Search Results

You are looking at 1 - 10 of 10 items for :

  • Author or Editor: Zhien Wang x
  • Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society x
  • Refine by Access: All Content x
Clear All Modify Search
Kenneth Sassen
,
Jennifer M. Comstock
,
Zhien Wang
, and
Gerald G. Mace

Since October 1987, the University of Utah Facility for Atmospheric Remote Sensing (FARS) has been applied to the probing of the atmosphere, concentrating on the study of high-level clouds. Regular FARS measurements, which currently total ~3000 h of ruby lidar polarization data, have been directed toward basic cloud research, remote sensing techniques development, and to improving satellite cloud property retrieval methods and GCM predictions by providing climatologically representative cloud datasets and parameterizations. Although the initial studies involved mainly the ruby lidar, the facility has steadily evolved to include a range of visible, infrared, and microwave passive remote sensors, and state-of-the-art, high-resolution dual-wavelength scanning lidar and W-band Doppler radar systems. All three active systems display polarization diversity. In this paper are reviewed the specifications of FARS instrumentation and the research programs to which they have been applied. Four multiple remote sensor case studies of various cloud systems are presented to illustrate the research capabilities. Like a handful of similar sites elsewhere, such research centers dedicated to extended time observation programs have great potential for contributing to atmospheric monitoring and climate research.

Full access
Paquita Zuidema
,
Julie Haggerty
,
Maria Cadeddu
,
Jorgen Jensen
,
Emiliano Orlandi
,
Mario Mech
,
J. Vivekanandan
, and
Zhien Wang
Full access
Andrew J. Heymsfield
,
Patrick C. Kennedy
,
Steve Massie
,
Carl Schmitt
,
Zhien Wang
,
Samuel Haimov
, and
Art Rangno

The production of holes and channels in altocumulus clouds by two commercial turboprop aircraft is documented for the first time. An unprecedented dataset combining in situ measurements from microphysical probes with remote sensing measurements from cloud radar and lidar operating from the National Science Foundation (NSF)/NCAR C-130 aircraft, as well as ground-based NOAA and Colorado State University (CSU) radars, is used to describe the radar/lidar properties of a hole punch cloud and channel and the ensuing ice microphysical properties and structure of the ice column that subsequently developed. Ice particle production by commercial turboprop aircraft climbing through clouds much warmer than the regions where contrails are produced has the potential to significantly modify the cloud microphysical properties and effectively seed them under some conditions. Jet aircraft may also be producing hole punch clouds when flying through altocumulus with supercooled droplets at heights lower than their normal cruise altitudes, where contrails can form. Commercial aircraft can therefore generate ice and affect the clouds at temperatures as much as 30°C warmer than the −40°C contrail formation threshold temperature.

Full access
Zhien Wang
,
Jeffrey French
,
Gabor Vali
,
Perry Wechsler
,
Samuel Haimov
,
Alfred Rodi
,
Min Deng
,
Dave Leon
,
Jeff Snider
,
Liran Peng
, and
Andrew L. Pazmany

Clouds are a critical component of the Earth's coupled water and energy cycles. Poor understanding of cloud–radiation–dynamics feedbacks results in large uncertainties in forecasting human-induced climate changes. Better understanding of cloud microphysical and dynamical processes is critical to improving cloud parameterizations in climate models as well as in cloud-resolving models. Airborne in situ and remote sensing can make critical contributions to progress. Here, a new integrated cloud observation capability developed for the University of Wyoming King Air is described. The suite of instruments includes the Wyoming Cloud Lidar, a 183- GHz microwave radiometer, the Wyoming Cloud Radar, and in situ probes. Combined use of these remote sensor measurements yields more complete descriptions of the vertical structure of cloud microphysical properties and of cloud-scale dynamics than that attainable through ground-based remote sensing or in situ sampling alone. Together with detailed in situ data on aerosols, hydrometeors, water vapor, thermodynamic, and air motion parameters, an advanced observational capability was created to study cloud-scale processes from a single aircraft. The Wyoming Airborne Integrated Cloud Observation (WAICO) experiment was conducted to demonstrate these new capabilities and examples are presented to illustrate the results obtained.

