SPC 1300Z Day 1 Outlook

Day 1 Outlook Image

Day 1 Convective Outlook  
NWS Storm Prediction Center Norman OK
0657 AM CST Sun Nov 29 2020

Valid 291300Z - 301200Z


Thunderstorms may produce a few tornadoes and areas of strong-severe
gusts today and tonight, from parts of the central Gulf Coast to the
eastern Carolinas.

An initially split-flow pattern across the central CONUS will become
dominated by a northern-stream trough, now evident in moisture-
channel imagery from northwestern ON across the Dakotas to eastern
WY.  This trough will remain positively tilted, but also will
strengthen, as it moves southeastward across the mid/upper
Mississippi Valley and central Plains through tonight.  By 12Z
tomorrow, the 500-mb trough should extend near an axis from MQT-MSN-
STL-TXK-DAL.  In response to these developments, the compact mid/
upper cyclone now centered over southwestern OK will move eastward
to southwestern AR by 00Z, by when it should be devolving to an
open-wave trough.  This perturbation will deamplify considerably
tonight, as it ejects across the Tennessee Valley region to the
south-central Appalachians. 

At the surface, a frontal-wave low analyzed at 11Z over the Gulf
southeast of GLS and S of the BPT area, which should deepen
substantially today and tonight as it moves northeastward and
inland.  The low should cross southern portions of LA/MS today, to a
00Z position over southwestern AL, continuing to deepen and move
northeastward overnight to a 12Z position near TRI.  The trailing
cold front should reach the MOB/PNS area by 00Z, then by 12Z, extend
from the low across the western Carolinas, eastern GA, the FL
coastal bend, and the eastern to south-central Gulf.

East of the low, a warm to quasistationary front was analyzed just
south of the LA coastline and eastward over the northeastern Gulf,
across the northern FL Peninsula, through a weak low north-northeast
of XMR, then northeastward offshore from GA/SC.  This boundary will
shift inland over southeastern LA and southern MS this morning, and
irregularly northward farther east through the period.  Its
definition and baroclinicity over parts of AL/GA/SC/NC may be
muddled on the mesoscale by areas of precip/outflow.  By 00Z, the
synoptic warm front generally should extend across southern portions
of AL/GA to near coastal parts of SC and southeastern NC.  By 12Z,
the warm front may reach southern parts of the Chesapeake Bay/
Delmarva area, but still with areas of precip likely on both sides
to disrupt the surface theta-e/instability fields.

...Gulf Coast to southern GA...
Scattered to locally numerous thunderstorms should develop this
afternoon and evening from near the low southward along and just
ahead of the cold front, and eastward along and north of the warm
front.  Given the likely weak MLCINH amidst strengthening large-
scale lift, discrete to clustered warm-sector convection also may
form by this evening over the Gulf and move ashore across the FL
Panhandle.  A few tornadoes and sporadic damaging to severe gusts
appear to be the main concerns. 

As the mid/upper low/troughs approach the Southeast, and the
synoptic-scale height gradient intensifies over the region, flow
will increase throughout the troposphere above the surface (e.g.,
through the 850-250-mb layer).  This will spread strong deep shear
and growing hodographs across an incompletely (yet in some places
sufficiently) modified Gulf return-flow air mass.  Much uncertainty
remains about how far north/inland the favorable surface-based
buoyancy will extend, given 
1.  The warm front may not be sharply defined inland, especially
with areas of precip and convection on both sides, 
2.  Extensive clouds and scattered areas of inland precip will mute
diurnal/diabatic heating and keep low-level lapse rates modest, and
3.  Areas of convection remain possible over parts of the Gulf,
potentially restricting advectively driven inland destabilization in
some areas. 

Still, given the strength of the low-level and deep shear forecast,
it appears prudent to maintain a northward-gradating slope of
"slight" to "marginal" levels of unconditional wind and tornado
probabilities, with highly variable threat levels possible on the
mesoscale.  The regime should shift eastward across the outlook
area, reaching GA tonight and northwestern FL the last few hours of
the period.  However, veering surface flow ahead of the front over
FL may begin to limit convergence and low-level shear before the
convective band arrives.

...Eastern Carolinas/VA Tidewater...
Convective coverage should increase from early this evening onward,
in a northward-expanding regime of scattered thunderstorms.  This
process will be related to strengthening low-level moisture and
large-scale ascent ahead of the low-level cyclone and mid/upper
troughs, amidst weak CINH.  Along and south of the warm front, some
of this activity will become rooted in the boundary layer, offering
a damaging-wind and tornado threat. 

As with the Gulf Coast regime, a good deal of uncertainty remains on
the inland extent of favorable destabilization along and south of
the warm front, as the deepening surface cyclone shifts up the
Appalachians to the west.  The associated isallobaric response will
result in strengthening low-level shear, enlarging hodographs and
increasing SRH as the LLJ increases tonight, as well as at least
marginally favorable theta-e advection across the coastal plains to
the sounds and Outer Banks.  

A partly modified version of the air mass now evident south of the
front over the Gulf Stream (east of GA/FL) should advect northward
with and following what should be a rather diffuse warm-frontal
passage.  The greatest northward and inland extent of favorable
boundary-layer theta-e for surface-based convection may occur in the
last few hours of the period over eastern NC and perhaps a part of
southeastern VA, following a swath of pre-warm-frontal precip.  In
any event, modest low/middle-level lapse rates will render this a
low-CAPE, strengthening-shear scenario, with MLCAPE mostly less than
800 J/kg, and diminishing with inland extent.  This will support a
likely messy melange of blended convective modes from discrete to
densely clustered, in the form of multicells, small bows and at
least a few supercells.

..Edwards/Broyles.. 11/29/2020

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