So far this year, only three tropical systems have developed in the Atlantic Ocean Basin: Tropical Storm Alex, Tropical Storm Bonnie, and Tropical Storm Colin.
While it seems that the Atlantic Hurricane Season has lost steam, bear in mind that we are still several weeks away from the peak of the hurricane season, which occurs in mid-September.
The National Hurricane Center states “the peak of the Atlantic Hurricane Season is September 10, with most activity occurring between mid-August and mid-October.”
According to the National Hurricane Center, the data above is “based on data from the 77-year period from 1944 (the start of the aircraft reconnaissance era) to 2020 but normalized to 100 years.”
In late July through early August, the tropical cyclone points of origin include the areas below (the phrase “tropical cyclone” is the catch all term for tropical depressions, tropical storms and hurricanes).
By early September, the tropical cyclone points of origin include the areas below:
Why is the Atlantic Basin so quiet right now?
Monitoring a few conditions around the globe, one of the reasons why tropical development is not expected in the next few days is due to the Saharan Air Layer, or SAL.
The animation below shows the plume of dust and dry air associated with the Saharan Air Layer flowing over the Atlantic, with the brighter colors signaling the dry, dusty air.
Moisture is necessary for tropical cyclone development, so the SAL literally dries up any chances for tropical convection to organize into a depression or storm.
High pressure is also dominating the island of Bermuda as well as the Gulf of Mexico. Below is expert analysis from the National Hurricane Center.
Tropical Weather Discussion
NWS National Hurricane Center Miami FL
1205 UTC Tue Jul 26 2022
Tropical Weather Discussion for North America, Central America
Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean Sea, northern sections of South
America, and Atlantic Ocean to the African coast from the
Equator to 31N. The following information is based on satellite
imagery, weather observations, radar and meteorological analysis.
Based on 0600 UTC surface analysis and satellite imagery through
A tropical wave has extends its axis along 17W and S of 20N,
moving W at 10-15 kt. Scattered moderate convection is noted in
the vicinity of the wave from 05N to 15N and E of 27W.
An Atlantic tropical wave has its axis along 37W and S of 20N,
moving W at 10-15 kt. No deep convection is associated with this
tropical wave as it is embedded in a dry Saharan airmass.
A western Caribbean tropical wave has its axis along 82W and
south of 21N, moving W near 10-15 kt. Scattered moderate
convection is occurring across the northern portion of the wave
mainly N of 17N affecting western Cuba.
The monsoon trough reaches the Atlantic through the coast of
Mauritania near 19N17W to 08N48W. The ITCZ extends from 08N48W to
coast of Suriname near 06N53W. Scattered showers are noted S of
the boundaries W of 38W.
The eastern end of the East Pacific Monsoon trough enters the SW
Caribbean through the coast of Costa Rica to northern Colombia.
Scattered moderate convection is noted along the boundary, with
stronger activity prevailing over northern Colombia.
...GULF OF MEXICO...
A high pressure regime continues to dominate the Gulf of Mexico,
supporting mainly light to moderate anticyclonic winds. Seas of
1-3 ft prevail in the Gulf, except for 3-4 ft in the SE Gulf,
especially from offshore northern Yucatan to the Florida Straits.
A surface trough currently extends across South Florida
supporting scattered showers across the SE Gulf waters mainly E of
87W. The rest of the basin enjoys fairly tranquil weather
For the forecast, surface ridging prevails across the basin
through the forecast period. The exception will be the Bay of
Campeche, where fresh to strong northeast to east winds will pulse
each night over the next few days due to the typical diurnal
trough that develops over the Yucatan Peninsula and moves
Refer to the section above for details on the tropical wave moving
across the basin.
A surface trough extends across South Florida and interacting
with an upper level trough in the NW Caribbean to produce
scattered showers mainly N of 18N. Elsewhere, the weather
conditions are fairly tranquil. The pressure gradient between the
subtropical ridge near Bermuda and lower pressures in northern
South America result in fresh to strong easterly trade winds in
the central and NE Caribbean, with the strongest winds occurring
offshore southern Hispaniola. Seas in the described waters are 4-7
ft. In the rest of the Caribbean, light to moderate winds and
seas of 2-4 ft prevail.
For the forecast, the pressure gradient in the central Caribbean
will support pulsing fresh to strong east winds today, then
moderate to fresh winds will prevail through the forecast period.
Moderate to fresh winds and gentle to moderate seas are expected
elsewhere through the week.
A surface trough extends along 80W over South Florida. The
interaction of this feature with an upper level trough off E
Florida results in scattered showers and thunderstorms W of 75W.
Fresh to strong easterly winds are noted S of 25N and W of 65W,
with the strongest winds occurring over northern Hispaniola,
including the entrance of the Windward Passages and the SE
Bahamas. Seas in these waters are 5-8 ft. Elsewhere W of 55W,
gentle to locally fresh anticyclonic winds and seas of 3-6 ft
The rest of the tropical Atlantic is dominated by a strong
subtropical ridge near the Azores, maintaining dry weather
conditions. This is accentuated by a dry and dusty Saharan airmass
that is traveling westward across the basin, suppressing the
formation of showers and thunderstorms. Moderate to fresh
easterly winds are noted N of 12N and between 35W and the Lesser
Antilles. Seas in this region are 4-7 ft. Fresh to near gale-
force N-NE winds are occurring N of 22N and E of 28W in the NE
Atlantic due to the pressure gradient between the Azores high and
lower pressures in NW Africa. The strongest winds are found
offshore Morocco and in the water passages in the Canary Islands,
as shown by a recent scatterometer satellite pass. Seas in these
waters are 5-8 ft. Elsewhere, light to moderate winds and seas of
3-6 ft are prevalent.
For the forecast west of 55W, high pressure ridge along 30N will
shift slightly south through Wed, and change little through the
forecast period. Fresh to strong winds will pulse in the late
afternoons and at nights north of Hispaniola and in the approaches
to the Windward Passage through Wed, then again this weekend. A
surface trough that extends across South Florida enhancing
convection/winds/seas mainly W of 75W.
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