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Simulation of atmospheric profile retrieval from hyperspectral infrared data under cloudy conditions

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In this paper, simulated space-based high spectral resolution AIRS (Atmospheric Infrared Sounder) infrared radiances with different cloud top heights and effective cloud fractions are used to demonstrate measurement sensitivity and atmospheric profile retrieval performance. Simulated cloudy retrievals of atmospheric temperature and moisture derived from the statistical eigenvector regression algorithm are analysed with different effective cloud fractions and different cloud heights. The results show that knowledge of cloud height is critical to sounding retrieval performance and the root mean square error of retrieved temperature and the mixed ratio of water vapour below the cloud top increases with effective cloud fraction. When there is 50 hPa error in the cloud height the retrieval accuracy of temperature and humidity decrease, compared with when the cloud height is known perfectly; the temperature retrieval is more sensitive to cloud height error than humidity retrieval. Collocated cloudy AIRS and the associated clear MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) infrared observations within the AIRS field of view (FOV) are also used to demonstrate profile retrieval improvement below the cloud layer. It is demonstrated that using collocated clear MODIS multispectral imager data along with AIRS high spectral resolution infrared radiances can greatly improve the single FOV cloudy retrieval even under opaque cloudy conditions.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01431160903475233

Affiliations: 1: Key Laboratory of Meteorological Disaster of Ministry of Education, Nanjing University of Information Science & Technology, Nanjing, PR, China 2: Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1225 West Dayton Street, Madison, Wisconsin, USA

Publication date: January 1, 2011

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