I just spotted what appears to be a massive cyclone — bigger than all of Greenland — in today’s daily Arctic mosaic from NASA’s Terra satellite.
Look for the thing that looks like a giant, white, upside down comma in the image above. (And click on the picture for a larger version.)
I’ve dug around a bit and found this Tweet about it from Ryan Maue, a research meteorologist with WeatherBell:
48-hour forecast animation of powerful Arctic storm from Canadian Regional Model (2-meter dewpoint) –> http://t.co/8b5LUe9Xfi
— Ryan Maue (@RyanMaue) August 7, 2013
Make sure to click on the link he provided to see a spectacular animation of the model’s forecast for the storm.
And if you have information to share about it, please make sure to leave it in the comments section along with a source.
Just two weeks ago there were reports of a swirling summer storm in the Arctic. And one year ago exactly to the day, an unusually large and powerful cyclone churned over the Arctic Ocean.
Arctic cyclones are actually more common in summer than winter, but they are generally weaker. The August 2012 cyclone featured a particularly low central sea level pressure, according to NASA’s Earth Observatory. (The EO post also has some interesting details about the role climate change may be playing in an observed increase in the number and intensity of summer cyclones.)
The 2012 storm helped to reduce the extent of Arctic sea ice, but it was not responsible for the record low recorded that year. We’ll see what the current storm does. Right now, Arctic sea ice extent is considerably lower than the long-term average, but not as low as it was last year at this time. (See the Arctic Sea Ice News and Analysis page from the National Snow and Ice Data Center for the latest update.)