Satellite Help

What is Satellite?

Satellite images originally processed by the Bureau of Meteorology from the geostationary satellite Himawari-8 operated by the Japan Meteorological Agency, updated every ten minutes, freely available (in real-time) for non-commercial use at Bureau of Meteorology FTP Server. The high-definition satellite images are conveniently matched to the forecast map regions.

Day + Night: True-colour images based on reflected visible light. These are useful, for example, for identifying fog and low cloud, which may not be visible in thermal infrared images because it has a similar temperature to the ground below. The visible light images only show parts of the Earth that are in daylight. Areas with no sunlight to reflect are replaced with greyscale thermal infrared imagery. To match the familiar colour of clouds, the infrared imagery colour table is inversed, which shows cloud as shades of white.

Visible Greyscale: Greyscale images based on one single visible wavelength (in comparison to the true colour image which combines three). These images will appear black in regions of no sunlight, i.e. night-time.

Infrared Greyscale: Infrared (IR) images are derived from radiation emitted from the Earth and its atmosphere at thermal-infrared wavelengths (10-12 um). These images provide information on the temperature of the underlying surface or cloud. IR images are available 24 hours per day because temperatures can always be measured. This is in contrast to visible images, which are only available during daylight hours. Temperatures are represented by a greyscale, where black and white represent the hottest and coldest areas respectively. As clouds tend to be cooler than the ground or sea below (not always the case for low-lying clouds), they appear as light grey to white.

Infrared + Zehr: Ray Zehr from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration developed the Zehr enhancement, which applies temperature colour ranges to the cold end of the scale. This highlights deep convection that is generally associated with tropical cyclones and thunderstorms. These images can be useful in tracking the movement of tropical cyclones.

Water Vapour: Colour-enhanced images showing a measure of the amount of water vapour contained in the mid to upper levels of the troposphere. These images can be used to determine moisture advection (horizontal transport from one region to another), vertical movement of air (rising and sinking or air) and synoptic features such as short wave troughs, ridges and jet streams. Colour-enhanced imagery helps to show how saturated an area is.

Changing Satellite Type

To change the satellite image type, from the Satellite page, swipe the satellite image vertically up or down, or select the Day + Night, Visible Greyscale, Infrared Greyscale, Infrared + Zehr or Water Vapour button. The satellite region will remain unchanged. The meteogram location will be displayed with a rotating pin, and when selected will display the forecast meteogram. Visit the Bureau of Meteorology Satellite Viewer About Page for more information about the satellite images or watch the following video.

Changing Satellite Region

To change the satellite region (Australia, SE Australia, Victoria, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory, SE Queensland, North Queensland, Northern Territory, Central Australia, NW Western Australia, SW Western Australia, South Australia, Tasmania), from the Satellite page, swipe over the region name in the title of the image, or select the Australia map in the top left corner of your display or the REGION button. Select the region required from the list of choices displayed. The satellite type will remain unchanged. The meteogram location will be displayed with a rotating pin, and when selected will display the forecast meteogram.

Animating Satellite Image

To animate the satellite images, from the Satellite page, swipe over the middle of the image horizontally or select the Play/Stop Animation button on the top right of the map or select the SATELLITE Loop/Image button to start/stop the satellite image animation. To scrub the timeline swipe the animation horizontally to interact with the images while playing. The satellite type and region will remain unchanged. The meteogram location will be displayed with a rotating pin, and when selected will display the forecast meteogram.

Switching between Map, Meteogram and Satellite

To switch between Map, Meteogram or Satellite, swipe the website top banner from left or right, or right to left. If you change your map or satellite region and then select Meteogram the location will be reset to the capital city associated with the selected region. If you change your meteogram location and then select Map or Satellite the region will automatically revert to the region associated with the selected meteogram location.

Displaying Cloud Camera

To display the nearest cloud camera to the current meteogram location select the CLOUDCAM button on the Dark Sky, Meteogram, Radar or Satellite page. The cloud camera image(s) will be displayed with the cloud camera name, display/hide overlay and astronomy/storm mode toggles, and a list of other cloud cameras. More than one camera image may be displayed by sliding the scroll bar or swiping the screen. Cardinal points will be plotted on top of the image. If Display Overlay is selected, icons for other cloud cameras may be plotted on top of the camera images. In Astronomy Mode, only your selected cloud cameras will be plotted as icons on the camera image, map, radar and satellite pages. In Storm Mode, all cloud cameras will be plotted as icons on the camera image, map, radar and satellite pages.

Displaying Location

To display any location on the map, radar or satellite image, from the Map, Radar or Satellite page, select the Australia map in the top left corner of your display or the REGION button. Enter the postcode or name of your location in the Location field and press enter or select the magnifying glass button. You will be presented with a list of corresponding suburbs if you have entered a postcode, or similarly named suburbs in various states, if you have entered the name of the location. Choose your location and select the Go to Map button to view your location, as a red pulsating pin, on the map. Alternatively, you can select the red pulsating pin to directly access the GPS locator to find your current location, or enter your latitude and longitude coordinates. To remove the location pin displayed on the maps, select the Australia map in the top left corner of your display or the REGION button, and select the now highlighted red pulsating pin to remove the GPS pin.

Tablets and Mobile Phones

The Cloud Free Night website has been optimised for mobile devices. The images will preload to minimize flickering between displays. The load times will depend on your connection speed.

Night Vision Mode

To change your display to a red filter select the moon/star icon in the top right corner of your display. This icon design is also a visual indication of the current moon phase.

Displaying Series Layout

To display a series layout of the displayed product select the series layout icon below the moon/star icon in the top right corner of your display. Select the display type required from the list of choices displayed. You can create a PDF file of the selected product series layout if a printer icon appears in the top right corner of your display.

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©2018 - Cloud Free Night. All rights reserved. - January 23, 2018, 23:09 - 23/01/2018 12:09 UTC