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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Cleo weakens to a tropical storm

Tropical Cyclone Cleo weakened from a Category 3 cyclone yesterday to a tropical storm tonight. Cleo had intensified to a Category 4 storm on the Saffir Simpson scale by Monday with sustained winds of 115 mph (100 knots) with gusts as high as 138 MPH.

Cleo has been interacting with a low pressure trough which has subjected to storm to increased vertical shear and has started to push the storm in a more southerly direction into cooler waters.

Cyclone Cleo back down to tropical storm status (Physorg.com)

Cleo has run into wind shear and it has weakened it from a cyclone to a tropical storm. Cleo's maximum sustained winds are now down to 69 mph, and expected to continue falling. NASA's TRMM satellite noticed that an opening in the storm's circulation is one of the reasons Cleo has weakened quickly.

--snip--

NASA and the Japanese Space Agency's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission or TRMM satellite flew over Cleo early this morning and confirmed that Cleo's low level circulation center is becoming exposed to the north. Open leads to weakening, and Cleo has weakened more quickly than expected.

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