Typhoon Ma-on eyes earthquake-hit Japan!!

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  • “Ma-on” on a tropical storm

  • Storm losing intensity now!

  • Second strongest typhoon of Western Pacific Ocean 2011

File:Typhoon Ma-on 2011-07-17 0225Z.jpg

Typhoon Ma-on in the Pacific Ocean

Typhoon Ma-on is the 14th storm, 7th tropical storm and the second typhoon of the western Pacific Ocean. It is the second most strongest typhoon of the current tropical season of western Pacific after Super typhoon “Songda”. On July 17, the typhoon entered the Philippines territory that is why the PAGASA has named it “Ineng”. The western Pacific Ocean season begins from April 11 till December 31. Some 30 storms form in this basin, which is one of the busiest tropical basins in the world.

Updates of Typhoon Ma-on

Following are the update of typhoon Ma-on;

Update issued on July 20 at 9:00 pm JST – LAST UPDATE

Ma-on has made partial landfall over Japan and it is now moving back to open sea waters of Pacific, it is expected to move in east direction and then again in a NE direction. It will affect no land now, it will keep on losing strength and eventually transform into a remnant extra tropical storm.

Update issued on July 19 at 9:50 pm JST

Typhoon Ma-on weakens to tropical storm Ma-on now. Weakening has occurred due to land-interaction, conditions are favourable for storm to maintain its tropical storm status till 24 hours. However the threat seems to be hitting over for Japan but still some heavy to very heavy with extremely heavy rainfall likely with high winds and severe waves. The storm will now start moving in North-east direction and head back to open sea. The storm will start to gradually weaken from tomorrow morning.

Update issued on July 18 at 12:20 am JST

Typhoon Ma-on continues to weaken and now is a category-1 hurricane with winds upto 85 mph. The storm is about 550 nm south-west of Tokyo, the track of the storm has not changed. The system is moving at 14 knots in North direction. Threat of extremely heavy rainfall persist along with high winds and high waves.

Update issued on July 18 at 3:15 pm JST

Despite forecast of typhoon Ma-on gaining strength, it appears that the storm is weakening. Typhoon Ma-on has not completed an eye wall replacement yet, which it should have done yesterday. The typhoon has been moving in a North direction since last few hours at 6 knots. It could still gain strength and become a category-3 hurricane again but its time is running out as it approaches the land. However it will be a minimal typhoon when it will reach Japan.

Update issued on July 17 at 9:00 pm JST

Typhoon Ma-on is going through eye-wall replacement as of now, it has slightly weakened but will re-intensify again and could become a category-4 hurricane as well. The typhoon is moving at 10 knots in North-west direction since few hours. Typhoon may intensify in 24 to 36 hours.

Update issued on July 17 at 6:48 pm JST

The typhoon is expected to continue on a west to north-west direction over the next 24 to 48 hours, then start turning more north-west to north, and eventually start moving in a north-east direction. Some intensification will occur during this time and Ma-on could become a super typhoon.

How did it form?

On July 9, an area of thunderstorm were found near the Wake Island, which became a tropical depression on July 11 and on July 12 it became a tropical storm “Ma-on”. On July 16, Typhoon Ma-on absorbed another tropical storm “Tokage” due to Fujiwhara effect and since then it is gaining strength as the condition are favourable for further intensification.

The typhoon at the moment is going to Philippines but it does not threaten any part of Philippines . However PAGASA issued a gale warning to fishermen and small sea craft in Central and Southern Luzon. It said strong to gale-force winds are expected to affect the seaboards of Northern Luzon and the eastern seaboard of Central and of Southern Luzon. But Ma-on will encounter a trough of low pressure that will attract the storm in a North to North-east direction, bring it very close to Japan. As the storm is moved a little towards the Philippines territory, it is also expected to enhance the South-West monsoon activity.

Japan the likely target

Still in the midst of its long recovery from the earthquakes and tsunami of early March, Japan must now keep a watchful eye on typhoon Ma-on, rapidly intensifying in the western Pacific. The typhoon is very likely to bring sheets of rainfall to southern Japan as it passes extremely close to the tsunami-hit country. Rainfall might be between 10 inches to 20 inches.