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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-186
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-186
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 06 Mar 2020

Submitted as: research article | 06 Mar 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Finely laminated Arctic mixed-phase clouds occur frequently and are correlated with snow

Emily M. McCullough1, Robin Wing2, and James R. Drummond1 Emily M. McCullough et al.
  • 1Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science, Dalhousie University, 6310 Coburg Rd., P.O. Box 15000, Halifax, NS, B3H4R2, Canada
  • 2LATMOS/IPSL, OVSQ, Sorbonne Universités, CNRS, Paris, France

Abstract. Finely laminated (multi-layer) clouds, which are strongly correlated with precipitation events, have been detected in 3.5 years of high resolution measurements of Arctic mixed-phase clouds using the Canadian Network for the Detection of Atmospheric Composition Change (CANDAC) Rayleigh-Mie-Raman lidar located at Eureka, Nunavut (79.6° N, 85.6° W).

Laminated clouds occur on 52 % of days with 24 h measurement coverage from 0–5 km altitude, and on 62 % of cloudy interpretable days. There is an average of 70 laminated cloud days detected per year, with no full year having fewer than 52 detections. Given CRL does not measure on all days of the year, it is probable that the true occurence frequency of laminated clouds at Eureka is much higher.

A study was conducted using local weather reports from the nearby Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) weather station. Days with laminated clouds are strongly correlated with snow precipitation, while days with non-laminated clouds and clear sky days are moderately anti-correlated with snow precipitation.

Emily M. McCullough et al.

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Emily M. McCullough et al.

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Latest update: 01 Apr 2020
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Short summary
Very thin (< 10 m) laminations in Arctic mixed phase clouds are detected at Eureka, Nunavut on 52 % of measured days, and 62 % of cloudy measured days during a 3.5-year study by the CANDAC Rayleigh-Mie-Raman lidar (CRL) at the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL). Precipitating snow reported by Environment and Climate Change Canada is strongly correlated with laminated clouds, and anti-correlated with non-laminated clouds, yielding constraints on precipitation formation.
Very thin ( 10 m) laminations in Arctic mixed phase clouds are detected at Eureka, Nunavut on...
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