Systematic and random errors between collocated satellite ice water path observations

Authors

  • S. Eliasson,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Division of Space Technology, Luleå University of Technology, Kiruna, Sweden
    • Corresponding author: S. Eliasson, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Division of Space Technology, Luleå University of Technology, Kiruna, Sweden. (salomon.eliasson@gmail.com)

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  • G. Holl,

    1. Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Division of Space Technology, Luleå University of Technology, Kiruna, Sweden
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  • S. A. Buehler,

    1. Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Division of Space Technology, Luleå University of Technology, Kiruna, Sweden
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  • T. Kuhn,

    1. Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Division of Space Technology, Luleå University of Technology, Kiruna, Sweden
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  • M. Stengel,

    1. Satellite Application Facility on Climate Monitoring, Deutscher Wetterdienst, Offenbach, Germany
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  • F. Iturbide-Sanchez,

    1. I. M. Systems Group, Inc., National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/National Environment Satellite, Data and Information Service/Center for Satellite Applications and Research, Camp Springs, Maryland, USA
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  • M. Johnston

    1. Department of Earth and Space Sciences, Chalmers University of Technology, Göteborg, Sweden
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Abstract

[1] There remains large disagreement between ice-water path (IWP) in observational data sets, largely because the sensors observe different parts of the ice particle size distribution. A detailed comparison of retrieved IWP from satellite observations in the Tropics (±30° latitude) in 2007 was made using collocated measurements. The radio detection and ranging(radar)/light detection and ranging (lidar) (DARDAR) IWP data set, based on combined radar/lidar measurements, is used as a reference because it provides arguably the best estimate of the total column IWP. For each data set, usable IWP dynamic ranges are inferred from this comparison. IWP retrievals based on solar reflectance measurements, in the moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS), advanced very high resolution radiometer–based Climate Monitoring Satellite Applications Facility (CMSAF), and Pathfinder Atmospheres-Extended (PATMOS-x) datasets, were found to be correlated with DARDAR over a large IWP range (~20–7000 g m-2). The random errors of the collocated data sets have a close to lognormal distribution, and the combined random error of MODIS and DARDAR is less than a factor of 2, which also sets the upper limit for MODIS alone. In the same way, the upper limit for the random error of all considered data sets is determined. Data sets based on passive microwave measurements, microwave surface and precipitation products system (MSPPS), microwave integrated retrieval system (MiRS), and collocated microwave only (CMO), are largely correlated with DARDAR for IWP values larger than approximately 700 g m-2. The combined uncertainty between these data sets and DARDAR in this range is slightly less MODIS-DARDAR, but the systematic bias is nearly an order of magnitude.

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