SANBI Oct 2013
Oct 8, 2013Limited, anyone with the link
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Photo: I retired from the US Government on 31 July 2013...so this is what I did as part of that research position.
Photo: tools of the trade - of a tropical research meteorologist
Photo: interaction with a US Botanist, working in Bolivia, led to first biodiversity-related publication on cloud forest distributions on eastern slope sof the Andes.
Photo: a photo of me around 1972 - when I graduated from High School in San Diego, California.
Photo: this is why this satellite work is potentially important
Photo: such visible-imagery full-disk images are available every 3 hr or more often from geostationary satellites
Photo: averaging the same images for an entire year produces something like this - a "climatology" of cloudiness
Photo: this is an animation of infrared imagery available every 3 hr - averaged for one year's data.  it shows the diurnal cycle of cloudiness.  (loop won't run here).  whiter is colder (higher) clouds...
Photo: only satellite that has active radar measuring precipitation from space (TRMM=Tropical Rainfall measuring mission).  has some important limitations, spatial resolution and sampling.
Photo: one day's coverage of the TRMM satellite precipitation radar.
Photo: when averaged over many years (9 above) the mean fields look good
Photo: finer scale details are noisy due to insufficient sample size - even for 9+ years of data.
Photo: MODIS coverage in one day - sun synchronous so all imagery near same local time of day.
Photo: ignore this is a loop...
Photo: mean of one day's imagery (every 30 minutes) for Galapagos island area from geostationary satellite.  Note the importance of the islands/volcanoes in modifying the cloud field.
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Photo: stratus clouds off the southern California coast- clouds vary in thickness (opacity)
Photo: by selecting the brightness threshold of the pixel one can detect more or less clouds - thin clouds reflect less visible light than thick clouds.  ocean background is relatively dark.