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Zhaoyan Liu, Mark Vaughan, David Winker, Chieko Kittaka, Brian Getzewich, Ralph Kuehn, Ali Omar, Kathleen Powell, Charles Trepte, and Chris Hostetler

1. Introduction The Cloud-Aerosol Lidar with Orthogonal Polarization (CALIOP), on board the Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observations ( CALIPSO ) satellite, was launched in April 2006 ( Winker et al. 2007 ), in formation with the CloudSat satellite, as part of the A-Train constellation of satellites ( Stephens et al. 2002 ). The main objectives of the CALIPSO mission are to provide global measurements of cloud and aerosol spatial distributions and optical properties

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David M. Winker, Mark A. Vaughan, Ali Omar, Yongxiang Hu, Kathleen A. Powell, Zhaoyan Liu, William H. Hunt, and Stuart A. Young

1. Introduction Aerosols and clouds have important impacts on the earth’s climate through their effects on the radiation budget and the role they play in the water cycle. Clouds reflect sunlight back to space and trap outgoing thermal radiation emitted by the earth’s surface, modulating the radiative balance of the earth–atmosphere system. The net effect of these competing cooling and warming effects depends on the altitude of the cloud layers and their multilayer structures. Aerosols also

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Mark A. Vaughan, Kathleen A. Powell, David M. Winker, Chris A. Hostetler, Ralph E. Kuehn, William H. Hunt, Brian J. Getzewich, Stuart A. Young, Zhaoyan Liu, and Matthew J. McGill

1. Introduction On 28 April 2006, eight years of close collaboration between the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) came to fruition with the launch of the Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observations (CALIPSO) mission from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California ( Winker et al. 2007 ). Launched simultaneously with the Cloudsat satellite aboard a single Delta-II rocket, CALIPSO is now an integral part of

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Ali H. Omar, David M. Winker, Mark A. Vaughan, Yongxiang Hu, Charles R. Trepte, Richard A. Ferrare, Kam-Pui Lee, Chris A. Hostetler, Chieko Kittaka, Raymond R. Rogers, Ralph E. Kuehn, and Zhaoyan Liu

1. Introduction Aerosol classification can take many forms. For the purpose of estimating human-induced aerosol radiative forcing estimates, aerosols are broadly classified as anthropogenic (urban/industrial pollution and biomass burning) and natural (desert dust, sea salt, biogenic, and volcanic) aerosols. For example, in estimating aerosol radiative forcing values, the most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report ( Solomon et al. 2007 ) not only adopts broad

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