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Olivier Hautecoeur and Régis Borde

Abstract

Atmospheric motion vectors (AMVs) are derived operationally at EUMETSAT from the AVHRR/3 instrument on the Polar System satellite MetOp-A since 2011. The launch of MetOp-B in 2012 allowed for doubling of the production of AMVs over the polar regions using both MetOp-A and MetOp-B satellite data. In addition to the single AVHRR polar wind product, in 2014 EUMETSAT developed a new global AVHRR wind product extracted from a pair of MetOp-A and MetOp-B images. This new product is extracted using the large overlap in the imagery data obtained from the tandem configuration of the two satellites on the same orbital plane but with a phase difference of about 50 min. The tandem configuration also provides the possibility to derive wind vectors over polar areas using a triplet of AVHRR images, keeping the same time period necessary to derive the single MetOp polar wind product but allowing for a temporal consistency check in the calculation of the AMV quality index. Three different AMV products are currently extracted from AVHRR imagery at EUMETSAT, using two or three images taken by one or two satellites having different coverage and time integration.

This paper describes the scientific concept of the AVHRR wind extraction algorithm developed at EUMETSAT and presents the performances of the various AVHRR wind products. Intercomparisons of these different products highlight the role of the temporal gap between the images used to extract the wind and the impact of the consistency check on the calculation of the quality index.

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Régis Borde, Olivier Hautecoeur, and Manuel Carranza

Abstract

EUMETSAT has been deriving atmospheric motion vectors (AMV) operationally from the EUMETSAT Polar System satellite MetOp over polar regions since 2011. The launch of MetOp-B in 2012 permitted doubling the frequency of extracting AMVs using AVHRR imagery data of both MetOp-A and -B satellites. The tandem configuration with two satellites on the same orbital plane, but with a phase difference, provided an interesting opportunity to create global AMVs from the satellites with a significant overlap in imagery data. EUMETSAT has therefore developed a new global AVHRR winds product derived from a pair of MetOp-A and MetOp-B images that has been operational since January 2015. The temporal gap between the two images used for tracking clouds is about 50 min. The global coverage of this new wind product allows for a homogeneous retrieval of wind product over the whole globe, including the polar regions. This clearly helps fill the gaps between 55° and 70° latitude north and south, where only few wind observations are currently available for assimilation into numerical weather prediction models. The new global AVHRR wind product can be directly compared with AMVs derived from geostationary satellites. This paper describes the scientific concept of wind extraction using dual MetOp satellites. It highlights the performance of the new global AVHRR wind product by comparing with collocated AMVs extracted from the EUMETSAT geostationary satellites Meteosat-7 and Meteosat-10.

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Ákos Horváth, Olivier Hautecoeur, Régis Borde, Hartwig Deneke, and Stefan A. Buehler

Abstract

The European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT) MetOp-A and MetOp-B satellites fly in the same polar orbit with a 180° phase difference, which enables the global retrieval of atmospheric motion vectors (AMVs, or “winds”) by tracking clouds in a pair of Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) infrared-window-channel images taken successively by the tandem platforms within their swath overlap area. This novel global wind product has been operational since 2015. As part of ongoing validation efforts, two months of MetOp global AMVs were compared with a suite of independent wind data, including AMVs from geostationary and polar-orbiter satellites as well as radiosonde and model winds. The performance of the new wind product is generally comparable to that of more established satellite winds. In the tropics, however, high-level MetOp global AMVs show a strong fast speed bias, increased root-mean-square difference, and considerably reduced speed correlation relative to all comparison datasets—an as-yet-unexplained drop in retrieval quality that warrants further investigation. A best-fit wind analysis also indicates that selectively applied height adjustments, such as cloud-base and inversion methods, can be a significant source of discrepancy, leading to very poor height correlation among low-level satellite AMVs. Height assignment is more consistent and better correlated at mid- to high levels, although MetOp heights derived from window-channel brightness temperatures have a bias toward lower heights because of the lack of semitransparency corrections. Collocated Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer CO2-slicing heights significantly improve the best-fit height-difference statistics at higher altitudes but are available for only ~5% of MetOp AMVs.

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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 US (NOAA) and provides the service in the mid-morning 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 GRAS instruments. The paper gives an overview on the system, 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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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.

Full access