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Xu G.,Institute of Heavy Rain | Ware R.S.,Radiometrics | Zhang W.,Institute of Heavy Rain | Feng G.,Institute of Heavy Rain | And 2 more authors.
Atmospheric Research | Year: 2014

Microwave radiometers (MWRs) can be useful for the detection of mesoscale phenomena because they provide thermodynamic profiles in a minute time scale. These profiles are mainly used in non-precipitation conditions due to degraded accuracy of the MWR measurements in precipitation. Recently, Radiometrics Corporation used proprietary neural network methods to retrieve temperature, humidity and liquid profiles from off-zenith (15° elevation) radiometer observations to provide higher accuracy during precipitation. In this paper, using the MWR-retrieved temperature and humidity profiles with collocated radiosondes from June 2010 to September 2013 in Wuhan, the impact of precipitation on the MWR measurement accuracy as well as the effect of off-zenith neural network methods on it is investigated. In precipitation, the correlation coefficients of the MWR temperature and vapor density profiles against radiosondes are smaller than those in non-precipitation, and the bias and RMS against radiosondes also increase, especially around 2km heights. For the MWR relative humidity profile, the correlation coefficient in precipitation is obvious smaller than that in non-precipitation below 4.5km, and the bias and RMS against radiosondes are clearly larger above 5.5km. Moreover, the differences between the precipitation and non-precipitation cases mostly are statistically significant. Compared with the results of the zenith observation, the off-zenith observation makes a positive effect on reducing the impact of precipitation on the accuracy of MWR temperature and vapor density retrievals. On the whole, the MWR temperature bias and RMS against radiosondes in precipitation are reduced from 3.6 and 4.2K to 1.3 and 3.1K, respectively, and the MWR vapor density bias is also reduced from 1.10g/m3 to 0.18g/m3 with the RMS decreasing from 2.90g/m3 to 1.91g/m3. The temperature correlation coefficient between the MWR and radiosonde in precipitation is clearly improved above 3km heights, and the temperature bias and RMS are significantly reduced at most heights. For the MWR vapor density retrievals in precipitation, the correlation coefficient, bias and RMS against radiosondes are clearly improved above 2km heights. Additionally, the off-zenith observations during non-precipitation cases are also better compared to zenith observations. Therefore, off-zenith observations generally are better than zenith observations. This could be due to the fact that the off-zenith observations are more representative of the conditions in which radiosonde observations are also taken. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.

Ware R.,Radiometrics | Ware R.,U.S. National Center for Atmospheric Research | Ware R.,Cooperative Institute for Research in the Environmental science | Cimini D.,University of LAquila | And 9 more authors.
Atmospheric Research | Year: 2013

Tropospheric observations by a microwave profiling radiometer and six-hour radiosondes were obtained during the Alpine Venue of the 2010 Winter Olympic Games at Whistler, British Columbia, by Environment Canada. The radiometer provided continuous temperature, humidity and liquid (water) profiles during all weather conditions including rain, sleet and snow. Gridded analysis was provided by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. We compare more than two weeks of radiometer neural network and radiosonde temperature and humidity soundings including clear and precipitating conditions. Corresponding radiometer liquid and radiosonde wind soundings are shown. Close correlation is evident between radiometer and radiosonde temperature and humidity profiles up to 10. km height and among southwest winds, liquid water and upper level thermodynamics, consistent with up-valley advection and condensation of moist maritime air. We compare brightness temperatures observed by the radiometer and forward-modeled from radiosonde and gridded analysis. Radiosonde-equivalent observation accuracy is demonstrated for radiometer neural network temperature and humidity retrievals up to 800. m height and for variational retrievals that combine radiometer and gridded analysis up to 10. km height. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

Cimini D.,CNR Institute of Methodologies for Environmental analysis | Cimini D.,University of LAquila | Nelson M.,Radiometrics | Guldner J.,DWD | Ware R.,Radiometrics
Atmospheric Measurement Techniques | Year: 2015

Today, commercial microwave radiometer profilers (MWRPs) are robust and unattended instruments providing real-time, accurate atmospheric observations at ∼ 1 min temporal resolution under nearly all weather conditions. Common commercial units operate in the 20-60 GHz frequency range and are able to retrieve profiles of temperature, vapour density, and relative humidity. Temperature and humidity profiles retrieved from MWRP data are used here to feed tools developed for processing radiosonde observations to obtain values of forecast indices (FIs) commonly used in operational meteorology. The FIs considered here include K index, total totals, KO index, Showalter index, T1 gust, fog threat, lifted index, S index (STT), Jefferson index, microburst day potential index (MDPI), Thompson index, TQ index, and CAPE (convective available potential energy). Values of FIs computed from radiosonde and MWRP-retrieved temperature and humidity profiles are compared in order to quantitatively demonstrate the level of agreement and the value of continuous FI updates. This analysis is repeated for two sites at midlatitude, the first one located at low altitude in central Europe (Lindenberg, Germany) and the second one located at high altitude in North America (Whistler, Canada). It is demonstrated that FIs computed from MWRPs well correlate with those computed from radiosondes, with the additional advantage of nearly continuous updates. The accuracy of MWRP-derived FIs is tested against radiosondes, taken as a reference, showing different performances depending upon index and environmental situation. Overall, FIs computed from MWRP retrievals agree well with radiosonde values, with correlation coefficients usually above 0.8 (with few exceptions). We conclude that MWRP retrievals can be used to produce meaningful FIs, with the advantage (with respect to radiosondes) of nearly continuous updates. © Author(s) 2015.

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