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Kevin Wolf, André Ehrlich, Mario Mech, Robin J. Hogan, and Manfred Wendisch

Abstract

A novel approach to compare airborne observations of solar spectral irradiances measured above clouds with along-track radiative transfer simulations (RTS) is presented. The irradiance measurements were obtained with the Spectral Modular Airborne Radiation Measurement System (SMART) installed on the High Altitude and Long Range Research Aircraft (HALO). The RTS were conducted using the operational ecRad radiation scheme of the Integrated Forecast System (IFS), operated by the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), and a stand-alone radiative transfer solver, the library for Radiative transfer (libRadtran). Profiles of observed and simulated radar reflectivity were provided by the HALO Microwave Package (HAMP) and the Passive and Active Microwave Transfer Model (PAMTRA), respectively. The comparison aims to investigate the capability of the two models to reproduce the observed radiation field. By analyzing spectral irradiances above clouds, different ice cloud optical parameterizations in the models were evaluated. Simulated and observed radar reflectivity fields allowed the vertical representation of the clouds modeled by the IFS to be evaluated, and enabled errors in the IFS analysis data (IFS AD) and the observations to be separated. The investigation of a North Atlantic low pressure system showed that the RTS, in combination with the IFS AD, generally reproduced the observed radiation field. For heterogeneously distributed liquid water clouds, an underestimation of upward irradiance by up to 27% was found. Simulations of ice-topped clouds, using a specific ice optics parameterization, indicated a systematic underestimation of broadband cloud-top albedo, suggesting major deficiencies in the ice optics parameterization between 1242 and 1941 nm wavelength.

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Paquita Zuidema, Julie Haggerty, Maria Cadeddu, Jorgen Jensen, Emiliano Orlandi, Mario Mech, J. Vivekanandan, and Zhien Wang
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Ingo Meirold-Mautner, Catherine Prigent, Eric Defer, Juan R. Pardo, Jean-Pierre Chaboureau, Jean-Pierre Pinty, Mario Mech, and Susanne Crewell

Abstract

Real midlatitude meteorological cases are simulated over western Europe with the cloud mesoscale model Méso-NH, and the outputs are used to calculate brightness temperatures at microwave frequencies with the Atmospheric Transmission at Microwave (ATM) radiative transfer model. Satellite-observed brightness temperatures (TBs) from the Advanced Microwave Scanning Unit B (AMSU-B) and the Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I) are compared to the simulated ones. In this paper, one specific situation is examined in detail. The infrared responses have also been calculated and compared to the Meteosat coincident observations. Overall agreement is obtained between the simulated and the observed brightness temperatures in the microwave and in the infrared. The large-scale dynamical structure of the cloud system is well captured by Méso-NH. However, in regions with large quantities of frozen hydrometeors, the comparison shows that the simulated microwave TBs are higher than the measured ones in the window channels at high frequencies, indicating that the calculation does not predict enough scattering. The factors responsible for the scattering (frozen particle distribution, calculation of particle dielectric properties, and nonsphericity of the particles) are analyzed. To assess the quality of the cloud and precipitation simulations by Méso-NH, the microphysical fields predicted by the German Lokal-Modell are also considered. Results show that in these midlatitude situations, the treatment of the snow category has a high impact on the simulated brightness temperatures. The snow scattering parameters are tuned to match the discrete dipole approximation calculations and to obtain a good agreement between simulations and observations even in the areas with significant frozen particles. Analysis of the other meteorological simulations confirms these results. Comparing simulations and observations in the microwave provides a powerful evaluation of resolved clouds in mesoscale models, especially the precipitating ice phase.

