Precipitable Water Estimation from High-Resolution Split Window Radiance Measurements

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  • 1 Earth Science and Applications Division, NASA-Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Alabama
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Abstract

A technique that uses the spatial variance of image brightness temperature to derive total column Precipitable water is applied to high-resolution multispectral aircraft scanner data for the 19 June 1986 COHMEX day. The technique has several advantages over other approaches in that it requires only relative calibration accuracy, is less susceptible to instrument error, and does not directly use a priori information. Results indicate significant horizontal variability of precipitable water at the mesoscale. Precipitable water gradients of 6 mm per 10 km are not uncommon. The results verify well against special rawinsonde measurements and the ensuing cloud field development. While only applied to this specialized aircraft data, the applicability of the technique to operational AVHRR and VAS data is discussed.

Abstract

A technique that uses the spatial variance of image brightness temperature to derive total column Precipitable water is applied to high-resolution multispectral aircraft scanner data for the 19 June 1986 COHMEX day. The technique has several advantages over other approaches in that it requires only relative calibration accuracy, is less susceptible to instrument error, and does not directly use a priori information. Results indicate significant horizontal variability of precipitable water at the mesoscale. Precipitable water gradients of 6 mm per 10 km are not uncommon. The results verify well against special rawinsonde measurements and the ensuing cloud field development. While only applied to this specialized aircraft data, the applicability of the technique to operational AVHRR and VAS data is discussed.

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