Search Results

You are looking at 1 - 10 of 15 items for

  • Author or Editor: M. C. Long x
  • All content x
Clear All Modify Search
C. N. Long, J. M. Sabburg, J. Calbó, and D. Pagès

Abstract

A discussion is presented of daytime sky imaging and techniques that may be applied to the analysis of full-color sky images to infer cloud macrophysical properties. Descriptions of two different types of sky-imaging systems developed by the authors are presented, one of which has been developed into a commercially available instrument. Retrievals of fractional sky cover from automated processing methods are compared to human retrievals, both from direct observations and visual analyses of sky images. Although some uncertainty exists in fractional sky cover retrievals from sky images, this uncertainty is no greater than that attached to human observations for the commercially available sky-imager retrievals. Thus, the application of automatic digital image processing techniques on sky images is a useful method to complement, or even replace, traditional human observations of sky cover and, potentially, cloud type. Additionally, the possibilities for inferring other cloud parameters such as cloud brokenness and solar obstruction further enhance the usefulness of sky imagers.

Full access
Annalisa Bracco, Matthew C. Long, Naomi M. Levine, R. Quinn Thomas, Curtis Deutsch, and Galen A. McKinley
Full access
C. N. Long, S. A. McFarlane, A. Del Genio, P. Minnis, T. P. Ackerman, J. Mather, J. Comstock, G. G. Mace, M. Jensen, and C. Jakob

The tropical western Pacific (TWP) is an important climatic region. Strong solar heating, warm sea surface temperatures, and the annual progression of the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ) across this region generate abundant convective systems, which through their effects on the heat and water budgets have a profound impact on global climate and precipitation. In order to accurately evaluate tropical cloud systems in models, measurements of tropical clouds, the environment in which they reside, and their impact on the radiation and water budgets are needed. Because of the remote location, ground-based datasets of cloud, atmosphere, and radiation properties from the TWP region have come primarily from shortterm field experiments. While providing extremely useful information on physical processes, these short-term datasets are limited in statistical and climatological information. To provide longterm measurements of the surface radiation budget in the tropics and the atmospheric properties that affect it, the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement program established a measurement site on Manus Island, Papua New Guinea, in 1996 and on the island republic of Nauru in late 1998. These sites provide unique datasets now available for more than 10 years on Manus and Nauru. This article presents examples of the scientific use of these datasets including characterization of cloud properties, analysis of cloud radiative forcing, model studies of tropical clouds and processes, and validation of satellite algorithms. New instrumentation recently installed at the Manus site will provide expanded opportunities for tropical atmospheric science.

Full access
Keith Lindsay, Gordon B. Bonan, Scott C. Doney, Forrest M. Hoffman, David M. Lawrence, Matthew C. Long, Natalie M. Mahowald, J. Keith Moore, James T. Randerson, and Peter E. Thornton

Abstract

Version 1 of the Community Earth System Model, in the configuration where its full carbon cycle is enabled, is introduced and documented. In this configuration, the terrestrial biogeochemical model, which includes carbon–nitrogen dynamics and is present in earlier model versions, is coupled to an ocean biogeochemical model and atmospheric CO2 tracers. The authors provide a description of the model, detail how preindustrial-control and twentieth-century experiments were initialized and forced, and examine the behavior of the carbon cycle in those experiments. They examine how sea- and land-to-air CO2 fluxes contribute to the increase of atmospheric CO2 in the twentieth century, analyze how atmospheric CO2 and its surface fluxes vary on interannual time scales, including how they respond to ENSO, and describe the seasonal cycle of atmospheric CO2 and its surface fluxes. While the model broadly reproduces observed aspects of the carbon cycle, there are several notable biases, including having too large of an increase in atmospheric CO2 over the twentieth century and too small of a seasonal cycle of atmospheric CO2 in the Northern Hemisphere. The biases are related to a weak response of the carbon cycle to climatic variations on interannual and seasonal time scales and to twentieth-century anthropogenic forcings, including rising CO2, land-use change, and atmospheric deposition of nitrogen.

