Comparison of airborne and ground based measurements and the relationships between microphysical parameters from GCPEx

Monday, 15 December 2014
Kirstin Gleicher1, Stephen W Nesbitt2, Kimberly A Reed1, George Duffy1, Christopher R Williams3, Aaron Bansemer4, Stephen J Munchak5, Andrew Heymsfield4 and Walter Arthur Petersen6, (1)University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, Atmospheric Sciences, Urbana, IL, United States, (2)University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, Urbana, IL, United States, (3)University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder, CO, United States, (4)National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO, United States, (5)NASA GSFC, Greenbelt, MD, United States, (6)NASA GSFC/WFF Code 610.W, Wallops Island, VA, United States
As part of Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) ground validation, the GPM Cold-season Precipitation Experiment (GCPEx) utilized aircraft, ground, and remote sensing instrumentation to sample snowfall characteristics in Ontario, Canada from January to February 2012. In-situ measurements from the University of North Dakota Citation aircraft and 2-D video disdrometers (2DVD) represent a large dataset of particle size distributions (PSD) from which we can examine statistical relationships and variability of parameters important to the GPM algorithms.

In this study, emphasis is placed on calculating PSD parameters using theoretical and fitted techniques with potential applications toward GPM algorithms. We also seek to determine how the PSD parameters measured by aircraft differ from parameters measured by 2DVD at the CARE central facility. The goal of this study is to determine relationships between PSD parameters in the ice vertical column and examine whether these PSD relationships are seen in aircraft data is representative of surface precipitation. Application of these size distribution relationships will be applied to remote sensing retrievals in GPM.