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The eighteenth tropcial depression of the Eastern Pacific season formed yesterday and has now strengthened to Tropical Storm Nora in the far west of the basin, not far east of the eastern boundary of the Central Pacific. Indeed, it appears Nora will be another system to cross into the Central Pacific over the coming days.

Nora is moving slowly westwards, but should soon turn west-northwest, then north then northeast over the next 5 days. The reason for this is a breakdown of the ridging to the north currently in control of Nora due to a trough moving eastwards north of Hawaii. This should induce a recurve well southeast of Hawaii.

Nora is forecast to strengthen over the next few days as shear is low to moderate, and sea temperatures are warm. By day 4 and 5, shear will be increasing as the trough picks up Nora, and waters will cool along track, beginning a weakening trend. Before that, NHC expect a peak of 80kts (cat 1 hurricane).

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Nora has moved into the Central Pacific overnight. The storm has slowly strengthened and now has winds of 50kts. Nora is a small tropical storm and moderate shear has prevented quick intensification. Nora is forecast to strengthen a little more, and is now expected to peak at 60kts, just below hurricane intensity. After the peak, shear will rise causing weakening to begin.

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Nora's peak was indeed 60kts. The storm is now being hammered by shear, and winds have dropped to 40kts. Some convection continues to pulse near the LLCC, but keeps being sheared away. Shear is not expected to abate, so Nora should continue to weaken and as it does so, veer to the west as it becomes more influenced by the low level flow. The northeast recurve has not materialised and is no longer expected.

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Nora is hanging on for dear life. Winds are at 25kts, a tropical depression. A few cells of convection are firing to the east of the exposed LLCC, but unless organised convection develops, which appears unlikely, Nora will soon become a remnant low south of Hawaii.

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