Parameterization of the Extinction Coefficient in Ice and Mixed-Phase Arctic Clouds during the ISDAC Field Campaign

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This report documents the history of attempts to directly measure cloud extinction, the current measurement device known as the Cloud Extinction Probe (CEP), specific problems with direct measurement of extinction coefficient, and the attempts made here to address these problems. Extinction coefficient is one of the fundamental microphysical parameters characterizing bulk properties of clouds. Knowledge of extinction coefficient is of crucial importance for radiative transfer calculations in weather prediction and climate models given that Earth's radiation budget (ERB) is modulated much by clouds. In order for a large-scale model to properly account for ERB and perturbations to it, it must ... continued below

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Korolev, A; Shashkov, A & Barker, H March 6, 2012.

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Description

This report documents the history of attempts to directly measure cloud extinction, the current measurement device known as the Cloud Extinction Probe (CEP), specific problems with direct measurement of extinction coefficient, and the attempts made here to address these problems. Extinction coefficient is one of the fundamental microphysical parameters characterizing bulk properties of clouds. Knowledge of extinction coefficient is of crucial importance for radiative transfer calculations in weather prediction and climate models given that Earth's radiation budget (ERB) is modulated much by clouds. In order for a large-scale model to properly account for ERB and perturbations to it, it must ultimately be able to simulate cloud extinction coefficient well. In turn this requires adequate and simultaneous simulation of profiles of cloud water content and particle habit and size. Similarly, remote inference of cloud properties requires assumptions to be made about cloud phase and associated single-scattering properties, of which extinction coefficient is crucial. Hence, extinction coefficient plays an important role in both application and validation of methods for remote inference of cloud properties from data obtained from both satellite and surface sensors (e.g., Barker et al. 2008). While estimation of extinction coefficient within large-scale models is relatively straightforward for pure water droplets, thanks to Mie theory, mixed-phase and ice clouds still present problems. This is because of the myriad forms and sizes that crystals can achieve, each having their own unique extinction properties. For the foreseeable future, large-scale models will have to be content with diagnostic parametrization of crystal size and type. However, before they are able to provide satisfactory values needed for calculation of radiative transfer, they require the intermediate step of assigning single-scattering properties to particles. The most basic of these is extinction coefficient, yet it is rarely measured directly, and therefore verification of parametrizations is difficult. The obvious solution is to be able to measure microphysical properties and extinction at the same time and for the same volume. This is best done by in situ sampling by instruments mounted on either balloon or aircraft. The latter is the usual route and the one employed here. Yet the problem of actually measuring extinction coefficient directly for arbitrarily complicated particles still remains unsolved.

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  • Report No.: DOE/SC-ARM-TR-105
  • Grant Number: DE-AC05-7601830
  • DOI: 10.2172/1035864 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1035864
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc833677

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  • March 6, 2012

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  • May 19, 2016, 3:16 p.m.

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  • Aug. 3, 2016, 4:14 p.m.

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Korolev, A; Shashkov, A & Barker, H. Parameterization of the Extinction Coefficient in Ice and Mixed-Phase Arctic Clouds during the ISDAC Field Campaign, report, March 6, 2012; Richland, Washington. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc833677/: accessed July 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.