Saturday, June 18, 2011

June 18- KSGF Sounding indicative of dangerous atmosphere

I'll just say this right off the bat, this is a very hard map to understand, and I will explain everything that needs to be explained.

This sounding from Springfield, Missouri indicates that the atmosphere is very unstable and dangerous right now.
CAPE levels are above 5000 j/kg. To give you a scope of how dangerously unstable that is, the threshold for severe storms begins at 2000 j/kg of CAPE. So 5000 j/kg could easily produce dangerous thunderstorms.
The lifted index is at -12, which is considered rare for atmospheric conditions. The lower the LI, the more unstable.
The SigSevere parameter, which can indicate if significant severe weather will occur (F2+ tornadoes, very large hail, extreme winds), usually begins at 20,000. Currently, Springfield, MO is reporting a SigSevere amount at 84,000 units.

Luckily, the jet stream at 300 millibars is only at 40 knots, which isn't too impressive, but is still a fair amount. The lower level jet stream is the same speed.
Hodographs (data showing the atmosphere rotating as it moves up in the atmosphere levels) are somewhat interesting at lower levels, suggesting low level rotation may be possible with storms, but upper level rotation is limited and overall not too organized.

Now, the only question is if storms will occur there.
We will see as we go on into the night.

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