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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 5, issue 11
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 5, 2625–2633, 2012
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-5-2625-2012
© Author(s) 2012. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 5, 2625–2633, 2012
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-5-2625-2012
© Author(s) 2012. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 05 Nov 2012

Research article | 05 Nov 2012

Fall speed measurement and high-resolution multi-angle photography of hydrometeors in free fall

T. J. Garrett1, C. Fallgatter1, K. Shkurko1, and D. Howlett2 T. J. Garrett et al.
  • 1Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
  • 2Alta Center for Snow Science, Alta, Utah, USA

Abstract. We describe here a new instrument for imaging hydrometeors in free fall. The Multi-Angle Snowflake Camera (MASC) captures high-resolution photographs of hydrometeors from three angles while simultaneously measuring their fall speed. Based on the stereoscopic photographs captured over the two months of continuous measurements obtained at a high altitude location within the Wasatch Front in Utah, we derive statistics for fall speed, hydrometeor size, shape, orientation and aspect ratio. From a selection of the photographed hydrometeors, an illustration is provided for how the instrument might be used for making improved microwave scattering calculations. Complex, aggregated snowflake shapes appear to be more strongly forward scattering, at the expense of reduced back-scatter, than heavily rimed graupel particles of similar size.

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