Structure and Presentation of CMs in SatManu

SatManu contains more than 60 different CMs of different scales. They are presented in two different ways: a "Full Version" and a "Short Version".

Full Versions

Each chapter of a CM follows the same structure:

  1. Appearance in Satellite Images
  2. Meteorological Physical Background
  3. Key Parameters
  4. Typical Appearance in Vertical Cross Sections
  5. Weather Events
  6. References
  7. Special Investigations

In all of these chapters the content is described with the help of schematics and one or two real weather events which demonstrate the described features and parameters.

The main goal of a CMs diagnosis with the help of SatManu is:

Therefore, each CM in SatManu starts with the chapters "Appearance in satellite images" as the first and "Meteorological Physical Background" as the second one.

1. Chapter "Appearance in Satellite Images"

In this chapter the typical cloud configurations and their features are described. All classical satellite channels like VIS, IR and WV channel as well as indicative RGBs, difference channels and enhanced channels are presented and described.
(Link to chapter "Guidance how to use SatManu"/chapter 1: Appearance in satellite images)

2. Chapter "Meteorological Physical Background"

This chapter summarizes the physical tropospheric processes causing the phenomenon. It is not the purpose of SatManu to go into detail on theoretical mathematical descriptions and their derivations; a reference list is provided for those wanting to read more about these theories.

Sometimes these are quite basic and well-founded theories, and sometimes these theories or models are still being discussed. If there are differing opinions or controversial claims in the literature, they are mentioned in the chapter.

For instance, the polar front theory (Norwegian school; Bjerkness and Solberg) is well known and basic knowledge in meteorology, but it has strengths and weaknesses and there are other models of cyclogenetic development, such as the Conveyor Belt Theories or the Shapiro-Keyser theory.

Appearance in satellite images and the meteorological background processes provide the reader with an initial impression of the topic; sometimes there is more than one CM being discussed.

At this stage in the procedure, numerical model parameters and observation come into play. The choice of CM from the first two steps has to be confirmed or clarified by looking into the numerical key parameters of these processes on isobaric and (moist) isentropic surfaces.
(Link to chapter "Guidance how to use SatManu" / chapter 2: meteorological-physical background)

3. Chapter "Key Parameters"

The chapter has two goals:

  1. defining those numerical model parameters (basic and/or derived) which explain and mirror the different CMs best and are therefore "key parameters" for them
  2. describing the typical features these key parameters show.

The following link offers detail on the numerical model material a forecaster has available and guidance on relevant parameters and how to make judgements based on appearance and intensity. The intensity of a phenomenon matters in that sometimes it is abnormally strong, or too weak to account for all the evidence on its own, and as a result other processes and CMs have to be taken into account.
(Link to chapter "Guidance how to use SatManu" / chapter 3: Key parameters)

4. Chapter "Typical Appearance in Vertical Cross Sections"

This chapter presents a three-dimensional view of the phenomenon, often crucial for understanding the situation. Also, the two aforementioned points a) and b) are discussed in the context of parameters on isentropic surfaces.
(Link to chapter "Guidance how to use SatManu" / chapter 4: Typical appearance in vertical Cross Sections)

5. Chapter "Weather events"

This chapter summarizes the weather events resulting from the scenarios covered in the CM. A table summarizes all commonly observed weather events, up to extremely severe cases. A comparison with real weather reports helps to decide if the case at hand involves a weak, normal or severe case for which a weather warning has to be issued.
(Link to chapter "Guidance how to use SatManu" / chapter 5: Weather events)

6. Chapter "References"

References - as already mentioned - will indicate:

7. Special Investigations

For some conceptual models a sub-group of cases showing special features but belonging clearly to the main CM are treated in those chapters.

Examples are for instance:

Short Versions

In SatManu there is also a link to a segment called "Short Versions". It contains abridged versions of all CMs' contents. As the full versions of the CMs are often quite comprehensive, these short versions should help a forecaster perform the evaluation of an actual case in an efficient and time-saving way and can serve students as a synopsis of the main results.

There are links between both the full and the short version chapters.