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Pre-EUCREX Intercomparison of Airborne Humidity Measuring Instruments

J. StrömDepartment of Meteorology, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden

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R. BusenDLR Oberpfaffenhofen, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Wessling, Germany

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M. QuanteGKSS Forschungszentrum, Institut für Physik, Geesthacht, Germany

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B. GuillemetLaboratoire de Météorologie Physique, Université Blaise-Pascal, Clermont-Ferrand, France

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P. R. A. BrownU.K. Meteorological Office, Meteorological Research Flight, DRA-Farnborough, Hampshire, England

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J. HeintzenbergU.K. Meteorological Office, Meteorological Research Flight, DRA-Farnborough, Hampshire, England

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Abstract

During the pre-EUCREX (European Cloud and Radiation Experiment) intercomparison of airborne instrumentation in January 1992, nine hygrometers mounted on three different aircraft were compared. Although the different instruments are based on completely different principles and the three aircraft have very different flying characteristics, humidity data from both vertical profiles as well as horizontal flight legs showed good agreement. Despite the different aircraft limitations the intercomparison was done with the aircraft in close formation. In terms of relative difference in mixing ratio, most instruments agreed to within ±5% for values down to about 0.1 g kg−1. For mixing ratios between 0.03 and 0.1 g kg−1 most instruments agreed to within ±15%. Systematic differences between the instruments suggest that in joint experiments where data will be shared, the same algorithms for evaluating and converting humidity parameters should be used whenever possible.

Abstract

During the pre-EUCREX (European Cloud and Radiation Experiment) intercomparison of airborne instrumentation in January 1992, nine hygrometers mounted on three different aircraft were compared. Although the different instruments are based on completely different principles and the three aircraft have very different flying characteristics, humidity data from both vertical profiles as well as horizontal flight legs showed good agreement. Despite the different aircraft limitations the intercomparison was done with the aircraft in close formation. In terms of relative difference in mixing ratio, most instruments agreed to within ±5% for values down to about 0.1 g kg−1. For mixing ratios between 0.03 and 0.1 g kg−1 most instruments agreed to within ±15%. Systematic differences between the instruments suggest that in joint experiments where data will be shared, the same algorithms for evaluating and converting humidity parameters should be used whenever possible.

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