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EARLINET evaluation of the CATS Level 2 aerosol backscatter coefficient product

2019, Proestakis, Emmanouil, Amiridis, Vassilis, Marinou, Eleni, Binietoglou, Ioannis, Ansmann, Albert, Wandinger, Ulla, Hofer, Julian, Yorks, John, Nowottnick, Edward, Makhmudov, Abduvosit, Papayannis, Alexandros, Pietruczuk, Aleksander, Gialitaki, Anna, Apituley, Arnoud, Szkop, Artur, Muñoz Porcar, Constantino, Bortoli, Daniele, Dionisi, Davide, Althausen, Dietrich, Mamali, Dimitra, Balis, Dimitris, Nicolae, Doina, Tetoni, Eleni, Liberti, Gian Luigi, Baars, Holger, Mattis, Ina, Stachlewska, Iwona Sylwia, Voudouri, Kalliopi Artemis, Mona, Lucia, Mylonaki, Maria, Perrone, Maria Rita, Costa, Maria João, Sicard, Michael, Papagiannopoulos, Nikolaos, Siomos, Nikolaos, Burlizzi, Pasquale, Pauly, Rebecca, Engelmann, Ronny, Abdullaev, Sabur, Pappalardo, Gelsomina

We present the evaluation activity of the European Aerosol Research Lidar Network (EARLINET) for the quantitative assessment of the Level 2 aerosol backscatter coefficient product derived by the Cloud-Aerosol Transport System (CATS) aboard the International Space Station (ISS; Rodier et al., 2015). The study employs correlative CATS and EARLINET backscatter measurements within a 50km distance between the ground station and the ISS overpass and as close in time as possible, typically with the starting time or stopping time of the EARLINET performed measurement time window within 90min of the ISS overpass, for the period from February 2015 to September 2016. The results demonstrate the good agreement of the CATS Level 2 backscatter coefficient and EARLINET. Three ISS overpasses close to the EARLINET stations of Leipzig, Germany; Évora, Portugal; and Dushanbe, Tajikistan, are analyzed here to demonstrate the performance of the CATS lidar system under different conditions. The results show that under cloud-free, relative homogeneous aerosol conditions, CATS is in good agreement with EARLINET, independent of daytime and nighttime conditions. CATS low negative biases are observed, partially attributed to the deficiency of lidar systems to detect tenuous aerosol layers of backscatter signal below the minimum detection thresholds; these are biases which may lead to systematic deviations and slight underestimations of the total aerosol optical depth (AOD) in climate studies. In addition, CATS misclassification of aerosol layers as clouds, and vice versa, in cases of coexistent and/or adjacent aerosol and cloud features, occasionally leads to non-representative, unrealistic, and cloud-contaminated aerosol profiles. Regarding solar illumination conditions, low negative biases in CATS backscatter coefficient profiles, of the order of 6.1%, indicate the good nighttime performance of CATS. During daytime, a reduced signal-to-noise ratio by solar background illumination prevents retrievals of weakly scattering atmospheric layers that would otherwise be detectable during nighttime, leading to higher negative biases, of the order of 22.3%. © Author(s) 2019.

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The automated multiwavelength Raman polarization and water-vapor lidar PollyXT: The neXT generation

2016, Engelmann, Ronny, Kanitz, Thomas, Baars, Holger, Heese, Birgit, Althausen, Dietrich, Skupin, Annett, Wandinger, Ulla, Komppula, Mika, Stachlewska, Iwona S., Amiridis, Vassilis, Marinou, Eleni, Mattis, Ina, Linné, Holger, Ansmann, Albert

The atmospheric science community demands autonomous and quality-assured vertically resolved measurements of aerosol and cloud properties. For this purpose, a portable lidar called Polly was developed at TROPOS in 2003. The lidar system was continuously improved with gained experience from the EARLINET community, involvement in worldwide field campaigns, and international institute collaborations within the last 10 years. Here we present recent changes of the setup of the portable multiwavelength Raman and polarization lidar PollyXT and discuss the improved capabilities of the system by means of a case study. The latest system developments include an additional near-range receiver unit for Raman measurements of the backscatter and extinction coefficient down to 120 m above ground, a water-vapor channel, and channels for simultaneous measurements of the particle linear depolarization ratio at 355 and 532 nm. Quality improvements were achieved by systematically following the EARLINET guidelines and the international PollyNET quality assurance developments. A modified ship radar ensures measurements in agreement with air-traffic safety regulations and allows for 24∕7 monitoring of the atmospheric state with PollyXT.