Why the Arctic waters are reluctant to freeze

Photograph: Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Why the Arctic waters are reluctant to freeze another slightly less interesting article from The Guardian.

Another mild day in the south


Wow! 16.9°C at Exeter airport. If the sun had come out for any length of time it would have surely made 18°C.


Surely this is Angus?

I know that I’ve been twittering on about when the first named storm will arrive since the start of October, but at last there seems to be some consensus amongst the top three NWP models about the deep depression that’s due to show its hands later this weekend.

  • GFS – Has the would be Angus over north Devon and further east than the other two models at ~ 975 hPa
  • ECMWF – Has the would be Angus in the Celtic Sea and a lot more potent ~ 967 hPa
  • UKMO – Has the would be Angus as a much flabbier affair (and on the strength of this maybe not a named storm) around Dublin ~ 975 hPa.
  • CPTEC* – There are obviously problems with the T+120 frame of this run.


It will interesting to see just who performs best of the three models at T+120 and if this low will get them twitching in Met Éireann and Exeter over the next few days.

* I’m not altogether sure what the CPTEC model is that I download from Wetterzentrale. The best reference I can find to it on the internet, reveals that it’s a Brazilian NWP model from the Centro de Previsão de Tempo e Estudos Climáticos, hence the CPTEC acronym.  That rather grand bit of Portuguese by the way translates to the more mundane ‘Centre for Weather Forecasting and Climate Studies’. Anyway, there model looks way out of step for T+120 when compared to the three big players, namely the GFS, ECMWF and the UKMO.

Super mild

1300 UTC 14 November 2016

Super mild this afternoon at Hawarden in Flintshire, with the 1300 UTC air temperature already at 15.8°C (60.4°F). I should imagine that they’ll be the mildest place today in the UK, all thanks to the mountains of Snowdonia generating a foehn wind in the moderate to fresh south-westerly  flow.


Recent global temperature anomalies

The relative warm temperatures across the pole are well illustrated in this anomaly chart for the week 4 November to 10 November 2016, as is the very cold Scandinavia and NE Russia. Unusually the temperatures across the central Atlantic are well above average despite the SST still being below average.


It’s no wonder that the Arctic sea ice is still tracking -19.5% below average for the 11th of November.


The Antarctic also shows some large positive anomalies in the interior and the Ross Sea for the first 10 days of November. Treat these contours with some caution because I’ve only just started to contour on a spherical projection and as you can see there are certain oddities on the edge of the globe!



Mild in the SW


It’s very mild in the southwest of England at the moment behind the warm front/occlusion/occlusion.


Sharp back edge – but of what?

This is the 0915 UTC visible satellite image for Saturday the 12th of November 2016. It shows quite a dramatic dark shadow cast by the back edge of a weather front that curves down across the UK.

Courtesy of the Met Office

But if you examine the 0000 UTC analysis just what is it the back edge of?

Courtesy of the Met Office

Hopefully when the 0600 UTC analysis arrives it will have removed one or two of these features and drastically simplified it.

*** Updated ***

I couldn’t resist adding a copy of the 06Z analysis to this article. The Met Office Chief forecaster has refused to simplify the analysis in any way at all. I realise that the satellite image I included was from 0915 and later than the 0600 analysis, but I see little evidence of anything other than a warm occlusion that ties in with the cloud structure and rain. I wonder what meteorologists from other Met agencies across Europe think of charts like this?

Courtesy of the Met Office
Courtesy of the Met Office