Comparison of POLDER cloud phase retrievals to active remote sensors measurements at the ARM SGP site



In our present study, cloud boundaries derived from a combination of active remote sensors at the ARM SGP site are compared to POLDER cloud top phase index which is derived from polarimetric measurements using an innovative method. This approach shows the viability of the POLDER phase retrieval algorithm, and also leads to interesting results. In particular, the analysis demonstrates the sensitivity of polarization measurements to ice crystal shape and indicates that occurrence of polycrystalline ice clouds has to be taken into account in order to improve the POLDER phase retrieval algorithm accuracy. Secondly, the results show that a temperature threshold of 240 K could serve for cloud top particle phase classification. Considering the limitations of the analysis, the temperature threshold could be biased high, but not by more than about 5 degrees.