We analyzed long-term temperature trends in Utah using a relatively new signal processing method called Empirical Mode Decomposition (EMD). We evaluated the available weather records in Utah and selected 52 stations, which had records longer than 60 years, for analysis. We analyzed daily temperature data, both minimum and maximums, using the EMD method that decomposes non-stationary data (data with a trend) into periodic components and the underlying trend. Most decomposition algorithms require stationary data (no trend) with constant periods and temperature data do not meet these constraints. In addition to identifying the long-term trend, we also identified other periodic processes in the data. While the immediate goal of this research is to characterize long-term temperature trends and identify periodic processes and anomalies, these techniques can be applied to any time series data to characterize trends and identify anomalies. For example, this approach could be used to evaluate flow data in a river to separate the effects of dams or other regulatory structures from natural flow or to look at other water quality data over time to characterize the underlying trends and identify anomalies, and also identify periodic fluctuations in the data. If these periodic fluctuations can be associated with physical processes, the causes or drivers might be discovered helping to better understand the system. We used EMD to separate and analyze long-term temperature trends. This provides awareness and support to better evaluate the extremities of climate change. Using these methods we will be able to define many new aspects of nonlinear and nonstationary data. This research was successful and identified several areas in which it could be extended including data reconstruction for time periods missing data. This analysis tool can be applied to various other time series records.



College and Department

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology; Civil and Environmental Engineering



Date Submitted


Document Type





Hilbert, HHT, Hilbert Haung, Hilbert Haung Transforms, Statistics, Time Series, Weather Stations, Transforms, Signal Analysis, Fourier Transforms, Wavelet Transforms, Multivariate Analysis, Climatological, Intrinsic Mode Function, Empirical Mode Decomposition, IMF, EMD, Instantaneous Phase, Instantaneous Frequency, Residue