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Regional and Mesoscale Meteorology Branch

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Regional Satellite Cloud Composites from GOES


Bernie Connell



Archived Training





Learning Objectives:

  • To learn what a regional satellite cloud composite is.
  • To find out what types of cloud composites can be created.
  • To find out how cloud composites fit into the forecast process.


This module reflects how one can create and use cloud composites on a regional scale to assist with everyday forecasting tasks. Cloud composites refer to a shorter time span than cloud climatology. This module highlights simple techniques used to create the cloud composites and regional applications used to visualize weather patterns – all from the diurnal geostationary satellite.

Training Session Options

NOAA/NWS students – to begin the training, use the web-based video, YouTube video, or audio playback options below (if present for this session). Certificates of completion for NOAA/NWS employees can be obtained by accessing the session via the Commerce Learn Center

  1. Audio playback (recommended for low-bandwidth users) – This is an audio playback version in the form of a downloadable VISITview and can be taken at anytime.
    1. Create a directory to download the audio playback file (59 MB) from the following link:
    2. After extracting the files into that directory click on either the visitplay.bat or visitauto.bat file to start the lesson. If both files are present, use visitauto.bat

References/Additional Links

  • RAMMB Satellite Climatology Applications:
  • Combs, C. L., R. Mazur, J. V. Clark, M. K. Nordquist, and D. A. Molenar, 2010: An effort to improve marine stratus forecasts using satellite cloud climatologies for the Eureka, CA region. 17th Conference on Satellite Meteorology and Oceanography, 27-30 September, Annapolis, MD, Amer. Meteor. Soc., P9.16.
  • Combs, C.L., M. Weiland, M. DeMaria, and T.H. Vonder Haar, 2003: Examining high wind events using satellite cloud cover composites over the Cheyenne, WY region. 12th Conference on Satellite Meteorology and Oceanography, 10-14 February, Long Beach, CA, Amer. Meteor. Soc., CD-ROM, P2.25.
  • Connell, B. H., K. J. Gould, and J. F. W. Purdom, 2001: High resolution GOES-8 visible and infrared cloud frequency composites over Northern Florida during the Summers 1996-1999. Wea. Forecasting, 16, 713-724. (Bernie can send an electronic version; send a request to her at the email listed below)
This course is Basic

There are no prerequisites


Bernie Connell