EGU General Assembly 2023
© Author(s) 2023. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

TCDetect: A new method of Detecting the Presence of Tropical Cyclones using Deep Learning

Daniel Galea, Julian Kunkel, and Bryan Lawrence
Daniel Galea et al.
  • Lawrence Lvermore National Laboratory, United States of America

Tropical cyclones are high-impact weather events which have large human and economic effects, so it is important to be able to understand how their location, frequency and structure might change in a future climate.

Here, a lightweight deep learning model is presented which is intended for detecting the presence of tropical cyclones during the execution of numerical simulations for use in an online data reduction method. This will help to avoid saving vast amounts of data for analysis after the simulation is complete. With run-time detection, it might be possible to reduce the need for some of the high-frequency high-resolution output which would otherwise be required.

The model was trained on ERA-Interim reanalysis data from 1979 to 2017 and the training concentrated on delivering the highest possible recall rate (successful detection of cyclones) while rejecting enough data to make a difference in outputs.

When tested using data from the two subsequent years, the recall or probability of detection rate was 92%. The precision rate or success ratio obtained was that of 36%. For the desired data reduction application, if the desired target included all tropical cyclone events, even those which did not obtain hurricane-strength status, the effective precision was 85%.

The recall rate and the Area Under Curve for the Precision/Recall (AUC-PR) compare favourably with other methods of cyclone identification while using the smallest number of parameters for both training and inference. 

Work was performed under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Energy by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory under Contract DE-AC52-07NA27344. LLNL-ABS-843612

How to cite: Galea, D., Kunkel, J., and Lawrence, B.: TCDetect: A new method of Detecting the Presence of Tropical Cyclones using Deep Learning, EGU General Assembly 2023, Vienna, Austria, 24–28 Apr 2023, EGU23-3619,, 2023.