21 Nov 2022
21 Nov 2022
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal AMT.

Numerical Model Generation of Test Frames for Pre-launch Studies of EarthCARE’s Retrieval Algorithms and Data Management System

Zhipeng Qu1, David P. Donovan2, Howard W. Barker1, Jason N. S. Cole1, Mark W. Shephard1, and Vincent Huijnen2 Zhipeng Qu et al.
  • 1Environment and Climate Change Canada, Toronto, ON, Canada
  • 2Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute, De Bilt, Netherlands

Abstract. The Earth Cloud, Aerosol and Radiation Explorer (EarthCARE) satellite consists of active and passive sensors whose observations will be acted on by an array of retrieval algorithms. Earth-CARE’s retrieval algorithms have undergone pre-launch verifications within a virtual observing system that consists of 3D atmosphere-surface data produced by the Global Environmental Multi-scale (GEM) NWP model, and instrument simulators that when applied to NWP data yield syn-thetic observations for EarthCARE’s four sensors. Retrieval algorithms operate on the synthetic observations and their estimates go into radiative transfer models that produce top-of-atmosphere solar and thermal broadband radiative quantities, which are compared to synthetic broadband measurements thus mimicking EarthCARE’s radiative closure assessment. Three high-resolution test frames were simulated; each measures ~6,200 km along-track by 200 km across-track. Hori-zontal grid-spacing is 250 m and there are 57 atmospheric layers up to 10 mb. The frames span wide ranges of conditions and extend over: i) Greenland to The Caribbean crossing a cold front off Nova Scotia; ii) Nunavut to Baja California crossing over Colorado’s Rooky Mountains; and iii) central equatorial Pacific Ocean that includes a mesoscale convective system. This report discusses how the test frames were produced and presents their key geophysical features. All data are publicly available and, owing to their high-resolution, could be used to simulate observations for other measurement systems.

Zhipeng Qu et al.

Status: open (until 27 Dec 2022)

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Zhipeng Qu et al.


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Short summary
The Level 2 algorithms development of EarthCARE satellite mission requires realistic three-dimensional cloud and aerosols scenes along the satellite orbits. One of the best way to produce these scenes is to use high-resolution numerical weather prediction model to simulate atmospheric conditions at 250 m horizontal resolution. This manuscript describes the production and validation of three EarthCARE test scenes.