Track deflection of typhoon Nesat (2017) as realized by multiresolution simulations of a global model

Ching Yuang Huang, Chien Hsiang Huang, William C. Skamarock

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8 Scopus citations


Typhoon Nesat (2017) headed west-northwestward toward Taiwan but took a relatively larger northward deflection about 300 km away and then a leftward deflection after landfall at northern Taiwan. A global model MPAS, employing a multiresolution of 60-15-3 km mesh, is used to investigate the underlying mechanisms of the track changes. The global model simulations are capable of resolving the detailed topographical effects of the Central Mountain Range (CMR) in Taiwan, giving reasonable 5 day tracks in agreement with the observations for Typhoons Soudelor (2015) and Megi (2016), and comparing better with the observed deflection of Nesat (2017) than the regional model simulation of WRF. Sensitivity experiments indicate that flattening the CMR only partially reduces the track deflection of Nesat, while the elimination of the initial cyclone over the South China Sea disables the possible Fujiwhara effect and leads to a southward-biased track with much weaker northward deflection. The northward deflection of Nesat is mainly in response to the wavenumber-1 (WN-1) horizontal PV advection as the southerly flow east of the typhoon center is enhanced by convergence with the outer cyclonic typhoon flow and the large-scale southwesterlies. Upward motions and PV in the troposphere thus are much stronger to the east of the center than to the west, resulting in westward translation induced by negative WN-1 vertical PV advection but eastward translation induced by positive WN-1 vertical differential latent heating to the east. Near landfall, with stronger upward motions produced over the northern CMR, vertical differential latent heating averaged in 3-8-km height becomes negative and thus retards the westward translation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1593-1613
Number of pages21
JournalMonthly Weather Review
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 May 2019


  • Hurricanes
  • Numerical analysis/modeling
  • Numerical weather prediction/forecasting
  • Orographic effects
  • Potential vorticity
  • Topographic effects


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