Then We Await Irene, Likely Being Born By Late Sunday
A tropical wave south of Jamaica is looking much better organized this evening than it has in the past two days and a last glimpse at the system with visible satellite imagery shows shows pulsing up from the north to the east and to the south of what appears to be a central circulation trying to form. A hurricane hunter investigated the wave earlier this afternoon and had not yet found a closed circulation but I do believe that will change by the morning recon mission.
Conditions in the advance of the wave are favorable for development and it is likely this wave will organize fairly quickly. The one thing it has going against it is its forward speed of 15 to 20 mph to the west. It is only about 500 miles to the west of the Honduran coast and that would but landfall late Thursday into Friday. Because of this short period of time, I don't believe the wave would become the season's first hurricane but I do feel pretty comfortable that this will become at minimum a depression but likely briefly a tropical storm and become Harvey.
Also watching a wave now about 800 miles west of the Cape Verde Islands drifting to the west. Conditions just in its advance are not conducive to rapid development and so I don't anticipate much change in the wave for the remainder of the work week. However, as the wave moves into the Leeward Islands the modeling data indicates conditions will become much more favorable and development is expected over the weekend. Depending on how much interaction the wave ends up having with the islands of Puerto Rico and Hispaniola late this weekend/early next week will determine on whether it could become the season's first hurricane. I do believe this wave has the best chance we have see this year of reaching hurricane status by early next week.