Planetary boundary layer and precipitation studies using lower atmospheric wind profiler over tropical India



[1] For the first time in India, an L-band (1357.5 MHz) lower atmospheric wind profiler (LAWP) has been installed and successfully operated at Gadanki, India, since September 1997. The first results of the accuracy can be given on the basis of about 24-day intercomparisons between LAWP and mesosphere-stratosphere-troposphere radar data. The root-mean-square differences (RMS deviation) have been found to range between 1.18 m/s and 1.6 m/s for the wind speed. The two wind profilers compliment each other quite well, considering both the availability and the reliability of the wind measurements. Statistics of the data availability can be shown based on 775 days of data in low mode and about 532 days of data in high mode. The 80% availability of the LAWP was determined with 3.6-km wind measurements in low mode and 5-km wind measurements in high mode. LAWP observations show well-marked planetary boundary layer diurnal variation on clear sunny days. We found that with a few exceptions the drier period has a higher boundary layer compared with the wet period, indicating that in the wet season, most of the net solar radiation evaporated moisture rather than heating the surface and therefore contributed little to buoyant forcing. We classified precipitating clouds into three types: convective, transition, and stratiform. Diurnal and seasonal variation of the occurrence of precipitating cloud systems shows that the precipitation primarily occurs in the afternoon and the convective and transition clouds are most frequent in the summer monsoon, while the occurrence of stratiform clouds is predominant in the winter monsoon.