744 Evaluation of the UAH GOES Insolation Product through Comparison with Pyranometer Measurements and Analysis Datasets

Tuesday, 9 January 2018
Exhibit Hall 3 (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Peiyang Cheng, Univ. of Alabama, Huntsville, AL; and A. P. Biazar, J. R. Mecikalski, and R. T. McNider
Manuscript (1.5 MB)

A high-resolution measurement of solar energy is anticipated by various climatological and agricultural researches and applications. However, the existing ground-based pyranometer network is not dense enough to meet this requirement. The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) has started to establish an archive of surface insolation estimates based on a simple physical model using Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) visible imagery to provide a high-resolution insolation estimates over large domains.
While this dataset has been used in previous air quality studies with limited evaluation, it is necessary to conduct a rigorous evaluation to validate the retrievals and to elucidate the limitations of the physical model. In this study, the UAH insolation product will be compared to pyranometer measurements from the Surface Radiation Budget Network (SURFRAD) and the U.S. Climate Reference Network (USCRN). Due to the difference in measuring concepts, the satellite-based estimates and pyranometer measurements are affected by the clouds and aerosols differently. Besides, comparison with the North American Regional Reanalysis (NARR) model for the surface radiation budgets will also be made.
Preliminary evaluation has shown that the UAH insolation product performs well under clear air conditions; but the existence of clouds and aerosols can affect the estimation and yield obvious biases. Besides, the product can estimate insolation precisely all season in the warm regions (e.g. the Southern U.S.), but perform poorly during the winter time in the colder climate. This is due to snow cover during winter and requires additional modifications to the retrieval algorithms. Preliminary results from this study will be presented.
- Indicates paper has been withdrawn from meeting
- Indicates an Award Winner