Multispectral Imagery Usage during the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season (133)

Michael Folmer, UMD/ESSIC/CICS, College Park, MD

Andrea Schumacher, CIRA


Michael Brennan, NOAA/NWS/NCEP/NHC




The GOES-R Proving Ground Program were conceived to demonstrate and familiarize forecasters with next generation geostationary and polar-orbiting satellite products and capabilities that will be incorporated into NOAA operations. Prior to the launch of GOES-R (now GOES-16), the National Hurricane Center (NHC) and NESDIS Satellite Analysis Branch were introduced to various multispectral or red-green-blue (RGB) products to analyze tropical cyclones using Meteosat-9 or the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer instrument on the NASA Aqua and Terra satellites. On 1 March 2017, the first GOES-16 images started flowing in a beta test phase, allowing forecasters in the MPS to get some first looks in AWIPS II and N-AWIPS displays.

As GOES-16 Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI) channels were being introduced to forecasters, the Satellite Enhancement Team was preparing an assortment of RGB products that would be available to forecasters through AWIPS II. With assistance from the NASA Short-term Prediction Research and Transition Center (SPoRT), the NHC was able to use some of these RGBs in both N-AWIPS and AWIPS II during the active 2017 Hurricane season, with products like the Night-time Microphysics Advanced RGB mentioned in tropical cyclone discussions. This presentation will highlight some of the RGB usage during the 2017 hurricane season and also demonstrate situations when using RGBs in lieu of single channels is appropriate.