Articles | Volume 9, issue 7
Research article
21 Jul 2016
Research article |  | 21 Jul 2016

Remote sensing of tropospheric turbulence using GPS radio occultation

Esayas Shume and Chi Ao

Abstract. Radio occultation (RO) measurements are sensitive to the small-scale irregularities in the atmosphere. In this study, we present a new technique to estimate tropospheric turbulence strength (namely, scintillation index) by analyzing RO amplitude fluctuations in impact parameter domain. GPS RO observations from the COSMIC (Constellation Observing System for Meteorology, Ionosphere, and Climate) satellites enabled us to calculate global maps of scintillation measures, revealing the seasonal, latitudinal, and longitudinal characteristics of the turbulent troposphere. Such information are both difficult and expensive to obtain especially over the oceans. To verify our approach, simulation experiments using the multiple phase screen (MPS) method were conducted. The results show that scintillation indices inferred from the MPS simulations are in good agreement with scintillation measures estimated from COSMIC observations.