Full access
Jennifer M. Comstock
,
Robert d'Entremont
,
Daniel DeSlover
,
Gerald G. Mace
,
Sergey Y. Matrosov
,
Sally A . McFarlane
,
Patrick Minnis
,
David Mitchell
,
Kenneth Sassen
,
Matthew D. Shupe
,
David D. Turner
, and
Zhien Wang

The large horizontal extent, with its location in the cold upper troposphere, and ice composition make cirrus clouds important modulators of the Earth's radiation budget and climate. Cirrus cloud microphysical properties are difficult to measure and model because they are inhomogeneous in nature and their ice crystal size distribution and habit are not well characterized. Accurate retrievals of cloud properties are crucial for improving the representation of cloud-scale processes in largescale models and for accurately predicting the Earth's future climate. A number of passive and active remote sensing retrieval algorithms exist for estimating the microphysical properties of upper-tropospheric clouds. We believe significant progress has been made in the evolution of these retrieval algorithms in the last decade; however, there is room for improvement. Members of the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) program Cloud Properties Working Group are involved in an intercomparison of optical depth τ and ice water path in ice clouds retrieved using ground-based instruments. The goals of this intercomparison are to evaluate the accuracy of state-of-the-art algorithms, quantify the uncertainties, and make recommendations for their improvement.

Currently, there are significant discrepancies among the algorithms for ice clouds with very small optical depths (τ < 0.3) and those with 1 < τ < 5. The good news is that for thin clouds (0.3 < τ < 1), the algorithms tend to converge. In this first stage of the intercomparison, we present results from a representative case study, compare the retrieved cloud properties with aircraft and satellite measurements, and perform a radiative closure experiment to begin gauging the accuracy of these retrieval algorithms.

Full access

THE CLOUDSAT MISSION AND THE A-TRAIN

A New Dimension of Space-Based Observations of Clouds and Precipitation

Graeme L. Stephens
,
Deborah G. Vane
,
Ronald J. Boain
,
Gerald G. Mace
,
Kenneth Sassen
,
Zhien Wang
,
Anthony J. Illingworth
,
Ewan J. O'connor
,
William B. Rossow
,
Stephen L. Durden
,
Steven D. Miller
,
Richard T. Austin
,
Angela Benedetti
,
Cristian Mitrescu
, and
the CloudSat Science Team

CloudSat is a satellite experiment designed to measure the vertical structure of clouds from space. The expected launch of CloudSat is planned for 2004, and once launched, CloudSat will orbit in formation as part of a constellation of satellites (the A-Train) that includes NASA's Aqua and Aura satellites, a NASA–CNES lidar satellite (CALIPSO), and a CNES satellite carrying a polarimeter (PARASOL). A unique feature that CloudSat brings to this constellation is the ability to fly a precise orbit enabling the fields of view of the CloudSat radar to be overlapped with the CALIPSO lidar footprint and the other measurements of the constellation. The precision and near simultaneity of this overlap creates a unique multisatellite observing system for studying the atmospheric processes essential to the hydrological cycle.

The vertical profiles of cloud properties provided by CloudSat on the global scale fill a critical gap in the investigation of feedback mechanisms linking clouds to climate. Measuring these profiles requires a combination of active and passive instruments, and this will be achieved by combining the radar data of CloudSat with data from other active and passive sensors of the constellation. This paper describes the underpinning science and general overview of the mission, provides some idea of the expected products and anticipated application of these products, and the potential capability of the A-Train for cloud observations. Notably, the CloudSat mission is expected to stimulate new areas of research on clouds. The mission also provides an important opportunity to demonstrate active sensor technology for future scientific and tactical applications. The CloudSat mission is a partnership between NASA's JPL, the Canadian Space Agency, Colorado State University, the U.S. Air Force, and the U.S. Department of Energy.

