Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2021-351
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2021-351

  21 Dec 2021

21 Dec 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal AMT.

Remote Sensing of solar surface radiation – A reflection of concepts, applications and input data based on experience with the effective cloud albedo

Richard Müller and Uwe Pfeifroth Richard Müller and Uwe Pfeifroth
  • DWD, Frankfurter Str. 135, Offenbach

Abstract. Accurate solar surface irradiance data (SSI) is a prerequisite for efficient planning and operation of solar energy sys- tems. Respective data are also essential for climate monitoring and analysis. Satellite-based SSI has grown in importance over the last few decades. However, a retrieval method is needed to relate the measured radiances at the satellite to the solar surface irradiance. In a widespread classical approach, these radiances are used directly to derive the effective cloud albedo (CAL) as basis for the estimation of the solar surface irradiance. This approach has been already introduced and discussed in the early 1980s. Various approaches are briefly discussed and analyzed, including an overview of open questions and opportunities for improvement. Special emphasis is placed on the reflection of fundamental physical laws and atmospheric measurement tech- niques. In addition, atmospheric input data and key applications are briefly discussed. It is concluded that the well established observational-based CAL approach is still an excellent choice for the retrieval of the cloud transmission. The coupling with Look-Up-Table based clear sky models enables the estimation of solar surface irradiance with high accuracy and homogeneity. This could explain why, despite its age, the direct CAL approach is still used by key players in energy meteorology and the climate community. For the clear sky input data it is recommended to use ECMWF forecast and reanalysis data.

Richard Müller and Uwe Pfeifroth

Status: open (until 25 Jan 2022)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on amt-2021-351', Anonymous Referee #1, 09 Jan 2022 reply
  • RC2: 'Comment on amt-2021-351', Anonymous Referee #2, 15 Jan 2022 reply

Richard Müller and Uwe Pfeifroth

Richard Müller and Uwe Pfeifroth

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Short summary
The great works of physics teach us that a central paradigm of science should be make methods and theories as easy as possible and as complex as needed. This manuscript provides a brief review of Remote Sensing of solar surface irradiance based on this paradigma.