Articles | Volume 7, issue 11
Research article
25 Nov 2014
Research article |  | 25 Nov 2014

Improving HelioClim-3 estimates of surface solar irradiance using the McClear clear-sky model and recent advances in atmosphere composition

Z. Qu, B. Gschwind, M. Lefevre, and L. Wald

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Decoupling the effects of clear atmosphere and clouds to simplify calculations of the broadband solar irradiance at ground level
A. Oumbe, Z. Qu, P. Blanc, M. Lefèvre, L. Wald, and S. Cros
Geosci. Model Dev., 7, 1661–1669,,, 2014
McClear: a new model estimating downwelling solar radiation at ground level in clear-sky conditions
M. Lefèvre, A. Oumbe, P. Blanc, B. Espinar, B. Gschwind, Z. Qu, L. Wald, M. Schroedter-Homscheidt, C. Hoyer-Klick, A. Arola, A. Benedetti, J. W. Kaiser, and J.-J. Morcrette
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 6, 2403–2418,,, 2013

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Subject: Others (Wind, Precipitation, Temperature, etc.) | Technique: Remote Sensing | Topic: Validation and Intercomparisons
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Cited articles

Benedetti, A., Kaiser, J. W., and Morcrette, J.-J.: Global Climate, Aerosols in: State of the Climate in 2010, Bull. Am. Meteorol. Soc., 92, S65–S67, 2011.
Blanc, P., Gschwind, B., Lefevre, M., and Wald, L.: The HelioClim project: Surface solar irradiance data for climate applications, Remote Sens., 3, 343–361,, 2011.
Elias, T. and Roujean, J.-L.: Estimation of the aerosol radiative forcing at ground level, over land, and in cloudless atmosphere, from METEOSAT-7 observation: method and case study, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 8, 625–636,, 2008.
GCOS: Global Climate Observing System Essential Climate Variables, available at:, last access: 20 September 2013.
Geiger, M., Diabate, L., Menard, L., and Wald, L.: A web service for controlling the quality of measurements of global solar irradiation, Sol. Energy, 73, 475–480,, 2002.
Short summary
The HelioClim-3 database (HC3v3) provides records of surface solar irradiation every 15 min estimated by processing images from the geostationary meteorological Meteosat satellites using climatological data sets of atmospheric properties. A method is proposed to improve a posteriori HC3v3 by combining it with data records of advanced global aerosol property forecasts and physically consistent total column content in water vapour and ozone produced by the MACC projects.