Full access
Bart Geerts
,
David Parsons
,
Conrad L. Ziegler
,
Tammy M. Weckwerth
,
Michael I. Biggerstaff
,
Richard D. Clark
,
Michael C. Coniglio
,
Belay B. Demoz
,
Richard A. Ferrare
,
William A. Gallus Jr.
,
Kevin Haghi
,
John M. Hanesiak
,
Petra M. Klein
,
Kevin R. Knupp
,
Karen Kosiba
,
Greg M. McFarquhar
,
James A. Moore
,
Amin R. Nehrir
,
Matthew D. Parker
,
James O. Pinto
,
Robert M. Rauber
,
Russ S. Schumacher
,
David D. Turner
,
Qing Wang
,
Xuguang Wang
,
Zhien Wang
, and
Joshua Wurman

Abstract

The central Great Plains region in North America has a nocturnal maximum in warm-season precipitation. Much of this precipitation comes from organized mesoscale convective systems (MCSs). This nocturnal maximum is counterintuitive in the sense that convective activity over the Great Plains is out of phase with the local generation of CAPE by solar heating of the surface. The lower troposphere in this nocturnal environment is typically characterized by a low-level jet (LLJ) just above a stable boundary layer (SBL), and convective available potential energy (CAPE) values that peak above the SBL, resulting in convection that may be elevated, with source air decoupled from the surface. Nocturnal MCS-induced cold pools often trigger undular bores and solitary waves within the SBL. A full understanding of the nocturnal precipitation maximum remains elusive, although it appears that bore-induced lifting and the LLJ may be instrumental to convection initiation and the maintenance of MCSs at night.

To gain insight into nocturnal MCSs, their essential ingredients, and paths toward improving the relatively poor predictive skill of nocturnal convection in weather and climate models, a large, multiagency field campaign called Plains Elevated Convection At Night (PECAN) was conducted in 2015. PECAN employed three research aircraft, an unprecedented coordinated array of nine mobile scanning radars, a fixed S-band radar, a unique mesoscale network of lower-tropospheric profiling systems called the PECAN Integrated Sounding Array (PISA), and numerous mobile-mesonet surface weather stations. The rich PECAN dataset is expected to improve our understanding and prediction of continental nocturnal warm-season precipitation. This article provides a summary of the PECAN field experiment and preliminary findings.

Full access
Leila M. V. Carvalho
,
Gert-Jan Duine
,
Craig Clements
,
Stephan F. J. De Wekker
,
Harindra J. S. Fernando
,
David R. Fitzjarrald
,
Robert G. Fovell
,
Charles Jones
,
Zhien Wang
,
Loren White
,
Anthony Bucholtz
,
Matthew J. Brewer
,
William Brown
,
Matt Burkhart
,
Edward Creegan
,
Min Deng
,
Marian de Orla-Barile
,
David Emmitt
,
Steve Greco
,
Terry Hock
,
James Kasic
,
Kiera Malarkey
,
Griffin Modjeski
,
Steven Oncley
,
Alison Rockwell
,
Daisuke Seto
,
Callum Thompson
, and
Holger Vömel

Abstract

Coastal Santa Barbara is among the most exposed communities to wildfire hazards in Southern California. Downslope, dry, and gusty windstorms are frequently observed on the south-facing slopes of the Santa Ynez Mountains that separate the Pacific Ocean from the Santa Ynez valley. These winds, known as “Sundowners,” peak after sunset and are strong throughout the night and early morning. The Sundowner Winds Experiment (SWEX) was a field campaign funded by the National Science Foundation that took place in Santa Barbara, California, between 1 April and 15 May 2022. It was a collaborative effort of 10 institutions to advance understanding and predictability of Sundowners, while providing rich datasets for developing new theories of downslope windstorms in coastal environments with similar geographic and climatic characteristics. Sundowner spatiotemporal characteristics are controlled by complex interactions among atmospheric processes occurring upstream (Santa Ynez valley), and downstream due to the influence of a cool and stable marine boundary layer. SWEX was designed to enhance spatial measurements to resolve local circulations and vertical structure from the surface to the midtroposphere and from the Santa Barbara Channel to the Santa Ynez valley. This article discusses how SWEX brought cutting-edge science and the strengths of multiple ground-based and mobile instrument platforms to bear on this important problem. Among them are flux towers, mobile and stationary lidars, wind profilers, ceilometers, radiosondes, and an aircraft equipped with three lidars and a dropsonde system. The unique features observed during SWEX using this network of sophisticated instruments are discussed here.

