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Domenico Cimini
,
Carmine Serio
,
Guido Masiello
,
Pietro Mastro
,
Elisabetta Ricciardelli
,
Francesco Di Paola
,
Salvatore Larosa
,
Donatello Gallucci
,
Tim Hultberg
,
Thomas August
, and
Filomena Romano

Abstract

Observations from spaceborne microwave (MW) and infrared (IR) passive sensors are the backbone of current satellite meteorology, essential for data assimilation into modern numerical weather prediction and for climate benchmarking. While MW and IR observations from space offer complementary features with respect to cloud properties, their synergy for cloud investigation is currently underexplored, despite the presence of both MW and IR sensors on operational meteorological satellites such as the EUMETSAT Polar System (EPS) MetOp series. As such, several key cloud microphysical properties are not part of the operational products available from EPS MetOp sensors. In addition, the EPS Second Generation (EPS-SG) series, scheduled for launch starting from 2024 onward, will carry sensors such as the Microwave Sounder (MWS) and IASI Next Generation (IASI-NG), enhancing spatial and spectral resolutions and thus capacity to retrieve cloud properties. This article presents the Combined MWS and IASI-NG Soundings for Cloud Properties (ComboCloud) project, funded by EUMETSAT with the overall objective to specify, prototype, and validate algorithms for the retrieval of cloud microphysical properties (e.g., water content and drop effective radius) from the synergy of passive MW and IR observations. The article presents the synergy rationale, the algorithm design, and the results obtained exploiting simulated observations from EPS and EPS-SG sensors, quantifying the benefits to be expected from the MW–IR synergy and the new generation sensors.

Open access
K. Dieter Klaes
,
Jörg Ackermann
,
Craig Anderson
,
Yago Andres
,
Thomas August
,
Régis Borde
,
Bojan Bojkov
,
Leonid Butenko
,
Alessandra Cacciari
,
Dorothée Coppens
,
Marc Crapeau
,
Stephanie Guedj
,
Olivier Hautecoeur
,
Tim Hultberg
,
Rüdiger Lang
,
Stefanie Linow
,
Christian Marquardt
,
Rosemarie Munro
,
Carlo Pettirossi
,
Gabriele Poli
,
Francesca Ticconi
,
Olivier Vandermarcq
,
Mayte Vasquez
, and
Margarita Vazquez-Navarro

Abstract

After successful launch in November 2018 and successful commissioning of Metop-C, all three satellites of the EUMETSAT Polar System (EPS) are in orbit together and operational. EPS is part of the Initial Joint Polar System (IJPS) with the United States (NOAA) and provides the service in the midmorning orbit. The Metop satellites carry a mission payload of sounding and imaging instruments, which allow provision of support to operational meteorology and climate monitoring, which are the main mission objectives for EPS. Applications include numerical weather prediction, atmospheric composition monitoring, and marine meteorology. Climate monitoring is supported through the generation of long time series through the program duration of 20+ years. The payload was developed and contributed by partners, including NOAA, CNES, and ESA. EUMETSAT and ESA developed the space segment in cooperation. The system has proven its value since the first satellite Metop-A, with enhanced products at high reliability for atmospheric sounding, delivered a very strong positive impact on NWP and results beyond expectations for atmospheric composition and chemistry applications. Having multiple satellites in orbit—now three—has enabled enhanced and additional products with increased impact, like atmospheric motion vector products at latitudes not accessible to geostationary observations or increased probability of radio occultations and hence atmospheric soundings with the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Radio-Occultation Atmospheric Sounder (GRAS) instruments. The paper gives an overview of the system and the embarked payload and discusses the benefits of generated products for applications and services. The conclusions point to the follow-on system, currently under development and assuring continuity for another 20+ years.

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