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Observations of clouds, aerosols, precipitation, and surface radiation over the Southern Ocean


McFarquhar, GM and Bretherton, CS and Marchand, R and Protat, A and DeMott, PJ and Alexander, S and Roberts, GC and Twohy, CH and Toohey, D and Siems, S and Huang, Y and Wood, R and Rauber, RM and Lasher-Trapp, S and Jensen, J and Stith, JL and Mace, J and Um, J and Jarvinen, E and Schnaiter, M and Gettelman, A and Sanchez, KJ and McCluskey, CS and Russell, LM and McCoy, IL and Atlas, RL and Bardeen, CG and Moore, KA and Hill, TCJ and Humphries, RS and Keywood, MD and Ristovski, Z and Cravigan, L and Schofield, R and Fairall, C and Mallet, MD and Kreidenweis, SM and Rainwater, B and D'Alessandro, J and Wang, Y and Wu, W and Saliba, G and Levin, EJT and Ding, S and Lang, F and Truong, SCH and Wolff, C and Haggerty, J and Harvey, MJ and Klekociuk, AR and McDonald, A, Observations of clouds, aerosols, precipitation, and surface radiation over the Southern Ocean, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 102, (4) pp. E894-E928. ISSN 0003-0007 (2021) [Refereed Article]

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2021 American Meteorological Society

DOI: doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-20-0132.1


Weather and climate models are challenged by uncertainties and biases in simulating Southern Ocean (SO) radiative fluxes that trace to a poor understanding of cloud, aerosol, precipitation, and radiative processes, and their interactions. Projects between 2016 and 2018 used in situ probes, radar, lidar, and other instruments to make comprehensive measurements of thermodynamics, surface radiation, cloud, precipitation, aerosol, cloud condensation nuclei (CCN), and ice nucleating particles over the SO cold waters, and in ubiquitous liquid and mixed-phase clouds common to this pristine environment. Data including soundings were collected from the NSF-NCAR G-V aircraft flying north-south gradients south of Tasmania, at Macquarie Island, and on the R/V Investigator and RSV Aurora Australis. Synergistically these data characterize boundary layer and free troposphere environmental properties, and represent the most comprehensive data of this type available south of the oceanic polar front, in the cold sector of SO cyclones, and across seasons. Results show largely pristine environments with numerous small and few large aerosols above cloud, suggesting new particle formation and limited long-range transport from continents, high variability in CCN and cloud droplet concentrations, and ubiquitous supercooled water in thin, multilayered clouds, often with small-scale generating cells near cloud top. These observations demonstrate how cloud properties depend on aerosols while highlighting the importance of dynamics and turbulence that likely drive heterogeneity of cloud phase. Satellite retrievals confirmed low clouds were responsible for radiation biases. The combination of models and observations is examining how aerosols and meteorology couple to control SO water and energy budgets.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Southern Ocean, cloud microphysics, cloud radiative effects, cloud water/phase, radiation budgets, aerosol-cloud interaction
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Atmospheric sciences
Research Field:Atmospheric composition, chemistry and processes
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Air quality, atmosphere and weather
Objective Field:Atmospheric processes and dynamics
UTAS Author:Alexander, S (Dr Simon Alexander)
UTAS Author:Mallet, MD (Dr Marc Mallet)
UTAS Author:Klekociuk, AR (Dr Andrew Klekociuk)
ID Code:145932
Year Published:2021
Web of Science® Times Cited:61
Deposited By:Oceans and Cryosphere
Deposited On:2021-08-12
Last Modified:2021-11-25
Downloads:7 View Download Statistics

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