Cloud Detectors

* Patent pending

Our patented cloud detectors are based on wide field-of-view imaging polarimetry. The polarization patterns help our algorithms to detect cloudiness with higher accuracy and higher reliability compared to other cloud detectors. Polarimetry also help us estimate cloud-base height distribution on the visible sky dome.

The Challenge

The meteorology stations are able to measure almost all the environmental parameters used by the climatic models for weather forecasts automatically. The only exception is cloudiness, that is still estimated by human observers. This method is unreliable, inaccurate and expensive.
Cloud base height - another parameter of the climatic models - is usually measured by an accurate LIDAR, that is able to make point source measurements, i.e. the LIDAR only measures cloud base height in one point, that is usually the zenith.

The Solution

By using 180° field-of-view imaging polarimetry we can measure the cloud distribution accurately and reliably.
By extending a LIDAR with our polarimeter we can measure cloud base height distribution for the whole sky dome.


Meteorology, airports, sport events, outdoor activities


One-camera model "Polarstern"

Three-camera model "Pasadena"
Durable and portable casing with transparent protective dome

Installation on board RV Polarstern