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  • Author or Editor: Knut Stamnes x
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R. Paul Lawson, Knut Stamnes, Jakob Stamnes, Pat Zmarzly, Jeff Koskuliks, Chris Roden, Qixu Mo, Michael Carrithers, and Geoffrey L. Bland

Abstract

A tethered-balloon system capable of making microphysical and radiative measurements in clouds is described and examples of measurements in boundary layer stratus clouds in the Arctic and at the South Pole are presented. A 43-m3 helium-filled balloon lofts an instrument package that is powered by two copper conductors in the tether. The instrument package can support several instruments, including, but not limited to, a cloud particle imager; a forward-scattering spectrometer probe; temperature, pressure, humidity, and wind sensors; ice nuclei filters; and a 4-π radiometer that measures actinic flux at 500 and 800 nm. The balloon can stay aloft for an extended period of time (in excess of 24 h) and conduct vertical profiles up to about 1–2 km, contingent upon payload weight, wind speed, and surface elevation. Examples of measurements in mixed-phase clouds at Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard (79°N), and at the South Pole are discussed. The stratus clouds at Ny-Ålesund ranged in temperature from 0° to −10°C and were mostly mixed phase with heavily rimed ice particles, even when cloud-top temperatures were warmer than −5°C. Conversely, mixed-phase clouds at the South Pole contained regions with only water drops at temperatures as cold as −32°C and were often composed of pristine ice crystals. The radiative properties of mixed-phase clouds are a critical component of radiative transfer in polar regions, which, in turn, is a lynch pin for climate change on a global scale.

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Matteo Ottaviani, Knut Stamnes, Jeff Koskulics, Hans Eide, Steven R. Long, Wenying Su, and Warren Wiscombe

Abstract

The reflection of sunlight from a wavy water surface, often referred to as sun glint, is a well-known phenomenon that presents challenges but also hitherto untapped opportunities in remote sensing based on satellite imagery. Despite being extensively investigated in the open ocean, sun glint lacks a fundamental characterization obtained under controlled laboratory conditions. A novel apparatus is presented, which is suitable for highly time-resolved measurements of light reflection from different computer-controlled wave states, with special emphasis on the detection of the polarization components. Such a system can help establish a link between the evanescent “atomic glints” from a single wave facet and the familiar sunglint pattern obtained by time averaging over a surface area containing many facets.

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Jeffrey Koskulics, Steven Englehardt, Steven Long, Yongxiang Hu, Matteo Ottaviani, and Knut Stamnes

Abstract

Submerged objects viewed through wavy water surfaces appear distorted by refraction. An imaging system exploiting this effect is implemented using a submerged planar light source designed so that color images reveal features of small-amplitude waves in a wind-wave tank. The system is described by a nonlinear model of image formation based on the geometry of refraction, spectral emission from the light source, radiative transfer through the water and surface, and camera spectral response. Surface normal vector components are retrieved from the color image data using an iterative solution to the nonlinear model. The surface topography is then retrieved using a linear model that combines surface normal data with a priori constraints on elevation and curvature. The high-resolution topographic data reveal small-amplitude waves spanning wavelength scales from capillary through short gravity wave regimes. The system capabilities are demonstrated in the retrieval of test surfaces, and of a case of wind-driven waves, using data collected at high spatial and temporal resolution in a wave tank. The approach of using a physical model of image formation with inverse solution methods provides an example of how surface topography can be retrieved and may be applicable to data from other similar instruments.

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