Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres

Cross-validation of MIPAS/ENVISAT and GPS-RO/CHAMP temperature profiles



[1] The Michelson Interferometer for Passive Atmospheric Sounding (MIPAS) on board the ENVISAT and the Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver on the Challenging Mini-Satellite Payload (CHAMP) provide temperature profiles by limb-viewing midinfrared emission and radio occultation (RO) measurements, respectively. The MIPAS temperatures retrieved at the Institut für Meteorologie und Klimaforschung (IMK) are compared with the GPS-RO/CHAMP observations derived at Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and GeoForschungsZentrum (GFZ) Potsdam. The three data sets show generally good agreement. The global mean differences averaged between 8 and 30 km in 14 days of September/October 2002 are −0.44 ± 0.02 K and 0.07 ± 0.02 K for MIPAS/GPS-RO JPL and GFZ comparisons, respectively. The MIPAS global mean temperatures below 25 km are slightly lower than those of GPS-RO JPL and GFZ by less than 1 K and 0.2 K, respectively. Above 25 km, the MIPAS temperatures are higher than the JPL and GFZ data, in particular near both poles and the equator, with maxima of 1 K for JPL and 1.5 K for GFZ at 30 km. The standard deviations are ∼2–4 K. Possible explanations for the observed differences include (1) effect of spatial and temporal mismatch between the correlative measurements on the observed standard deviations, in particular in regions and episodes of enhanced wave activity; (2) a negative bias in GPS-RO/CHAMP temperatures in regions of increased humidity; (3) a mapping of initialization temperature profiles on GPS-RO/CHAMP retrievals at altitudes where low refraction contains no information on air density; and (4) measurement errors of both instruments, particularly the errors due to insufficient knowledge of the instrument line shape and spectroscopy in current MIPAS retrievals.