence of Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S), which made landfall in northwestern Australia in late February 2013 caused rivers to flood and release heavy sediment loads into the Indian Ocean. Here, rusty red sediments can be seen spilling from the mouth of the De Grey River and into Breaker Inlet (lower left). A whitish band of sediment can also be seen framing the coastline along Eighty Mile Beach, which forms the coastline where the Great Sandy Desert approaches the Indian Ocean.  The beach lies about halfway between the towns of Broome and Port Hedland, where the cyclone made landfall.

Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S) Stationary Over Past Six Hours

17.9S 116.7E

February 26th, 2013 Category: Tropical Cyclones

Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S) – February 26th, 2013

Enhanced image

Track of Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S) - February 26th, 2013 © Univ. of Wisconsin

Track of TC 17S

Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S), located approximately 70 nm north- northeast of Port Hedland, Australia, has been stationary over the past six hours. Maximum significant wave height is 21 feet.

Animated enhanced infrared satellite imagery shows a recent increase in deep convection within the eyewall structure. The low level circulation center (LLCC) has slowed over the past 12 hours and for the past six hours has been completely stationary.

Sea surface temperatures near the coast are very favorable (32 degrees Celsius) and have been enhancing the system’s intensity, which is currently at 95 knots. The current intensity is based on Dvorak estimates from PGTW, KNES and APRF ranging from 90 to 105 knots.

Upper level analysis indicates radial outflow continues to support the intensification, with a mid-latitude trough south of the LLCC providing additional support to the southeastern outflow channel. The trough appears to be weakening the western extent of a subtropical high (STH) located over Central Australia, which has been the primary steering influence.

As the trough continues to track eastward, the STH should re-engage causing the system to track southward into southwestern Australia. Intensity should persist over the next 12 hours until TC 17S makes landfall around TAU 24. Beyond TAU 36 increasing land interaction and vertical wind shear will quickly lead to dissipation of Rusty as a tropical cyclone. Model guidance is in good agreement with the forecast track and weakening scenario once the system makes landfall. Based on the good agreement in model guidance, there is high confidence in the forecast track.

Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S) Near Coast of Western Australia – February 24th, 2013

18.6S 116.0E

February 24th, 2013 Category: Image of the day, Tropical Cyclones

Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S) – February 25th, 2013

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Track of Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S) - February 25th, 2013 © Univ. of Wisconsin

Track of TC 17S

Tropical Cyclone Rusty (17S), located approximately 160 nm north of Port Hedland, Australia, has tracked south-southwestward at 03 knots over the past six hours.

Animated infrared (IR) satellite imagery depicts a rapidly consolidating system with a 20-nm eye. An AMSU image and Port Hedland radar depict an intense spiral band extending from Broome westward over Port Hedland then wrapping into the western quadrant of the system.

Surface observations along the northwest coast of Australia indicate persistent gale-force winds associated with this spiral band. Based on the eye fixes, there is high confidence in the initial position. The initial intensity is assessed at 60 knots, higher than the Dvorak intensity estimates of 55 knots, based on the impressive structure evident in satellite, microwave and radar imagery.

Tropical Cyclone Lua (17S) Set to Make Landfall Over Australia – March 17th, 2012

18.6S 114.6E

March 17th, 2012 Category: Image of the day, Tropical Cyclones

Tropical Storm Lua (17S) - March 16th, 2012

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Track of TS 17S - March 16th, 2012 © Univ. of Wisconsin

Track of TS 17S

Tropical Cyclone Lua (17S), located approximately 150 nm north of Port Hedland, Australia, has tracked southeastward at 13 knots over the past six hours. Port Hedland radar imagery indicates the LLCC passed over Rowley Shoals at approximately 01:00am local time.

Animated infrared satellite imagery indicates that the system has increased its horizontal extent while maintaining tightly-curved bands wrapping into a well-defined low-level circulation center (LLCC). Recent microwave satellite imagery reveals the deepest convection is location along the western semi-circle of the LLCC, which is due to light to moderate (10-20 knots) easterly vertical wind shear. The current intensity is assessed at 90 knots. Maximum significant wave height is 32 feet. Sustained 10-minute winds were reported at 73 knots.

TC 17S is forecast to continue tracking southeastward, making landfall east of Port Hedland in approximately 12 hours. The system is forecast to reach a peak intensity of 95 knots prior to landfall and then rapidly weaken with dissipation over land forecast by TAU 36.

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