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Proceedings Paper

Recent developments in the use of Doppler radar profilers for the remote sensing of precipitating clouds
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Paper Abstract

During the past decade Doppler radar profilers that operate near 1 GHz and 3 GHz have been developed at the NOAA Aeronomy Laboratory for use in dynamics and precipitation research. The profilers have been used extensively in numerous field campaigns during the past decade. In the presence of precipitating clouds, backscattering from hydrometeors is dominant and the Doppler velocity provides a measure of the fall velocity of hydrometeors. Profiler observations yield time height cross-sections of equivalent reflectivity, Doppler velocity and spectral width that illustrate the evolution of precipitating clouds systems. The vertical structure of these parameters has been used to classify the precipitating cloud systems into several different categories. These observations document the prevalence of deep anvil cloud systems over the Pacific warm pool region. They also show the relative abundance of rainfall from stratiform and convective components of precipitating cloud systems and the continuous observations reveal the diurnal evolution of the precipitating clouds over the profiler. The profiler observations provide important information for the calibration and validation of precipitation measurements by other instruments and platforms. For example, direct comparisons of profiler reflectivities with scanning radar reflectivities provide a direct means for calibration of scanning radars. The profilers are calibrated with a collocated disdrometer. An important objective of the profiler observations is to retrieve drop-size distributions and to determine the variability of the drop-size distributions in diverse precipitating cloud systems. Recent developments provide optimism that drop-size distribution retrievals can be made by profilers operating at 1 GHz or 3 GHz without complementary measurement of vertical air motions.

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 April 2003
PDF: 13 pages
Proc. SPIE 4894, Microwave Remote Sensing of the Atmosphere and Environment III, (30 April 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.466280
Show Author Affiliations
Kenneth S. Gage, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (United States)
Christopher R. Williams, Univ. of Colorado/Boulder (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4894:
Microwave Remote Sensing of the Atmosphere and Environment III
Christian D. Kummerow; JingShang Jiang; Seiho Uratuka, Editor(s)

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