I can’t live-blog this, even if we continue to have power up here in the Albany, New York, area during its passage south and west of us, because the “day job” of medical transcription is going to need extra coverage; also I’ve got to get the Civil War anniversary weekly post(s) set up this afternoon.
Still, I just wanted to mention that the process is well underway, per the National Hurricane Center’s 5 a.m. discussion (and probably earlier – that’s the most recent one I’ve read).
Sandy has been under a lot of wind shear for quite some time now. Its central core of circulation has been exposed all that time. As of 5 a.m., per the NHC, it has also entrained a lot of dry air.
These are things that usually murder the heck out of tropical cyclones, even the major hurricanes.
Sandy has strengthened a little bit. It has deep convection going on (all those warm colors in the image). The NHC even says it still has a warm core. Its tropical storm-force wind field has expanded to 450 miles from the center.
This should not be.
In the 5 a.m. discussion, the NHC mentioned why this is happening. Diffluence is happening now, and the upcoming “Godzilla rampage” on the US mid-Atlantic seaboard will be one result of baroclinic forcing. I’m sorry to use terms that I don’t understand at all and can’t link to useful descriptions of, but fluid dynamics are really, really complicated – these links will take you to Wikipedia pages that, if you’re interested and not knowledgeable, can at least get you started.
And now the day job calls. Stay safe, dry and warm!