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Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2017-1134
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
12 Jan 2018
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).
Assessing the impact of the Kuroshio Current on vertical cloud structure using CloudSat data
Akira Yamauchi1, Kazuaki Kawamoto1, Atsuyoshi Manda1,2, and Jiming Li3 1School of Fisheries Science and Environmental Sciences, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan
2Earth and Environmental Sciences Division, Graduate School of Bioresources, Mie University, Mie, Japan
3Key Laboratory for Semi-Arid Climate Change of the Ministry of Education, College of Atmospheric Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou, China
Abstract. This study analysed CloudSat satellite data to determine how the warm ocean Kuroshio Current affects the vertical structure of clouds. Rainfall intensity around the middle troposphere (6 km in height) over the Kuroshio was greater than that over surrounding areas. The drizzle clouds over the Kuroshio have a higher frequency of occurrence of geometrically thin (0.5–3 km) clouds and thicker (7–10 km) clouds compared to those around the Kuroshio. Moreover, the frequency of occurrence of precipitating clouds with a geometric thickness of 7 to 10 km increased over the Kuroshio. Stronger updraft over the Kuroshio maintains large droplets higher in the upper part of the cloud layer, and the maximum radar reflectivity within a cloud layer in non-precipitating and drizzle clouds over the Kuroshio is higher than that around the Kuroshio.

Citation: Yamauchi, A., Kawamoto, K., Manda, A., and Li, J.: Assessing the impact of the Kuroshio Current on vertical cloud structure using CloudSat data, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2017-1134, in review, 2018.
Akira Yamauchi et al.
Akira Yamauchi et al.
Akira Yamauchi et al.

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Short summary
As a key component of the climate system, clouds have a significant influence on hydrological cycles and energy budgets. This study clarified the effects of sea surface temperature changes in the Kuroshio Current on the vertical structure of clouds (rainfall intensity, cloud geometrical thickness, and maximum radar reflectivity position) using CloudSat products. The Kuroshio influences not only the dynamical processes of the lower layer of the atmosphere but also the properties inside clouds.
As a key component of the climate system, clouds have a significant influence on hydrological...
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