skip to main content

Title: Cloudnet Project

Cloudnet is a research project supported by the European Commission. This project aims to use data obtained quasi-continuously for the development and implementation of cloud remote sensing synergy algorithms. The use of active instruments (lidar and radar) results in detailed vertical profiles of important cloud parameters which cannot be derived from current satellite sensing techniques. A network of three already existing cloud remote sensing stations (CRS-stations) will be operated for a two year period, activities will be co-ordinated, data formats harmonised and analysis of the data performed to evaluate the representation of clouds in four major european weather forecast models.
Publication Date:
DOE Contract Number:
Product Type:
Research Org(s):
Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Archive, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (US)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER)
54 Environmental Sciences; Cloud fraction; Cloud location; Cloud optical depth; Cloud base height; Cloud top height; Ice water content; Liquid water content
OSTI Identifier:
  1. ARM focuses on obtaining continuous measurements—supplemented by field campaigns—and providing data products that promote the advancement of climate models. ARM data include routine data products, value-added products (VAPs), field campaign data, complementary external data products from collaborating programs, and data contributed by ARM principal investigators for use by the scientific community. Data quality reports, graphical displays of data availability/quality, and data plots are also available from the ARM Data Center. Serving users worldwide, the ARM Data Center collects and archives approximately 20 terabytes of data per month. Datastreams are generally available for download within 48 hours.
No associated Collections found.
  1. This database contains surface synoptic weather reports for the entire globe, gathered from various available data sets. The reports were processed, edited, and rewritten to provide a single dataset of individual observations of clouds, spanning the 57 years 1952-2008 for ship data and the 39more » years 1971-2009 for land station data. In addition to the cloud portion of the synoptic report, each edited report also includes the associated pressure, present weather, wind, air temperature, and dew point (and sea surface temperature over oceans). This data set is called the "Extended Edited Cloud Report Archive" (EECRA). The EECRA is based solely on visual cloud observations from weather stations, reported in the WMO synoptic code (WMO, 1974). Reports must contain cloud-type information to be included in the archive. Past data sources include those from the Fleet Numerical Oceanographic Center (FNOC, 1971-1976) and the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP, 1977-1996). This update uses data from a new source, the 'Integrated Surface Database' (ISD, 1997-2009; Smith et al., 2011). Our past analyses of the EECRA identified a subset of 5388 weather stations that were determined to produce reliable day and night observations of cloud amount and type. The update contains observations only from this subset of stations. Details concerning processing, previous problems, contents, and comments are available in the archive's original documentation . The EECRA contains about 81 million cloud observations from ships and 380 million from land stations. The data files have been compressed using unix. Unix/linux users can "uncompress" or "gunzip" the files after downloading. If you're interested in the NDP-026C database, then you'll also want to explore its related data products, NDP-026D and NDP-026E. « less
  2. Surface synoptic weather reports from ships and land stations worldwide were processed to produce a global cloud climatology which includes: total cloud cover, the amount and frequency of occurrence of nine cloud types within three levels of the troposphere, the frequency of occurrence of clearmore » sky and of precipitation, the base heights of low clouds, and the non-overlapped amounts of middle and high clouds. Synoptic weather reports are made every three hours; the cloud information in a report is obtained visually by human observers. The reports used here cover the period 1971-96 for land and 1954-2008 for ocean. This digital archive provides multi-year monthly, seasonal, and annual averages in 5x5-degree grid boxes (or 10x10-degree boxes for some quantities over the ocean). Daytime and nighttime averages, as well as the diurnal average (average of day and night), are given. Nighttime averages were computed using only those reports that met an "illuminance criterion" (i.e., made under adequate moonlight or twilight), thus minimizing the "night-detection bias" and making possible the determination of diurnal cycles and nighttime trends for cloud types. The phase and amplitude of the first harmonic of both the diurnal cycle and the annual cycle are given for the various cloud types. Cloud averages for individual years are also given for the ocean for each of 4 seasons, and for each of the 12 months (daytime-only averages for the months). [Individual years for land are not gridded, but are given for individual stations in a companion data set, CDIAC's NDP-026D).] This analysis used 185 million reports from 5388 weather stations on continents and islands, and 50 million reports from ships; these reports passed a series of quality-control checks. This analysis updates (and in most ways supercedes) the previous cloud climatology constructed by the authors in the 1980s. Many of the long-term averages described here are mapped on the University of Washington, Department of Atmospheric Sciences Web site. The Online Cloud Atlas containing NDP-026E data is available via the University of Washington. « less
  3. This campaign was designed to provide a detailed set of observations with which to 1) perform radiative and cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) closure studies, 2) evaluate a new retrieval algorithm for aerosol optical depth (AOD) in the presence of clouds using passive remote sensing 3)more » extend a previously developed technique to investigate aerosol indirect effects, and 4) evaluate the performance of a detailed regional-scale model and a more parameterized global-scale model in simulating particle activation and AOD associated with the aging of anthropogenic aerosols. To meet these science objectives, the ARM Mobile Facility (AMF) and the Mobile Aerosol Observing System (MAOS) was deployed on Cape Cod, Massachusetts for a 12-month period starting in the summer of 2012 in order to quantify aerosol properties, radiation and cloud characteristics at a location subject to both clear- and cloudy- conditions, and clean- and polluted-conditions. These observations were supplemented by two aircraft intensive observation periods (IOPS), one in the summer and a second in the winter. Each IOP required two aircraft. « less
  4. This data base presents monthly sunshine data from 240 U.S. stations (including Puerto Rico and nine Pacific Islands) and monthly cloud amount data from 197 U.S. stations. The longest periods of record are 1891 through 1987 for the sunshine data and 1871 through 1987 formore » the cloud data. The sunshine data were derived from measurements taken by a variety of sunshine-recording instruments. The cloud data were derived from land-based estimates of fractional cloud amount, which were made with observation practices that have varied during the period of record. Station number, station name, latitude, and longitude are given for all stations in each network. The sunshine data include monthly and annual total hours of recorded sunshine, monthly and annual maximum possible hours of sunshine, monthly and annual percentages of possible sunshine (hours recorded/hours possible), and dates of use for specific types of sunshine recorders at each station. The cloud data contain monthly and annual cloud amount (in percent of sky cover). « less
  5. Cloud droplet number concentration is an important factor in understanding aerosol-cloud interactions. As aerosol concentration increases, it is expected that droplet number concentration, Nd, will increase and droplet size decrease, for a given liquid water path (Twomey 1977), which will greatly affect cloud albedo asmore » smaller droplets reflect more shortwave radiation. However, the magnitude and variability of these processes under different environmental conditions is still uncertain. McComiskey et al. (2009) have implemented a method, based on Boers and Mitchell (1994), for calculating Nd from ground-based remote sensing measurements of optical depth and liquid water path. They show that the magnitude of the aerosol-cloud interactions (ACI) varies with a range of factors, including the relative value of the cloud liquid water path (LWP), the aerosol size distribution, and the cloud updraft velocity. Estimates of Nd under a range of cloud types and conditions and at a variety of sites are needed to further quantify the impacts of aerosol cloud interactions. « less