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Eun-Han Kwon
Byung-Ju Sohn
Dong-Eon Chang
Myoung-Hwan Ahn
, and
Song Yang


Topographical influences on the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) Microwave Imager (TMI) rain retrievals over the terrain area of the Korean peninsula were examined using a training dataset constructed from numerical mesoscale model simulations in conjunction with radiative transfer calculations. By relating numerical model outputs to rain retrievals from simulated brightness temperatures, a positive relationship between topographically forced vertical motion and rain retrievals in the upstream region over the mountainous area was found. Based on the relationship obtained, three topographical correction methods were developed by incorporating slope-forced vertical motion and its associated upward vapor flux, and vapor flux convergence in the surface boundary layer into a scattering-based TMI rain retrieval algorithm.

The developed correction methods were then applied for the rain retrievals from simulated TMI brightness temperatures with model outputs and measured TMI brightness temperatures. Results showed that orographic influences on the rain formation can be included in the TMI rainfall algorithms, which tend to underestimate rainfall over the complex terrain area. It was shown that topographical corrections surely improve the rain retrieval when a strong rain event is present over the upslope region. Among various elements, moisture convergence in the boundary layer appears to be an important factor needed in the topographical correction. Overall topography-corrected estimates of rainfall showed a better agreement with ground measurements than those without correction, suggesting that satellite rain retrieval over the terrain area can be improved when accurate numerical forecast outputs are incorporated into the rain retrieval algorithm.

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