Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2021-381
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2021-381

  25 Nov 2021

25 Nov 2021

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

On the derivation of zonal and meridional wind components from Aeolus horizontal line-of-sight wind

Isabell Krisch1, Neil P. Hindley2, Oliver Reitebuch1, and Corwin J. Wright2 Isabell Krisch et al.
  • 1Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V. (DLR), Institut für Physik der Atmosphäre, Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany
  • 2Centre for Space, Atmospheric and Oceanic Science, University of Bath, UK

Abstract. Since its launch in 2018, the European Space Agency’s Earth Explorer satellite Aeolus has provided global height resolved measurements of horizontal wind in the troposphere and lower stratosphere for the first time. Novel datasets such as these provide an unprecedented opportunity for the research of atmospheric dynamics and provide new insights into the dynamics of the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere (UTLS) region. Aeolus measures the wind component along its horizontal line-of-sight, but for the analysis and interpretation of atmospheric dynamics, zonal and/or meridional wind components are most useful. In this paper, we introduce and compare three different methods to derive zonal and meridional wind components from the Aeolus wind measurements. We find that the most promising method involves combining Aeolus measurements during ascending and descending orbits. Using this method, we derive global estimates of the zonal wind in the latitude range 79.7° S to 84.5° N with errors of less than 5 ms−1 (at the 2-sigma level). Due to the orbit geometry of Aeolus, the estimation of meridional wind in the tropics and at midlatitudes is more challenging and the quality is less reliable. However, we find that it is possible to derive meridional winds poleward of 70° latitude with absolute errors typically below ±5 ms−1 (at the 2-sigma level). This further demonstrate the value of Aeolus wind measurements for applications in weather and climate research, in addition to their important role in numerical weather prediction.

Isabell Krisch et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on amt-2021-381', Anonymous Referee #1, 22 Dec 2021
  • RC2: 'Comment on amt-2021-381', Anonymous Referee #2, 22 Dec 2021

Isabell Krisch et al.

Isabell Krisch et al.

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Short summary
The Aeolus satellite measures global height resolved profiles of wind along a certain line-of-sight. However, for atmospheric dynamics research, wind measurements along the three cardinal axes are most useful. This paper presents methods to convert the measurements into zonal and meridional wind components. By combining the measurements during ascending and descending orbits, we achieve good derivation of zonal wind (equatorward of 80° latitude) and meridional wind (poleward of 70° latitude).