Articles | Volume 16, issue 17
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-16-4081-2023
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-16-4081-2023
Research article
 | 
11 Sep 2023
Research article |  | 11 Sep 2023

Assessing Arctic low-level clouds and precipitation from above – a radar perspective

Imke Schirmacher, Pavlos Kollias, Katia Lamer, Mario Mech, Lukas Pfitzenmaier, Manfred Wendisch, and Susanne Crewell

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Latest update: 22 Apr 2024
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Short summary
CloudSat’s relatively coarse spatial resolution, low sensitivity, and blind zone limit its assessment of Arctic low-level clouds, which affect the surface energy balance. We compare cloud fractions from CloudSat and finely resolved airborne radar observations to determine CloudSat’s limitations. Cloudsat overestimates cloud fractions above its blind zone, especially during cold-air outbreaks over open water, and misses a cloud fraction of 32 % and half of the precipitation inside its blind zone.