Hurricane Neki hits 120 mph / 960 mb – likely maxed out west of Hawaii 10.22.09





NASA’s MODIS Imaging of Hurricane Neki’s eyewall

With winds of 120 mph, Hurricane Neki has likely reached its peak with cooler sea surface temperatures and increasing wind shear in the forecast in the coming days.

While sea surface temperature drops of 1-2 C are fairly modest, deep layer wind shear approaching 20kt should begin a fairly steady weakening phase to Neki just as the storm edges to the west of Niihau and Kauai.

Tropical storm warnings are up on the outer waters near the Hawaiian Islands for swells approaching 9-12 ft west of 162W.

Hurricane Neki:

Sustained Winds: 120 mph

Moving: N 12 mph

Estimated Central Pressure: 960 mb

Wind field projection for Neki moving just west of the Hawaiian Islands

Deep layer convection still looks robust in nearly all quadrants, however as wind shear increases Neki’s ability to retain outflow and eyewall structure looks compromised.

The current Central Pacific Hurricane Center forecast keeps the storm west Nihoa (well west of Niihau and Kauai) and directly across the French Frigate Shoals early Friday.

Neki should begin weakening to a tropical storm and eventually depression over the weekend near 30N, 155W.

For More Information:

NASA MODIS Imagery: Hurricane Neki

Central Pacific Hurricane Center

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