The April 2009 issue (Vol 58, No. 2) of the WMO Bulletin published by the World Meteorological Organization, Geneva,  carries this review of the book “Satellite Meteorology” by Prof. R. R. Kelkar:


Satellite Meteorology

R. R. Kelkar. BS Publications (2007).
ISBN 81-7800-137-3.
xix + 251 pp.
Price: US$ 26

Observing our weather from space—referred to here as satellite meteorology (SM)—has revolutionized our understanding of how the atmosphere, ocean, land and cryosphere operate and interact as part of a system. By the unique virtue of being global, satellite data have radically transformed the way meteorologists perform numerical weather prediction (NWP). Today, gigabytes of radiances from satellites are routinely assimilated into weather forecast models.

This book traces the fascinating history of satellite meteorology and its application to NWP, starting from the beginning of the space era up to the current state-of-the-art sensors, providing the reader with a comprehensive introduction to remote-sensing, climate monitoring and weather forecasting, with a particular focus on Indian meteorology. In particular, the book covers (and illustrates with nice colour figures) a variety of remote-sensing topics ranging from the orbits of the satellites, the types of radiation they sense, the physical understanding of their measurement and the retrieval of ocean, land and atmospheric parameters, up to the exploitation of their data to study tropical weather systems and constrain, validate and initialize NWP models.

The book constitutes very good material for university students planning a career in physics or Earth sciences, as well as a reference for scientists involved in Earth system research or operational weather prediction, in particular over tropical regions.

The author, R. R. Kelkar, who [was] ISRO Space Chair Professor at the University of Pune, India, has a long experience in satellite meteorology at the India Meteorological Department, and has done a very good job in synthesizing this fast growing field, highlighting its potential,as well as the related challenges and opportunities.

Reviewed by Pierre-Philippe Mathieu

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