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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-565
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-565
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 15 Jul 2019

Submitted as: research article | 15 Jul 2019

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This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).

Variability of cirrus cloud properties using a PollyXT Raman Lidar over high and tropical latitudes

Kalliopi Artemis Voudouri1, Elina Giannakaki2,3, Mika Komppula3, and Dimitris Balis1 Kalliopi Artemis Voudouri et al.
  • 1Laboratory of Atmospheric Physics, Physics Department, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece
  • 2Department of Environmental Physics and Meteorology, Faculty of Physics, University of Athens, Greece
  • 3Finnish Meteorological Institute, P.O. Box 1627, FI-70211, Kuopio, Finland

Abstract. Measurements of cirrus clouds geometrical and optical properties, performed with a multi-wavelength PollyXT Raman Lidar, during the period 2008 to 2016 are analysed. The measurements were performed with the same instrument, during sequential periods, in three places at different latitudes, Gual Pahari (28.43° N, 77.15° E, 243 m a.s.l) in India, Elandsfontein (26.25° S, 29.43° E, 1745 m a.s.l) in South Africa and Kuopio (62.74° N, 27.54° E, 190 m a.s.l) in Finland. The lidar dataset has been processed by an automatic cirrus cloud detection algorithm. In the following, we present a statistical analysis of the lidar derived geometrical characteristics (cloud boundaries, geometrical thickness) and optical properties of cirrus clouds (cloud optical depth, lidar ratio, ice crystal depolarization ratio) measured in different latitudes that correspond to subtropical and subarctic regions as well as their seasonal variability. The effect of multiple-scattering from ice particles to the derived optical products is also considered and corrected in this study. Our results show that, over the subtropical stations, cirrus layers, which have a noticeable monthly variability, were observed between 7 to 13 km, with mid-cloud temperatures ranging from −60 °C to −21 °C and a mean thickness of 1295 ± 489 m and 1383 ± 735 m for Gual Pahari and Elandsfontein respectively. The corresponding overall mean cirrus optical depth at 355 nm is calculated to be 0.59 ± 0.39 and 0.40 ± 0.33, with lidar ratio values at 355 nm of 26 ± 12 sr and 25 ± 6 sr, respectively. A more extended dataset was acquired for the subarctic area of Kuopio Finland, between 2012 and 2016. The estimated average geometrical thickness of the cirrus clouds over Kuopio is 1200 ± 585 m and the temperature values vary from −71 °C to −21 °C, while the mean cirrus optical depth at 355 nm is 0.25 ± 0.2, with an estimated mean lidar ratio of 33 ± 7 sr, similar to the idar ratio values observed over middle latitude stations. The kind of information presented here can be rather useful in the cirrus parameterizations required as input to radiative transfer models, and can be a complementary tool to satellite products that cannot provide cloud vertical structure. In addition, a ground-based statistics of the cirrus properties could be useful in the validation and improvement of the corresponding derived products from satellite retrievals.

Kalliopi Artemis Voudouri et al.
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Short summary
In this manuscript we present the variability of cirrus cloud properties using a PollyXT Raman Lidar over high and tropical latitudes. The kind of information presented here can be rather useful in the cirrus parameterizations required as input to radiative transfer models, and can be a complementary tool to satellite products that cannot provide cloud vertical structure.
In this manuscript we present the variability of cirrus cloud properties using a PollyXT Raman...
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