Typhoon Intensity Prediction with Vision Transformer (Papers Track)
Huanxin Chen (South China University of Technology); Pengshuai Yin (South China University of Technology); Huichou Huang (City University of Hong Kong); Qingyao Wu (South China University of Technology); Ruirui Liu (Brunel University London); Xiatian Zhu (University of Surrey)
Predicting typhoon intensity accurately across space and time is crucial for issuing timely disaster warnings and facilitating emergency response. This has vast potential for minimizing life losses and property damages as well as reducing economic and environmental impacts. Leveraging satellite imagery for scenario analysis is effective but also introduces additional challenges due to the complex relations among clouds and the highly dynamic context. Existing deep learning methods in this domain rely on convolutional neural networks (CNNs), which suffer from limited per-layer receptive fields. This limitation hinders their ability to capture long-range dependencies and global contextual knowledge during inference. In response, we introduce a novel approach, namely "Typhoon Intensity Transformer" (Tint), which leverages self-attention mechanisms with global receptive fields per layer. Tint adopts a sequence-to-sequence feature representation learning perspective. It begins by cutting a given satellite image into a sequence of patches and recursively employs self-attention operations to extract both local and global contextual relations between all patch pairs simultaneously, thereby enhancing per-patch feature representation learning. Extensive experiments on a publicly available typhoon benchmark validate the efficacy of Tint in comparison with both state-of-the-art deep learning and conventional meteorological methods. Our code is available at https://github.com/chen-huanxin/Tint.