Full access
A. Protat, S. A. Young, S. A. McFarlane, T. L’Ecuyer, G. G. Mace, J. M. Comstock, C. N. Long, E. Berry, and J. Delanoë

Abstract

The objective of this paper is to investigate whether estimates of the cloud frequency of occurrence and associated cloud radiative forcing as derived from ground-based and satellite active remote sensing and radiative transfer calculations can be reconciled over a well-instrumented active remote sensing site located in Darwin, Australia, despite the very different viewing geometry and instrument characteristics. It is found that the ground-based radar–lidar combination at Darwin does not detect most of the cirrus clouds above 10 km (because of limited lidar detection capability and signal obscuration by low-level clouds) and that the CloudSat radar–Cloud–Aerosol Lidar with Orthogonal Polarization (CALIOP) combination underreports the hydrometeor frequency of occurrence below 2-km height because of instrument limitations at these heights. The radiative impact associated with these differences in cloud frequency of occurrence is large on the surface downwelling shortwave fluxes (ground and satellite) and the top-of-atmosphere upwelling shortwave and longwave fluxes (ground). Good agreement is found for other radiative fluxes. Large differences in radiative heating rate as derived from ground and satellite radar–lidar instruments and radiative transfer calculations are also found above 10 km (up to 0.35 K day−1 for the shortwave and 0.8 K day−1 for the longwave). Given that the ground-based and satellite estimates of cloud frequency of occurrence and radiative impact cannot be fully reconciled over Darwin, caution should be exercised when evaluating the representation of clouds and cloud–radiation interactions in large-scale models, and limitations of each set of instrumentation should be considered when interpreting model–observation differences.

Full access
D. D. Turner, A. M. Vogelmann, R. T. Austin, J. C. Barnard, K. Cady-Pereira, J. C. Chiu, S. A. Clough, C. Flynn, M. M. Khaiyer, J. Liljegren, K. Johnson, B. Lin, C. Long, A. Marshak, S. Y. Matrosov, S. A. McFarlane, M. Miller, Q. Min, P. Minimis, W. O'Hirok, Z. Wang, and W. Wiscombe

Many of the clouds important to the Earth's energy balance, from the Tropics to the Arctic, contain small amounts of liquid water. Longwave and shortwave radiative fluxes are very sensitive to small perturbations of the cloud liquid water path (LWP), when the LWP is small (i.e., < 100 g m−2; clouds with LWP less than this threshold will be referred to as “thin”). Thus, the radiative properties of these thin liquid water clouds must be well understood to capture them correctly in climate models. We review the importance of these thin clouds to the Earth's energy balance, and explain the difficulties in observing them. In particular, because these clouds are thin, potentially mixed phase, and often broken (i.e., have large 3D variability), it is challenging to retrieve their microphysical properties accurately. We describe a retrieval algorithm intercomparison that was conducted to evaluate the issues involved. The intercomparison used data collected at the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Southern Great Plains (SGP) site and included 18 different algorithms to evaluate their retrieved LWP, optical depth, and effective radii. Surprisingly, evaluation of the simplest case, a single-layer overcast stratocumulus, revealed that huge discrepancies exist among the various techniques, even among different algorithms that are in the same general classification. This suggests that, despite considerable advances that have occurred in the field, much more work must be done, and we discuss potential avenues for future research.)

Full access
S. G. Yeager, G. Danabasoglu, N. A. Rosenbloom, W. Strand, S. C. Bates, G. A. Meehl, A. R. Karspeck, K. Lindsay, M. C. Long, H. Teng, and N. S. Lovenduski

Abstract

The objective of near-term climate prediction is to improve our fore-knowledge, from years to a decade or more in advance, of impactful climate changes that can in general be attributed to a combination of internal and externally forced variability. Predictions initialized using observations of past climate states are tested by comparing their ability to reproduce past climate evolution with that of uninitialized simulations in which the same radiative forcings are applied. A new set of decadal prediction (DP) simulations has recently been completed using the Community Earth System Model (CESM) and is now available to the community. This new large-ensemble (LE) set (CESM-DPLE) is composed of historical simulations that are integrated forward for 10 years following initialization on 1 November of each year between 1954 and 2015. CESM-DPLE represents the “initialized” counterpart to the widely studied CESM Large Ensemble (CESM-LE); both simulation sets have 40-member ensembles, and they use identical model code and radiative forcings. Comparing CESM-DPLE to CESM-LE highlights the impacts of initialization on prediction skill and indicates that robust assessment and interpretation of DP skill may require much larger ensembles than current protocols recommend. CESM-DPLE exhibits significant and potentially useful prediction skill for a wide range of fields, regions, and time scales, and it shows widespread improvement over simpler benchmark forecasts as well as over a previous initialized system that was submitted to phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5). The new DP system offers new capabilities that will be of interest to a broad community pursuing Earth system prediction research.

