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Advances in Meteorology
Volume 2017, Article ID 5916150, 12 pages
Research Article

Climatological Behavior of Precipitating Clouds in the Northeast Region of Brazil

Center for Weather Forecasting and Climate Research, Cachoeira Paulista, SP, Brazil

Correspondence should be addressed to Rayana Santos Araújo Palharini; moc.liamg@inirahlap.anayar

Received 28 February 2017; Accepted 24 April 2017; Published 29 May 2017

Academic Editor: Tomeu Rigo

Copyright © 2017 Rayana Santos Araújo Palharini and Daniel Alejandro Vila. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This study aims to analyze the climatological classification of precipitating clouds in the Northeast of Brazil using the radar on board the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite. Thus, for this research a time series of 15 years of satellite data (period 1998–2012) was analyzed in order to identify what types of clouds produce precipitation estimated by Precipitation Radar (PR) and how often these clouds occur. From the results of this work it was possible to estimate the average relative frequency of each type of cloud present in weather systems that influence the Northeast of Brazil. In general, the stratiform clouds and shallow convective clouds are the most frequent in this region, but the associated rainfall is not as abundant as precipitation caused by deep convective clouds. It is also seen that a strong signal of shallow convective clouds modulates rainfall over the coastal areas of Northeast of Brazil and adjacent ocean. In this scenario, the main objective of this study is to contribute to a better understanding of the patterns of cloud types associated with precipitation and building a climatological analysis from the classification of clouds.