Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics

, Volume 119, Issue 1–2, pp 43–58 | Cite as

Tracing the origins and propagation of pre-tropical storm Debby (2006) mesoscale convective systems using pattern recognition and image fusion

  • Chaunté W. Lacewell
  • Abdollah Homaifar
  • Yuh-Lang Lin
Original Paper


This study is focused on developing pattern recognition and image fusion techniques to trace the origins and propagation of the pre-tropical storm (pre-TS) Debby (2006) mesoscale convective systems (MCSs) and African easterly waves (AEWs) using satellite imagery. These MCSs could be generating over mountains in North Africa and going through complicated splitting and merging processes. Therefore, an objectively analyzed MCS movement is essential. This study presents a technique which traces extracted features to find the origin of TS Debby. This technique produces a fused image with the most relevant information from water vapor and infrared satellite images, segments the cloud top height satellite images by clustering clouds, and tracks clouds to determine the origin of TS Debby (2006). The presented technique could be applied to other AEWs and MCSs which lead to tropical cyclogenesis to improve the numerical weather prediction over data sparse areas, such as over eastern and central North Africa.


Tropical Cyclone Discrete Wavelet Transform Image Fusion Mesoscale Convective System Pattern Recognition Technique 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The authors are very grateful to the anonymous reviewers for their helpful and insightful recommendations. This research was supported in part by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Educational Partnership Program under Cooperative Agreement No. NA06OAR4810187 and the Expeditions in Computing program of the National Science Foundation under Award No. CCF 1029731. The contributions to and the assistance of Kenneth R. Knapp of NOAA National Climatic Data Center to this research are greatly appreciated.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chaunté W. Lacewell
    • 1
  • Abdollah Homaifar
    • 1
  • Yuh-Lang Lin
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringNorth Carolina A&T State UniversityGreensboroUSA
  2. 2.Department of PhysicsNorth Carolina A&T State UniversityGreensboroUSA

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