21st Conference on Climate Variability and Change


Variance Scaling of Temperature and Water Vapor from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder and Cloud Water Content from CloudSat

Brian H. Kahn, JPL, Pasadena, CA; and J. Teixeira and E. J. Fetzer

We present results of variance length scaling within the troposphere using derived temperature and water vapor profiles from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS). We show that temperature has a power law exponent closer to -3 in Mid-latitudes at length scales > 500 km or so, but closer to -5/3 at scales < 500 km, as has been observed by various aircraft campaigns and suggested by numerical modeling and theoretical studies. A larger negative exponent in the power law implies dominance by larger spatial scales. The temperature exponent in the Tropics at all length scales becomes less negative and is larger than -5/3. For water vapor, the scaling relationships vary differently from temperature with -5/3 observed in the Mid-latitudes, and less than -2 in parts of the Tropics and Subtropics, with little to no scale break observed. Furthermore, we extend the variance scaling analysis to Cloudsat observed cloud water content (CWC) fields for multiple cloud types that are coincident to AIRS profiles. The consistency of the CWC scaling across length scales of several km to 100s of km to temperature and water vapor scaling at larger length scales is investigated.

Poster Session 3, Global dynamics and prediction - posters
Tuesday, 13 January 2009, 9:45 AM-11:00 AM, Hall 5

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