Marine Boundary Layer Heights over the Eastern North Pacific Based on Measurements from the MAGIC Field Campaign

Monday, 15 December 2014: 11:35 AM
Ernie R Lewis, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, NY, United States
The MAGIC field campaign, funded and operated by the ARM (Atmospheric Radiation Measurement) Climate Research Facility of the US Department of Energy, occurred between September 2012 and October, 2013 aboard the Horizon Lines cargo container ship Spirit making regular trips between Los Angeles, CA and Honolulu, HI. Along this route, which lies very near the GPCI (GCSS Pacific Cross-section Intercomparison) transect, the predominant cloud regime changes from stratocumulus near the California coast to trade-wind cumulus near Hawaii. The transition between these two regimes is poorly understood and not accurately represented in models. The goal of MAGIC was to acquire statistic of this transition and thus improve its representation in models by making repeated transects through this region and measuring properties of clouds and precipitation, aerosols, radiation, and atmospheric structure. To achieve these goals, the Second ARM Mobile Facility (AMF2) was deployed on the Horizon Spiritas it ran its regular route between Los Angeles and Honolulu. AMF2 consists of three 20-foot SeaTainers and includes three radars, lidars, a ceilometer, microwave radiometers, a total sky imager, disdrometers, and other instruments to measure properties of clouds and precipitation; and other instruments to measure properties of aerosols, radiation, meteorological quantities, and sea surface temperature. Two technicians accompanied the AMF2, and scientists rode the ship as observers. Radiosondes were routinely launched four times daily, and during one round trip in July, 2013, eight radiosondes were launched each day. In total, more than 550 soundings were made. MAGIC made nearly 20 round trips between Los Angeles and Honolulu (and thus nearly 40 excursions through the stratocumulus-to-cumulus transition) and spent 200 days at sea, collecting an unprecedented data set.

Boundary layer heights calculated from the radiosonde data using several different algorithms, and those from other instruments such as the ceilometer, are compared for the entire deployment, and these values are examined in terms of other meteorological and environmental parameters.