A new tropical storm is developing in the far east Atlantic and forecast to become a hurricane this weekend.
The National Hurricane Center began advisories on Potential Tropical Cyclone Six Thursday morning, stating that the system lacked a well-defined center but was likely to strengthen over the next 24 hours. A Tropical Storm Warning was issued by the government of the Cabo Verde Islands for Santiago, Fogo and Brava.
Chances are high that Potential Tropical Cyclone Six will strengthen in the next few days, and it could become a hurricane by Sunday as it moves west-northwest into the central Atlantic. Once it acquires tropical storm characteristics, it would be named Florence. Long range forecast data then suggests the storm will turn to the northwest and likely not affect any more land areas.
Tropical Storm Florence will likely be the first of several systems that have the potential to develop over the next couple of weeks in the eastern Atlantic. Much of that area has been void of activity in recent weeks due to a combination of unfavorable factors, some of which are normal in August. Dry air, Saharan dust, cool ocean temperatures and strong winds aloft have all prevented activity from developing.
While water temperatures have recently become more conducive for tropical cyclone formation, the fate of any storm that might traverse the entire ocean will be subject to other factors such as wind shear and moisture. At the present time, there are no immediate threats from the tropical Atlantic to North American or Florida.
The traditional peak of activity during the Atlantic Hurricane Season is the second week of September, but the season doesn't officially end until November 30.