Snow - EW 2020

31 Minutes

Mária Putsay, (retired OMSZ)

Visual snow detection using the images of the present European geostationary satellite

Published: 22 February 2021

Single channels and RGB types will be discussed and compared from the snow detection point of view: how effectively they can be used for this purpose, which benefits and limitations they have. Physical background will be discussed and several examples will be shown.

Ideally an RGB type is usable for snow detection if the snow-covered cloud-free surface has good colour contrast against both now-free surface and clouds. Practically, one problem may cause difficulty: ice clouds and snowy land often appear similarly. Not surprising: their physical properties are similar as both consist of ice crystals. The presentation discusses which RGB types show snow and ice clouds less similarly. Forecasters usually look at animations, this also helps to distinguish snow covered area from moving ice clouds.

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