Short-term tropical cyclone intensity forecasting from satellite imagery based on the deviation angle variance technique

Liang Hu, Elizabeth A. Ritchie, J. Scott Tyo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The deviation angle variance (DAV) is a parameter that characterizes the level of organization of a cloud cluster compared with a perfectly axisymmetric tropical cyclone (TC) using satellite infrared (IR) imagery, and can be used to estimate the intensity of the TC. In this study, the DAV technique is further used to analyze the relationship between satellite imagery and TC future intensity over the North Atlantic basin. The results show that the DAV of the TC changes ahead of the TC intensity change, and this can be used to predict short-term TC intensity. The DAV-IR 24-h forecast is close to the National Hurricane Center (NHC) 24-h forecast, and the bias is lower than NHC and other methods during weakening periods. Furthermore, an improved TC intensity forecast is obtained by incorporating all four satellite bands. Using SST and TC latitude as the other two predictors in a linear regression model, the RMSE and MAE of the DAV 24-h forecast are 13.7 and 10.9 kt (1 kt ≈ 0.51 m s-1), respectively, and the skill space of the DAV is about 5.5% relative to the Statistical Hurricane Intensity Forecast model with inland decay (Decay-SHIFOR) during TC weakening periods. Considering the DAV is an independent intensity technique, it could potentially add value as a member of the suite of operational intensity forecast techniques, especially during TC weakening periods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)285-298
Number of pages14
JournalWeather and Forecasting
Volume35
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Forecasting
  • Satellite observations
  • Tropical cyclones

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atmospheric Science

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