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Joseph Egger, Sapta Bajrachaya, Richard Heinrich, Philip Kolb, Stephan Lämmlein, Mario Mech, Joachim Reuder, Wolfgang Schäper, Pancha Shakya, Jan Schween, and Hilbert Wendt

Abstract

In 1998 a field campaign has been conducted in the north–south-oriented Kali Gandaki valley in Nepal to explore the structure of its extreme valley wind system. Piloted ballon (pibal) observations were made to map the strong upvalley winds as well as the weak nocturnal flows (Part I). The stratification of the valley atmosphere was not explored. In Part II of this multipart paper, numerical simulations are presented that successfully simulate most of the wind observations. Moreover, the model results suggest that the vigorous upvalley winds can be seen as supercritical flow induced by contractions of the valley. Here, the results of a further campaign are reported where remotely piloted airplanes were used to obtain vertical profiles of temperature and humidity up to heights of ∼2000 m above the ground. Such profiles are needed for an understanding of the flow dynamics in the valley and for a validation of the model results. This technique is novel in some respects and turned out to be highly reliable even under extreme conditions. In addition four automatic stations were installed along the valley's axis. Winds were observed via pibal ascents. These data complement the wind data of 1998 so that the diurnal wind system of the Kali Gandaki valley is now documented reasonably well.

It is found that the fully developed upvalley flow is confined to a turbulent layer that tends to be neutrally stratified throughout the domain of observations. The stratification above this layer is stable. A capping inversion is encountered occasionally. This finding excludes explanations of the strong winds in terms of hydraulic theories that rely on the presence of strong inversions. Pairs of simultaneous ascents separated by 5–10 km along the valley axis reveal a remarkable variability induced by the topography and, perhaps, by an instability of the flow. The analysis of the surface data as well as that of the soundings shows that the flow above the neutral layer affects the surface pressure distribution and, therefore, the acceleration of the extreme upvalley winds.

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Jean-Pierre Chaboureau, Nathalie Söhne, Jean-Pierre Pinty, Ingo Meirold-Mautner, Eric Defer, Catherine Prigent, Juan R. Pardo, Mario Mech, and Susanne Crewell

Abstract

The simulations of five midlatitude precipitating events by the nonhydrostatic mesoscale model Méso-NH are analyzed. These cases cover contrasted precipitation situations from 30° to 60°N, which are typical of midlatitudes. They include a frontal case with light precipitation over the Rhine River area (10 February 2000), a long-lasting precipitation event at Hoek van Holland, Netherlands (19 September 2001), a moderate rain case over the Elbe (12 August 2002), an intense rain case over Algiers (10 November 2001), and the “millennium storm” in the United Kingdom (30 October 2000). The physically consistent hydrometeor and thermodynamic outputs are used to generate a database for cloud and precipitation retrievals. The hydrometeor vertical profiles that were generated vary mostly with the 0°C isotherm, located between 1 and 3 km in height depending on the case. The characteristics of this midlatitude database are complementary to the GPROF database, which mostly concentrates on tropical situations. The realism of the simulations is evaluated against satellite observations by comparing synthetic brightness temperatures (BTs) with Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit (AMSU), Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I), and Meteosat observations. The good reproduction of the BT distributions by the model is exploited by calculating categorical scores for verification purposes. The comparison with 3-hourly Meteosat observations demonstrates the ability of the model to forecast the time evolution of the cloud cover, the latter being better predicted for the stratiform cases than for others. The comparison with AMSU-B measurements shows the skill of the model to predict rainfall at the correct location.

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Vinia Mattioli, Christophe Accadia, Catherine Prigent, Susanne Crewell, Alan Geer, Patrick Eriksson, Stuart Fox, Juan R. Pardo, Eli J. Mlawer, Maria Cadeddu, Michael Bremer, Carlos De Breuck, Alain Smette, Domenico Cimini, Emma Turner, Mario Mech, Frank S. Marzano, Pascal Brunel, Jerome Vidot, Ralf Bennartz, Tobias Wehr, Sabatino Di Michele, and Viju O. John
Free access
Bjorn Stevens, Felix Ament, Sandrine Bony, Susanne Crewell, Florian Ewald, Silke Gross, Akio Hansen, Lutz Hirsch, Marek Jacob, Tobias Kölling, Heike Konow, Bernhard Mayer, Manfred Wendisch, Martin Wirth, Kevin Wolf, Stephan Bakan, Matthias Bauer-Pfundstein, Matthias Brueck, Julien Delanoë, André Ehrlich, David Farrell, Marvin Forde, Felix Gödde, Hans Grob, Martin Hagen, Evelyn Jäkel, Friedhelm Jansen, Christian Klepp, Marcus Klingebiel, Mario Mech, Gerhard Peters, Markus Rapp, Allison A. Wing, and Tobias Zinner

