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Cloud-Base-Height Estimation from Paired Ground-Based Hemispherical Observations

Evgueni KassianovPacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, Washington

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Charles N. LongPacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, Washington

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Jason ChristyPacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, Washington

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Abstract

Total-sky imager (TSI) and hemispheric-sky imager (HSI) each have a hemispherical field of view, and many TSIs are now deployed. These instruments have been used routinely to provide a time series of the fractional sky cover only. In this study, the possible retrieval of cloud-base height (CBH) from TSI surface observations is examined. This paper presents a validation analysis of a new retrieval using both a model-output inverse problem and independent, ground-based micropulse lidar data. The obtained results suggest that, at least for single-layer cloud fields, moderately accurate (within ∼0.35 km) CBH retrieval is possible.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Evgueni I. Kassianov, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, 902 Battelle Boulevard, P.O. Box 999, Richland, WA 99352. evgueni.kassianov@pnl.gov

Abstract

Total-sky imager (TSI) and hemispheric-sky imager (HSI) each have a hemispherical field of view, and many TSIs are now deployed. These instruments have been used routinely to provide a time series of the fractional sky cover only. In this study, the possible retrieval of cloud-base height (CBH) from TSI surface observations is examined. This paper presents a validation analysis of a new retrieval using both a model-output inverse problem and independent, ground-based micropulse lidar data. The obtained results suggest that, at least for single-layer cloud fields, moderately accurate (within ∼0.35 km) CBH retrieval is possible.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Evgueni I. Kassianov, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, 902 Battelle Boulevard, P.O. Box 999, Richland, WA 99352. evgueni.kassianov@pnl.gov

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