Open access
E. R. Westwater, Y. Han, J. B. Snider, J. H. Churnside, J. A. Shaw, M. J. Falls, C. N. Long, T. P. Ackerman, K. S. Gage, W. Ecklund, and A. Riddle

From 6 January to 28 February 1993, the second phase of the Pilot Radiation Observation Experiment (PROBE) was conducted in Kavieng, Papua New Guinea. Routine data taken during PROBE included radiosondes released every 6 h and 915-MHz Wind Profiler–Radio Acoustic Sounding System (RASS) observations of winds and temperatures. In addition, a dual-channel Microwave Water Substance Radiometer (MWSR) at 23.87 and 31.65 GHz and a Fourier Transform Infrared Radiometer (FTIR) were operated. The FTIR operated between 500 and 2000 cm−1 and measured some of the first high spectral resolution (1 cm−1) radiation data taken in the Tropics. The microwave radiometer provided continuous measurements within 30-s resolution of precipitable water vapor (PWV) and integrated cloud liquid, while the RASS measured virtual temperature profiles every 30 min. In addition, occasional lidar soundings of cloud-base heights were available. The MWSR and FTIR data taken during PROBE were compared with radiosonde data. Significant differences were noted between the MWSR and the radiosonde observations of PWV. The probability distribution of cloud liquid water was derived and is consistent with a lognormal distribution. During conditions that the MWSR did not indicate the presence of cloud liquid water, broadband long- and shortwave irradiance data were used to identify the presence of cirrus clouds or to confirm the presence of clear conditions. Comparisons are presented between measured and calculated radiance during clear conditions, using radiosonde data as input to a line-by-line Radiative Transfer Model. A case study is given of a drying event in which the PWV dropped from about 5.5 cm to a low of 3.8 cm during a 24-h period. The observations during the drying event are interpreted using PWV images obtained from data from the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program/Special Sensor Microwave/Imager and of horizontal flow measured by the wind profiler. The broadband irradiance data and the RASS soundings were also examined during the drying event.

Full access
S. Kondragunta, L. E. Flynn, A. Neuendorffer, A. J. Miller, C. Long, R. Nagatani, S. Zhou, T. Beck, E. Beach, R. McPeters, R. Stolarski, P. K. Bhartia, M. T. DeLand, and L.-K. Huang

Abstract

Ozone estimates from observations by the NOAA-16 Solar Backscattered Ultraviolet (SBUV/2) instrument and Television Infrared Observation Satellite (TIROS-N) Operational Vertical Sounder (TOVS) are used to describe the vertical structure of ozone in the anomalous 2002 polar vortex. The SBUV/2 total ozone maps show that the ozone hole was pushed off the Pole and split into two halves due to a split in the midstratospheric polar vortex in late September. The vortex split and the associated transport of high ozone from midlatitudes to the polar region reduced the ozone hole area from 18 × 106 km2 on 20 September to 3 × 106 km2 on 27 September 2002. A 23-yr time series of SBUV/2 daily zonal mean total ozone amounts between 70° and 80°S shows record high values [385 Dobson units (DU)] during the late-September 2002 warming event. The transport and descent of high ozone from low latitudes to high latitudes between 60 and 15 mb contributed to the unusual increase in total column ozone and a small ozone hole estimated using the standard criterion (area with total ozone < 220 DU). In contrast, TOVS observations show an ozone-depleted region between 0 and 24 km, indicating that ozone destruction was present in the elongated but unsplit vortex in the lower stratosphere. During the warming event, the low-ozone regions in the middle and upper stratosphere were not vertically aligned with the low-ozone regions in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere. This offset in the vertical distribution of ozone resulted in higher total column ozone masking the ozone depletion in the lower stratosphere and resulting in a smaller ozone hole size estimate from satellite total ozone data.

Full access
James W. Hurrell, M. M. Holland, P. R. Gent, S. Ghan, Jennifer E. Kay, P. J. Kushner, J.-F. Lamarque, W. G. Large, D. Lawrence, K. Lindsay, W. H. Lipscomb, M. C. Long, N. Mahowald, D. R. Marsh, R. B. Neale, P. Rasch, S. Vavrus, M. Vertenstein, D. Bader, W. D. Collins, J. J. Hack, J. Kiehl, and S. Marshall

The Community Earth System Model (CESM) is a flexible and extensible community tool used to investigate a diverse set of Earth system interactions across multiple time and space scales. This global coupled model significantly extends its predecessor, the Community Climate System Model, by incorporating new Earth system simulation capabilities. These comprise the ability to simulate biogeochemical cycles, including those of carbon and nitrogen, a variety of atmospheric chemistry options, the Greenland Ice Sheet, and an atmosphere that extends to the lower thermosphere. These and other new model capabilities are enabling investigations into a wide range of pressing scientific questions, providing new foresight into possible future climates and increasing our collective knowledge about the behavior and interactions of the Earth system. Simulations with numerous configurations of the CESM have been provided to phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) and are being analyzed by the broad community of scientists. Additionally, the model source code and associated documentation are freely available to the scientific community to use for Earth system studies, making it a true community tool. This article describes this Earth system model and its various possible configurations, and highlights a number of its scientific capabilities.

Full access