The PATMOS-x Cloud CDR: Climate Applications and Methods for Usage

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Thursday, 8 January 2015: 3:30 PM
231ABC (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Michael J. Foster, CIMSS/Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI; and A. Heidinger, A. Walther, D. Botambekov, and M. J. Hiley

The Pathfinder Atmospheres Extended (PATMOS-x) cloud team recently delivered its Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) record to NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) to serve in their satellite Climate Data Record (CDR) Program. The global record includes cloud coverage, height and optical properties and spans 1981 to present, incorporating measurements from fifteen sensors. This cloud CDR reports long-term changes in cloudiness and related optical properties over certain regions of the globe. In this presentation we will describe the record, it's strengths and weaknesses, and look at the methods used to provide inter- and intra-satellite consistency required for climate applications. In particular we use observed changes in cloudiness and related optical and physical properties over portions of North America as a case study of what methods may be used to characterize these changes and determine whether seemingly identified trends are statistically defensible.