Weather

Weather updates for Fairfield County Connecticut

“Bombogenesis” imminent in New England blizzard

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The blizzard has begun.

Most airlines have canceled flights into Boston, New York and other northeastern United States cities. Trucks are rolling over on freeways. It’s begun snowing throughout Manhattan.

Harlem at 1:30 p.m. CT. (Erik Pindrock, Twitter)

And in the parlance of Boston forecasters, bombogenesis is imminent. Look that one up, non-weather nerds. It’s a real word.

Let’s start with the big picture. Earlier today NASA released a satellite image showing how two low-pressure systems were coming together to form this powerful Nor’easter.

How the massive winter storm is coming together. (NASA)

In this image there are two distinct storms, a western frontal system stretching across the United States and a coastal low pressure system.

The two systems can also be seen in the infrared satellite image below, upon which the fronts have been superimposed. Note the frontal system is generally linear and moving east-southeast, while the coastal low is a more of a cyclonic feature, rotating about a point of the Maryland coast.

Infrared satellite with surface observations and fronts superimposed. (NOAA HPC)

To see both of these systems in motion, check out this really cool loop of visible satellite images.

What’s now happening is that the coastal low is swallowing the frontal system and becoming a still more powerful storm. And it’s going to move northward, up the New England coast.

A foot of snow is possible in New York City, and much more — in excess of 2 feet — is likely in Connecticut and Massachusetts. The map below shows the probability of at least 1 foot of snowfall according to the Boston office of the National Weather Service.

Probability of at least 1 foot of snow. (National Weather Service)

As you can see the probability in Boston is 100 percent. Yep, that’s a big storm. It’s going to be a long, cold night up there.

Be safe, y’all.

Categories: General
Eric Berger

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