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Methodology for Deriving Clear-Sky Erythemal Calibration Factors for UV Broadband Radiometers of the U.S. Central UV Calibration Facility

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  • 1 Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, University of Colorado, and NOAA/SRRB/ARL, Boulder, Colorado
  • | 2 NOAA/SRRB/ARL, Boulder, Colorado
  • | 3 National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, Maryland
  • | 4 USDA UVB Radiation Monitoring Program, Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado
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Abstract

In the United States, there are several federal agencies interested in the effects of UV radiation, which has resulted in the establishment of UV monitoring programs each with their own instrumentation and sites designed to address their specific needs. In 1993, participating agencies of the U.S. Global Change Research Program organized a UV Panel for coordinating the different agencies’ programs in order to ensure that UV data are intercalibrated, have common quality assurance and control procedures, and that the efforts among agencies are not duplicated.

In order to achieve these goals, in 1994 the UV Panel recommended formation of the U.S. Central UV Calibration Facility (CUCF), which is operated by the Surface Radiation and Research Branch of the Air Resources Laboratory of National and Oceanic Atmospheric Administration. The CUCF is responsible for characterizing and calibrating UV measuring instruments from several U.S. federal agencies. Part of this effort is to calibrate UVB broadband radiometers from these agencies. The CUCF has three Yankee Environmental Systems (YES UVB-1) and three Solar Light (SL 501A) broadband radiometers as reference standards that are routinely calibrated. For the past three years, clear-sky erythema calibration factors were determined for these standard UVB broadband radiometers by using simultaneously measured erythema-weighted irradiance determined during the annual North American Intercomparison. Comparisons between erythemally weighted irradiance calculated spectra supplied by spectroradiometers typically agreed better than ±2% for solar zenith angles less than 60°. The spectroradiometers were participating in an intercomparison event organized by the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the CUCF.

In this article, the calibration methodology is described for transferring the calibration from the spectroradiometers to the CUCF’s standard broadband radiometers. The CUCF standard broadband radiometers are used to calibrate UVB broadband radiometers from several U.S. UV monitoring networks. Erythemal calibration factors for the CUCF’s YES UVB-1 standard broadband radiometer triad are reported for 1994, 1995, and 1996. Erythemal calibration factors for CUCF’s SL 501A standard broadband radiometer triad are reported for 1996.

Corresponding author address: Kathleen O. Lantz, NOAA, R/E/ARx1, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80303.

Email: lantz@srrb.noaa.gov

Abstract

In the United States, there are several federal agencies interested in the effects of UV radiation, which has resulted in the establishment of UV monitoring programs each with their own instrumentation and sites designed to address their specific needs. In 1993, participating agencies of the U.S. Global Change Research Program organized a UV Panel for coordinating the different agencies’ programs in order to ensure that UV data are intercalibrated, have common quality assurance and control procedures, and that the efforts among agencies are not duplicated.

In order to achieve these goals, in 1994 the UV Panel recommended formation of the U.S. Central UV Calibration Facility (CUCF), which is operated by the Surface Radiation and Research Branch of the Air Resources Laboratory of National and Oceanic Atmospheric Administration. The CUCF is responsible for characterizing and calibrating UV measuring instruments from several U.S. federal agencies. Part of this effort is to calibrate UVB broadband radiometers from these agencies. The CUCF has three Yankee Environmental Systems (YES UVB-1) and three Solar Light (SL 501A) broadband radiometers as reference standards that are routinely calibrated. For the past three years, clear-sky erythema calibration factors were determined for these standard UVB broadband radiometers by using simultaneously measured erythema-weighted irradiance determined during the annual North American Intercomparison. Comparisons between erythemally weighted irradiance calculated spectra supplied by spectroradiometers typically agreed better than ±2% for solar zenith angles less than 60°. The spectroradiometers were participating in an intercomparison event organized by the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the CUCF.

In this article, the calibration methodology is described for transferring the calibration from the spectroradiometers to the CUCF’s standard broadband radiometers. The CUCF standard broadband radiometers are used to calibrate UVB broadband radiometers from several U.S. UV monitoring networks. Erythemal calibration factors for the CUCF’s YES UVB-1 standard broadband radiometer triad are reported for 1994, 1995, and 1996. Erythemal calibration factors for CUCF’s SL 501A standard broadband radiometer triad are reported for 1996.

Corresponding author address: Kathleen O. Lantz, NOAA, R/E/ARx1, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80303.

Email: lantz@srrb.noaa.gov

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