Abstract

A configuration of the High-Altitude Long-Range Research Aircraft (HALO) as a remote sensing cloud observatory is described, and its use is illustrated with results from the first and second Next-Generation Aircraft Remote Sensing for Validation (NARVAL) field studies. Measurements from the second NARVAL (NARVAL2) are used to highlight the ability of HALO, when configured in this fashion, to characterize not only the distribution of water condensate in the atmosphere, but also its impact on radiant energy transfer and the covarying large-scale meteorological conditions—including the large-scale velocity field and its vertical component. The NARVAL campaigns with HALO demonstrate the potential of airborne cloud observatories to address long-standing riddles in studies of the coupling between clouds and circulation and are helping to motivate a new generation of field studies.

Open access
Andreas Schäfler, George Craig, Heini Wernli, Philippe Arbogast, James D. Doyle, Ron McTaggart-Cowan, John Methven, Gwendal Rivière, Felix Ament, Maxi Boettcher, Martina Bramberger, Quitterie Cazenave, Richard Cotton, Susanne Crewell, Julien Delanoë, Andreas Dörnbrack, André Ehrlich, Florian Ewald, Andreas Fix, Christian M. Grams, Suzanne L. Gray, Hans Grob, Silke Groß, Martin Hagen, Ben Harvey, Lutz Hirsch, Marek Jacob, Tobias Kölling, Heike Konow, Christian Lemmerz, Oliver Lux, Linus Magnusson, Bernhard Mayer, Mario Mech, Richard Moore, Jacques Pelon, Julian Quinting, Stephan Rahm, Markus Rapp, Marc Rautenhaus, Oliver Reitebuch, Carolyn A. Reynolds, Harald Sodemann, Thomas Spengler, Geraint Vaughan, Manfred Wendisch, Martin Wirth, Benjamin Witschas, Kevin Wolf, and Tobias Zinner

Abstract

The North Atlantic Waveguide and Downstream Impact Experiment (NAWDEX) explored the impact of diabatic processes on disturbances of the jet stream and their influence on downstream high-impact weather through the deployment of four research aircraft, each with a sophisticated set of remote sensing and in situ instruments, and coordinated with a suite of ground-based measurements. A total of 49 research flights were performed, including, for the first time, coordinated flights of the four aircraft: the German High Altitude and Long Range Research Aircraft (HALO), the Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR) Dassault Falcon 20, the French Service des Avions Français Instrumentés pour la Recherche en Environnement (SAFIRE) Falcon 20, and the British Facility for Airborne Atmospheric Measurements (FAAM) BAe 146. The observation period from 17 September to 22 October 2016 with frequently occurring extratropical and tropical cyclones was ideal for investigating midlatitude weather over the North Atlantic. NAWDEX featured three sequences of upstream triggers of waveguide disturbances, as well as their dynamic interaction with the jet stream, subsequent development, and eventual downstream weather impact on Europe. Examples are presented to highlight the wealth of phenomena that were sampled, the comprehensive coverage, and the multifaceted nature of the measurements. This unique dataset forms the basis for future case studies and detailed evaluations of weather and climate predictions to improve our understanding of diabatic influences on Rossby waves and the downstream impacts of weather systems affecting Europe.

