Weather Studies Satellite Image Loops
Lower temps Higher temps
The 10.3 μm “clean” infrared window band is less sensitive than other infrared window bands to water vapor absorption, and therefore improves atmospheric moisture corrections, aids in cloud and other atmospheric feature identification/classification, estimation of cloudtop brightness temperature and cloud particle size, and surface property characterization in derived products. Infrared satellite images are used by meteorologists to determine where clouds are, but more importantly, how the clouds are moving. The temperature dependency of IR emission makes it possible, for example, to distinguish low clouds from high clouds on an IR satellite image. In the part of the atmosphere where most clouds occur (the lowest 10 km or 6 mi. or so), air temperature usually decreases with increasing altitude. IR-derived temperatures are calibrated on a gray scale such that the brightest white indicates the lowest temperatures and dark gray or black indicates land and water features - the highest temperatures. Read more at NOAA.