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Dr Michael Cooke

Mike's research is aimed at improving satellite image data processing, interpretation and assimilation capabilities at the Met Office.

Areas of Expertise

  • Satellite imagery.
  • Volcanic cloud detection and retrieval.

Current Activities

Mike's work aims to enhance the use of existing and new satellite radiance observations to improve the tracking of hazardous volcanic clouds. Volcanic clouds are hazardous to aircraft and satellites are an important tool in tracking the plume following an eruption.

The SEVIRI instrument has flown on the EUMETSAT Meteosat Second Generation series of satellites since 2004, allowing geostationary images of the Earth's disc to be collected every 15 minutes, in both the solar and infrared spectral regions. These observations contain valuable information which is allowing the development of value-added products which are used as a visual aid to forecasters and to provide quantitative information.

Many other satellite instruments are used to track volcanic plumes such as MODIS, AVHRRIASI and AIRS. Mike's work aims at developing the use of these sensors to improve the information available to the London Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC).

Career Background

Mike has been working in the Satellite Applications group since autumn 2010. Before joining the Met Office, he studied at the University of Bristol and gained a PhD in Chemistry. His research focused on the global simulation of tropospheric ozone using detailed chemical mechanisms.

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