Developing and improving techniques for processing satellite imagery data, in order to support nowcasting, forecasting, Numerical Weather Prediction and climate applications.
This area of research focuses on improving the way we use satellite imagery data for forecasting, NWP (Numerical Weather Prediction), and environmental and climate applications. On one level, this involves the development of value-added image products which help the human forecaster to interpret current weather or environmental situations - for example, images of cloud-top height, fog coverage or ash clouds from a recent volcanic eruption. The image data can also be processed to form data-sets suitable for climate applications - for example, historical sea-surface temperature analyses.
However, the images can also be used as data for assimilation into our NWP models to provide better initial conditions for many of the model variables. One example of this is the assimilation of wind information into the model via AMVs, which are derived by tracking features in a sequence of images. Other examples include the assimilation of humidity; aerosol and surface information in cloud-free areas, and improving the models' representation of cloud and humidity when clouds are present in the satellite data.