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Title: West Antarctic Ice Sheet Cloud Cover and Surface Radiation Budget from NASA A-Train Satellites

Abstract

Clouds are an essential parameter of the surface energy budget influencing the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) response to atmospheric warming and net contribution to global sea-level rise. A four-year record of NASA A-Train cloud observations is combined with surface radiation measurements to quantify the WAIS radiation budget and constrain the three-dimensional occurrence frequency, thermodynamic phase partitioning, and surface radiative effect of clouds over West Antarctica (WA). The skill of satellite-modeled radiative fluxes is confirmed through evaluation against measurements at four Antarctic sites (WAIS Divide Ice Camp, Neumayer, Syowa, and Concordia Stations). And due to perennial high-albedo snow and ice cover, cloud infrared emission dominates over cloud solar reflection/absorption leading to a positive net all-wave cloud radiative effect (CRE) at the surface, with all monthly means and 99.15% of instantaneous CRE values exceeding zero. The annual-mean CRE at theWAIS surface is 34 W m -2, representing a significant cloud-induced warming of the ice sheet. Low-level liquid-containing clouds, including thin liquid water clouds implicated in radiative contributions to surface melting, are widespread and most frequent in WA during the austral summer. Clouds warm the WAIS by 26 W m -2, in summer, on average, despite maximum offsetting shortwave CRE. Glaciated cloudmore » systems are strongly linked to orographic forcing, with maximum incidence on the WAIS continuing downstream along the Transantarctic Mountains.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [2];  [3]
  1. Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California
  2. Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, New York
  3. NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
OSTI Identifier:
1369498
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1366350
Report Number(s):
BNL-113984-2017-JA
Journal ID: ISSN 0894-8755
Grant/Contract Number:  
SC0012704
Resource Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Journal of Climate
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Journal of Climate Journal Volume: 30 Journal Issue: 16; Journal ID: ISSN 0894-8755
Publisher:
American Meteorological Society
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES

Citation Formats

Scott, Ryan C., Lubin, Dan, Vogelmann, Andrew M., and Kato, Seiji. West Antarctic Ice Sheet Cloud Cover and Surface Radiation Budget from NASA A-Train Satellites. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0644.1.
Scott, Ryan C., Lubin, Dan, Vogelmann, Andrew M., & Kato, Seiji. West Antarctic Ice Sheet Cloud Cover and Surface Radiation Budget from NASA A-Train Satellites. United States. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0644.1.
Scott, Ryan C., Lubin, Dan, Vogelmann, Andrew M., and Kato, Seiji. Wed . "West Antarctic Ice Sheet Cloud Cover and Surface Radiation Budget from NASA A-Train Satellites". United States. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0644.1.
@article{osti_1369498,
title = {West Antarctic Ice Sheet Cloud Cover and Surface Radiation Budget from NASA A-Train Satellites},
author = {Scott, Ryan C. and Lubin, Dan and Vogelmann, Andrew M. and Kato, Seiji},
abstractNote = {Clouds are an essential parameter of the surface energy budget influencing the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) response to atmospheric warming and net contribution to global sea-level rise. A four-year record of NASA A-Train cloud observations is combined with surface radiation measurements to quantify the WAIS radiation budget and constrain the three-dimensional occurrence frequency, thermodynamic phase partitioning, and surface radiative effect of clouds over West Antarctica (WA). The skill of satellite-modeled radiative fluxes is confirmed through evaluation against measurements at four Antarctic sites (WAIS Divide Ice Camp, Neumayer, Syowa, and Concordia Stations). And due to perennial high-albedo snow and ice cover, cloud infrared emission dominates over cloud solar reflection/absorption leading to a positive net all-wave cloud radiative effect (CRE) at the surface, with all monthly means and 99.15% of instantaneous CRE values exceeding zero. The annual-mean CRE at theWAIS surface is 34 W m-2, representing a significant cloud-induced warming of the ice sheet. Low-level liquid-containing clouds, including thin liquid water clouds implicated in radiative contributions to surface melting, are widespread and most frequent in WA during the austral summer. Clouds warm the WAIS by 26 W m-2, in summer, on average, despite maximum offsetting shortwave CRE. Glaciated cloud systems are strongly linked to orographic forcing, with maximum incidence on the WAIS continuing downstream along the Transantarctic Mountains.},
doi = {10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0644.1},
journal = {Journal of Climate},
number = 16,
volume = 30,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {4}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record
DOI: 10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0644.1

Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 3 works
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Works referencing / citing this record:

January 2016 extensive summer melt in West Antarctica favoured by strong El Niño
journal, June 2017

  • Nicolas, Julien P.; Vogelmann, Andrew M.; Scott, Ryan C.
  • Nature Communications, Vol. 8, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1038/ncomms15799

Antarctic clouds, supercooled liquid water and mixed phase, investigated with DARDAR: geographical and seasonal variations
journal, January 2019

  • Listowski, Constantino; Delanoë, Julien; Kirchgaessner, Amélie
  • Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, Vol. 19, Issue 10
  • DOI: 10.5194/acp-19-6771-2019