cloudbandPy 1.0: an automated algorithm for the detection of tropical–extratropical cloud bands

Pilon, Romain; Domeisen, Daniela I. V.

Persistent and organized convective cloud systems that arise in convergence zones can lead to the formation of synoptic cloud bands extending from the tropics to the extratropics. These cloud bands are responsible for heavy precipitation and are often a combination of tropical intrusions of extratropical Rossby waves and processes originating from the tropics. Detecting these cloud bands presents a valuable opportunity to enhance our understanding of the variability of these systems and the underlying processes that govern their behavior and that connect the tropics and the extratropics. This paper presents a new atmospheric cloud band detection method based on outgoing longwave radiation using computer vision techniques, which offers enhanced capabilities to identify long cloud bands across diverse gridded datasets and variables. The method is specifically designed to detect extended tropical–extratropical convective cloud bands, ensuring accurate identification and analysis of these dynamic atmospheric features in convergence zones. The code allows for easy configuration and adaptation of the algorithm to meet specific research needs. The method handles cloud band merging and splitting, which allows for an understanding of the life cycle of cloud bands and their climatology. This algorithm lays the groundwork for improving our understanding of the large-scale processes that are involved in the formation and life cycle of cloud bands and the connections between tropical and extratropical regions as well as evaluating the differences in cloud band types between different ocean basins.

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Pilon, Romain / Domeisen, Daniela I. V.: cloudbandPy 1.0: an automated algorithm for the detection of tropical–extratropical cloud bands. 2024. Copernicus Publications.

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