Relationships Among Tropical Cloud Characteristics and Components of the Surface Heat Budget

Curry, J.A., and Webster, P.J., University of Colorado; Clayson, C.A., Purdue University
Eighth Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Science Team Meeting

Satellite data obtained during the TOGA COARE Intensive Observation Period (IOP) has been used to create a high resolution dataset (50 km, 3 hrs) of cloud characteristics (phase, height, precipitation) and components of the surface energy budget (radiation, sensible and latent heat fluxes). The satellite dataset has been evaluated using in situ observations obtained during TOGA COARE. A cloud classification scheme based upon cloud top height, phase, and precipitation is used as a framework to interpret the effect of the different cloud types on the component surface fluxes and also the net surface heat flux.