You know the weather is quiet when we're tracking wind farms on the Buffalo Ridge on doppler radar.
That's the image this morning from the NWS radar at Sioux Falls. You can see the bright yellow line extending from northwest to southeast near Tyler, Minnesota.
Buffalo Ridge visible as bright yellow band northeast of Sioux Falls radar site this morning.
The radar returns are likely wind generation towers on the ridge, and or the ridge itself. The reason you can see the ridge today is that atmospheric conditions are right for superrefraction or ducting, a bending of the radar beam to follow the earth's curvature.
The bending beam hits the high terrain fo the Buffalo Ridge and bounces back to the radar site. Note how the showers in Iowa are moving, but the Buffalo Ridge returns do not.
Rotating turbines from wind farms can cause issues with severe storm detection. NWS has an outreach program to wind energy producers to work on the best placing for wind farms relative to doppler radar sites.
So far July temperatures are running 5.2 degrees above average in the metro. The coolest day before today was 83 degrees on Sunday. Every other day has been at least 85 degrees, with a 92 degree high on the 3rd. This marks the 5th consecutive month of above average temperatures in the metro.
It's interesting to note that while it's been warmer than average, we've only recorded 4 days at or above 90 degrees. The yearly average for MSP is about 13 days, so we're running a little below average when it comes to extreme heat.
Warmest days of the year:
The average high in the Twin Cities hits 84 degrees tomorrow, and will stay there until July 27th. This time period marks the warmest average high of the year in the Twin Cities and other Minnesota locations. Climatologically speaking, we are now moving into the warmest two to four weeks of the year in Minnesota.
Cool start Monday:
Monday morning's cooler low temperatures were the coolest in nearly two weeks in Minnesota. The Twin Cities bottomed out at 61, with 40s in several northeast Minnesota locations.
The push of cooler air also features much drier air with comfortable dew points in the 40s and 50s. Enjoy the free air conditioning and the respite form the heat and humidity!
Posted at 2:44 PM on July 12, 2010
by Paul Huttner
Filed under: Summer
This is what many of us we wait for all year in Minnesota. Mid-July. Warm days, stinging sun, bathwater lakes, tropical nights and balmy breezes.
In spite of our the coolest day today so far in July, we are now entering the what is climatologically the warmest two week period of the year in Minnesota. On Tuesday, the average high in the Twin Cities hits 84 degrees, and stays there until July 27th.
That's the warmest average high temperature of the year in the Twin Cities. The average overnight low "tops out" at 64 degrees the next two weeks. It's pretty remarkable to think that we deal with sub-zero readings in winter when a cool breeze the rest of this month seems as far away as possible in Minnesota.
Even though the average high drops slightly to 83 degrees by month's end, the next 4 weeks are really the warmest on average in Minnesota.
Lag of the seasons:
Many people ask me why the warmest weather comes as much as a month after the summer solstice, when sun intensity is highest. It's called the seasonal lag.
The best analogy I can think of is your stove. If you turn the burner on high, it's doesn't heat a pot of water to boiling right away. It takes time for the heat energy to work into the system, and begin to boil the water. Our atmosphere works the same way. The incoming solar energy we received over the past month takes time to heat the system. So even though the sunlight is decreasing ever so slightly this time of year, temperatures continue to rise.
Enjoy the best that summer has to offer today, and stay tuned for more tomorrow on a potential severe weather outbreak heading in Wednesday.