September 15: Heat, Weekend Rain, Daily Links


Another hot couple of days ahead of us, before some relief heads our way in time for the weekend — unfortunately, that relief will be in the form of higher rain chances that could mess with your outdoor plans this weekend.

High temperatures today will reach the low 90s, with partly cloudy skies overhead:
The humidity shouldn’t be quite as bad by this afternoon, but it will still be noticeable.  Dew points will be in the low to mid 60s, rather than the upper 60s:
thursday-dew-point MuggyMeter
The heat index will be just a couple of degrees hotter than the air temperature:
Just the slightest chance of a storm this afternoon — the HRRR model’s radar simulation is mostly blank, and the other short-range models are in agreement with that scenario:

Still hot Friday, high temperatures once again in the low 90s:
We’ll see a slightly better chance of storms Friday afternoon, but just in the 20% range.  The RPM model’s radar simulation shows that pattern:
rpm-2p-fri rpm-4p-fri rpm-6p-fri

The weekend is still looking “unsettled” — scattered showers and thunderstorms will drop temperatures out of the 90s, but you’ll have to contend with some wet weather for at least part of the weekend.  The timing and placement of the best rain chances is coming into better focus, arriving Saturday and lingering into Sunday — expect an earlier arrival (and departure) to the NW of Nashville, a later arrival (and departure) to the SE.  Here’s a preliminary look at the RPM model in that time frame:
rpm-6a-sat rpm-9a-sat rpm-12p-sat rpm-3p-sat rpm-6p-sat rpm-9p-sat rpm-12a-sun rpm-3a-sun
Stay tuned for changes, because the forecast is far from “locked in” — the system causing the unsettled weather will not be very organized, which leads to the greater level of uncertainty.  If you have outdoor plans for the weekend, do what I’m doing — don’t cancel anything, but have a solid Plan B in mind in case it rains.

The more-reliable model guidance points to a drier pattern Monday, with rain-free weather Tuesday and Wednesday.  It’s still going to be hot, but at least the humidity will be lower, which allows temperatures to cool off to a greater extent overnight:



Weather, space, and other science nerdiness…

  • As I type this, there’s still been no word from the island of Itbayat, just south of Taiwan.  The small island (home to 3000 people) took a direct hit from a super typhoon on Tuesday, with wind gusts over 200 mph.
  • Those scientists trapped by polar bears at a weather station in Russia?  They’ve been rescued.
  • Tomorrow, Earth’s shadow will darken the moon in an ethereal event known as a penumbral eclipse — but we won’t be able to see much of it here.
  • The large reddish spot on Pluto’s moon Charon (spotted by the New Horizons probe last year) appears to be “painted” there by escaping methane from Pluto’s atmosphere.
  • That finding means that Pluto has a tail, much like a comet.
  • The Voyager spacecraft (launched in 1977) are still sending back data from interstellar space, but those spacecraft will lose power in the next 15 years.
  • A new map of the Milky Way was released yesterday — it’s the most-detailed such map ever, and pinpoints the location of 1.1 billion stars.
  • Why women are more likely than men to experience sleep problems.
  • So, should you download iOS 10 or not?
  • Science Debate asked the top 4 presidential candidates 20 science and technology questions.  Gary Johnson has yet to respond, but here are the answers from the other 3.

About paulheggen33

Morning meteorologist for WNCN-TV in Raleigh.
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