Interpreting Satellite Infrared and Visible Images.
How does the thickness of a cloud change the way it looks from the satellite?
The image to the left is an example of an infrared (IR) image made from a radiometer flown on the GOES-8 satellite. This is very typical of the images you see on TV weather shows. A piece of this image has been extracted and appears as a square below the larger satellite image. This portion of the image contains a cloud and some clear sky areas. You can change the appearance of this extracted image by changing the cloud thickness, and thus the amount of water particles in the cloud, ( or the surface temperature. You do this by moving the sliding scales (scroll bars) accompanying the picture on the right.
You can modify the surface temperature with the horizontal sliding scale.