Subtropical and Polar Cirrus Clouds Characterized by Ground-Based Lidars and CALIPSO/CALIOP Observations

Córdoba Jabonero, C., Lopes, F. J. S., Landulfo, E., Ochoa, H., Gil Ojeda, M. 2016. Subtropical and Polar Cirrus Clouds Characterized by Ground-Based Lidars and CALIPSO/CALIOP Observations. 27th International Laser Radar Conference, 119, DOI: 10.1051/epjconf/201611916012

Cirrus clouds are product of weather processes, and then their occurrence and macrophysical/optical properties can vary significantly over different regions of the world. Lidars can provide height-resolved measurements with a relatively good both vertical and temporal resolutions, making them the most suitable instrumentation for high-cloud observations. The aim of this work is to show the potential of lidar observations on Cirrus clouds detection in combination with a recently proposed methodology to retrieve the Cirrus clouds macrophysical and optical features. In this sense, a few case studies of cirrus clouds observed at both subtropical and polar latitudes are examined and compared to CALIPSO/CALIOP observations. Lidar measurements are carried out in two stations: the Metropolitan city of Sao Paulo (MSP, Brazil, 23.3 degrees S 46.4 degrees W), located at subtropical latitudes, and the Belgrano II base (BEL, Argentina, 78 degrees S 35 degrees W) in the Antarctic continent. Optical (COD-cloud optical depth and LR-Lidar Ratio) and macrophysical (top/base heights and thickness) properties of both the subtropical and polar cirrus clouds are reported. In general, subtropical Cirrus clouds present lower LR values and are found at higher altitudes than those detected at polar latitudes. In general, Cirrus clouds are detected at similar altitudes by CALIOP. However, a poor agreement is achieved in the LR retrieved between ground-based lidars and space-borne CALIOP measurements, likely due to the use of a fixed (or low-variable) LR value in CALIOP inversion procedures.

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