Open access
Brian J. Butterworth
,
Ankur R. Desai
,
Stefan Metzger
,
Philip A. Townsend
,
Mark D. Schwartz
,
Grant W. Petty
,
Matthias Mauder
,
Hannes Vogelmann
,
Christian G. Andresen
,
Travis J. Augustine
,
Timothy H. Bertram
,
William O.J. Brown
,
Michael Buban
,
Patricia Cleary
,
David J. Durden
,
Christopher R. Florian
,
Trevor J. Iglinski
,
Eric L. Kruger
,
Kathleen Lantz
,
Temple R. Lee
,
Tilden P. Meyers
,
James K. Mineau
,
Erik R. Olson
,
Steven P. Oncley
,
Sreenath Paleri
,
Rosalyn A. Pertzborn
,
Claire Pettersen
,
David M. Plummer
,
Laura D. Riihimaki
,
Eliceo Ruiz Guzman
,
Joseph Sedlar
,
Elizabeth N. Smith
,
Johannes Speidel
,
Paul C. Stoy
,
Matthias Sühring
,
Jonathan E. Thom
,
David D. Turner
,
Michael P. Vermeuel
,
Timothy J. Wagner
,
Zhien Wang
,
Luise Wanner
,
Loren D. White
,
James M. Wilczak
,
Daniel B. Wright
, and
Ting Zheng
Full access
Brian J. Butterworth
,
Ankur R. Desai
,
Philip A. Townsend
,
Grant W. Petty
,
Christian G. Andresen
,
Timothy H. Bertram
,
Eric L. Kruger
,
James K. Mineau
,
Erik R. Olson
,
Sreenath Paleri
,
Rosalyn A. Pertzborn
,
Claire Pettersen
,
Paul C. Stoy
,
Jonathan E. Thom
,
Michael P. Vermeuel
,
Timothy J. Wagner
,
Daniel B. Wright
,
Ting Zheng
,
Stefan Metzger
,
Mark D. Schwartz
,
Trevor J. Iglinski
,
Matthias Mauder
,
Johannes Speidel
,
Hannes Vogelmann
,
Luise Wanner
,
Travis J. Augustine
,
William O. J. Brown
,
Steven P. Oncley
,
Michael Buban
,
Temple R. Lee
,
Patricia Cleary
,
David J. Durden
,
Christopher R. Florian
,
Kathleen Lantz
,
Laura D. Riihimaki
,
Joseph Sedlar
,
Tilden P. Meyers
,
David M. Plummer
,
Eliceo Ruiz Guzman
,
Elizabeth N. Smith
,
Matthias Sühring
,
David D. Turner
,
Zhien Wang
,
Loren D. White
, and
James M. Wilczak

Abstract

The Chequamegon Heterogeneous Ecosystem Energy-Balance Study Enabled by a High-Density Extensive Array of Detectors 2019 (CHEESEHEAD19) is an ongoing National Science Foundation project based on an intensive field campaign that occurred from June to October 2019. The purpose of the study is to examine how the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) responds to spatial heterogeneity in surface energy fluxes. One of the main objectives is to test whether lack of energy balance closure measured by eddy covariance (EC) towers is related to mesoscale atmospheric processes. Finally, the project evaluates data-driven methods for scaling surface energy fluxes, with the aim to improve model–data comparison and integration. To address these questions, an extensive suite of ground, tower, profiling, and airborne instrumentation was deployed over a 10 km × 10 km domain of a heterogeneous forest ecosystem in the Chequamegon–Nicolet National Forest in northern Wisconsin, United States, centered on an existing 447-m tower that anchors an AmeriFlux/NOAA supersite (US-PFa/WLEF). The project deployed one of the world’s highest-density networks of above-canopy EC measurements of surface energy fluxes. This tower EC network was coupled with spatial measurements of EC fluxes from aircraft; maps of leaf and canopy properties derived from airborne spectroscopy, ground-based measurements of plant productivity, phenology, and physiology; and atmospheric profiles of wind, water vapor, and temperature using radar, sodar, lidar, microwave radiometers, infrared interferometers, and radiosondes. These observations are being used with large-eddy simulation and scaling experiments to better understand submesoscale processes and improve formulations of subgrid-scale processes in numerical weather and climate models.

Open access