462 Size and Frequency of Tropical Deep Convective Clouds Observed from the PATMOS-x AVHRR Record

Tuesday, 8 January 2019
Hall 4 (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Charles H. White, Univ. of Wisconsin–Madison, Madison, WI; and A. Heidinger

The Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) record is currently the longest of any satellite imager and provides at least twice-daily views of the earth per satellite since 1979. This work probes the 0.1° PATMOS-x reprocessing of the AVHRR Global Area Coverage record for deep convective clouds located in the tropics. Previous analysis of the PATMOS-x dataset has shown changes in deep convection cloud fraction over both land and ocean after 2000, and revealed an association between convective activity over land and moistening of the lower tropical stratosphere. In this long-term analysis, we will explore the variability in size, frequency, and location of deep convective clouds associated with this pre and post-2000 change. Using these very simple metrics, we aim to illustrate how the organization of tropical deep convection varies over the last 39 years. Changes in the size, frequency and location of these clouds will be examined in the context of other environmental variables such as sea surface temperature, and K-index from reanalysis datasets. Key challenges in this work which we address include accounting for the strong diurnal signal in these data, and the changing temporal resolution of the AVHRR record.
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