Open access
Manfred Wendisch, Andreas Macke, André Ehrlich, Christof Lüpkes, Mario Mech, Dmitry Chechin, Klaus Dethloff, Carola Barrientos Velasco, Heiko Bozem, Marlen Brückner, Hans-Christian Clemen, Susanne Crewell, Tobias Donth, Regis Dupuy, Kerstin Ebell, Ulrike Egerer, Ronny Engelmann, Christa Engler, Oliver Eppers, Martin Gehrmann, Xianda Gong, Matthias Gottschalk, Christophe Gourbeyre, Hannes Griesche, Jörg Hartmann, Markus Hartmann, Bernd Heinold, Andreas Herber, Hartmut Herrmann, Georg Heygster, Peter Hoor, Soheila Jafariserajehlou, Evelyn Jäkel, Emma Järvinen, Olivier Jourdan, Udo Kästner, Simonas Kecorius, Erlend M. Knudsen, Franziska Köllner, Jan Kretzschmar, Luca Lelli, Delphine Leroy, Marion Maturilli, Linlu Mei, Stephan Mertes, Guillaume Mioche, Roland Neuber, Marcel Nicolaus, Tatiana Nomokonova, Justus Notholt, Mathias Palm, Manuela van Pinxteren, Johannes Quaas, Philipp Richter, Elena Ruiz-Donoso, Michael Schäfer, Katja Schmieder, Martin Schnaiter, Johannes Schneider, Alfons Schwarzenböck, Patric Seifert, Matthew D. Shupe, Holger Siebert, Gunnar Spreen, Johannes Stapf, Frank Stratmann, Teresa Vogl, André Welti, Heike Wex, Alfred Wiedensohler, Marco Zanatta, and Sebastian Zeppenfeld

Abstract

Clouds play an important role in Arctic amplification. This term represents the recently observed enhanced warming of the Arctic relative to the global increase of near-surface air temperature. However, there are still important knowledge gaps regarding the interplay between Arctic clouds and aerosol particles, and surface properties, as well as turbulent and radiative fluxes that inhibit accurate model simulations of clouds in the Arctic climate system. In an attempt to resolve this so-called Arctic cloud puzzle, two comprehensive and closely coordinated field studies were conducted: the Arctic Cloud Observations Using Airborne Measurements during Polar Day (ACLOUD) aircraft campaign and the Physical Feedbacks of Arctic Boundary Layer, Sea Ice, Cloud and Aerosol (PASCAL) ice breaker expedition. Both observational studies were performed in the framework of the German Arctic Amplification: Climate Relevant Atmospheric and Surface Processes, and Feedback Mechanisms (AC) project. They took place in the vicinity of Svalbard, Norway, in May and June 2017. ACLOUD and PASCAL explored four pieces of the Arctic cloud puzzle: cloud properties, aerosol impact on clouds, atmospheric radiation, and turbulent dynamical processes. The two instrumented Polar 5 and Polar 6 aircraft; the icebreaker Research Vessel (R/V) Polarstern; an ice floe camp including an instrumented tethered balloon; and the permanent ground-based measurement station at Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard, were employed to observe Arctic low- and mid-level mixed-phase clouds and to investigate related atmospheric and surface processes. The Polar 5 aircraft served as a remote sensing observatory examining the clouds from above by downward-looking sensors; the Polar 6 aircraft operated as a flying in situ measurement laboratory sampling inside and below the clouds. Most of the collocated Polar 5/6 flights were conducted either above the R/V Polarstern or over the Ny-Ålesund station, both of which monitored the clouds from below using similar but upward-looking remote sensing techniques as the Polar 5 aircraft. Several of the flights were carried out underneath collocated satellite tracks. The paper motivates the scientific objectives of the ACLOUD/PASCAL observations and describes the measured quantities, retrieved parameters, and the applied complementary instrumentation. Furthermore, it discusses selected measurement results and poses critical research questions to be answered in future papers analyzing the data from the two field campaigns.

Open access