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Tropical Cyclone Ului (20P) Expected to Turn West Towards Northeast Coast of Australia

13.9S 153.2E

March 18th, 2010 Category: Tropical Storms

Tropical Cyclone Ului (20P) - March 15th, 2010

Tropical Cyclone Ului (20P) - March 15th, 2010

Enhanced image

Enhanced image

Track of TC 20P - March 17th, 2010 © Univ. of Wisconsin

Track of TC 20P

Tropical Cyclone Ului (20P), located approximately 715 nautical miles east-northeast of Cairns, Australia, has tracked southwestward at 1 knot over the past six hours.  Upon opening the full image, the coast of Queensland can be seen to the South.

Animated multispectral satellite imagery indicates TC Ului has attained a well-defined, symmetric, visible eye over the last 12 hours.

However, a microwave image also depicts waning deep convection throughout the system despite its well-organized structure. Accordingly, Dvorak estimates from have dropped and the system has weakened slightly to 105 knots. Maximum significant wave height is 27 feet.

The system is currently drifting southward (towards a mid-latitude trough-induced weakness in the ridge) in a competing steering environment created by the subtropical ridge to the southwest and the near equatorial ridge to the northeast.

The trough will push downstream within the next 12 to 24 hours, allowing the subtropical ridge to re-establish itself to the south of the TC. This will enable Ului to turn west towards the northeast coast of Australia after TAU 36.

The intensity should hover around 100 knots with environmental conditions remaining fairly constant through the first 72 hours before slowly weakening due to decreasing poleward outflow and less favorable ocean heat content values. The forecast closely follows the model consensus, which has changed little over the last day.

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