Evaluation of cloud base height measurements from Ceilometer CL31 and MODIS satellite over Ahmedabad, India
Abstract. Clouds play a tangible role in the Earth's atmosphere and in particular, the cloud base height (CBH), which is linked to cloud type, is one of the most important characteristics to describe the influence of clouds on the environment. In the present study, CBH observations from Ceilometer CL31 were extensively studied during May 2013 to January 2015 over Ahmedabad (23.03° N, 72.54° E), India. A detailed comparison has been performed with the use of ground-based CBH measurements from Ceilometer CL31 and CBH retrieved from MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) onboard Aqua and Terra satellite. CBH retrieved from MODIS is ∼ 1.955 and ∼ 1.093 km on 25 July 2014 and 1 January 2015 respectively, which matches well with ceilometer-measured CBH ( ∼ 1.92 and ∼ 1.097 km). Some interesting features of cloud dynamics viz. strong downdraft and updraft have been observed over Ahmedabad which revealed different cloud characteristics during monsoon and post-monsoon periods. CBH shows seasonal variation during the Indian summer monsoon and post-monsoon period. Results indicate that the ceilometer is an excellent instrument to precisely detect low- and mid-level clouds, and the MODIS satellite provides accurate retrieval of high-level clouds over this region. The CBH algorithm used for the MODIS satellite is also able to capture the low-level clouds.