The amount of data from the world’s weather satellites is overwhelming. While each type of data is valuable, it’s almost impossible to use them
all operationally. It’s like trying to drink from a fire hose; there’s simply too much data to absorb, and much of it ends up not being used.
“Red, Blue, Green” or RGB processing is a simple but powerful technique that consolidates different channels of satellite imagery into single products that are easy for forecasters to use. RGB processing used to be a visualization technique used mainly in research. But due to its popularity, it is increasingly available to operational forecasters. A pre-requisite for this, however, is the standardization of RGB products, i.e. the selection of the most useful RGB products for operational forecasting, generated at each Meteorological Service with the same identical standard method/recipe.
The combination of individual images into RGB colour composites is modernizing the interpretation of satellite imagery. While black and white imagery still has its uses, it often cannot match the effectiveness of RGB products. In fact, RGB images are often more useful than traditional colour image enhancements.
The Flexible Combined Imager (FCI) of MTG will open new possibilities of RGB products, with higher temporal and spatial resolution and better accuracy (less noise). Of particular interest will be the new NIR2.25 band that will improve cloud phase detection and detection of hot/large fires. Two new RGBs related to this channel will be presented. Furthermore, some standard RGBs will need to be tuned to account for the slight changes in central wavelength and band width. Some Himawari examples for this tuning will be given. Finally, the issue of local versions of RGB products will be addressed using the examples of “tropical” Night Microphysics and Airmass RGBs.
Filed under Keywords:
RGB, MTG, FCI, Airmass RGB, Night Microphysics RGB