Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Climate Research Facility US Department of Energy

Cloud LAnd Surface Interaction Campaign (CLASIC)

1 June 2007 - 30 June 2007

Lead Scientist: Mark Miller

Observatory: AAF, SGP

Cumulus convection is an important component of the atmospheric radiation budget and hydrologic cycle of the Southern Great Plains (SGP), particularly during the summertime growing season. Continental cumulus convection is strongly modulated by land surface conditions, while at the same time influencing the land surface itself through rain-induced changes in soil moisture and through its impact on photosynthesis. Land surface conditions determine whether the partitioning of surface available energy is dominated by the sensible heat flux or by the latent heat flux, which is an important factor in the evolution of the convective boundary layer. Consequently, land surface characteristics influence the timing and evolution of cumulus convection, in particular the cloud base height, cloud depth, and convective available potential energy. The four ARM Working groups endorsed an Intensive Observation Period (IOP at the Southern Great Plains (SGP) Climate Research User Facility during the summer of 2007. The purpose of this IOP was to advance our understanding of cumulus convection and its controls, particularly those associated with land surface processes. The Cloud and Land Surface Interaction Campaign (CLASIC) IOP covered a period of 1-3 months straddled the winter wheat harvest when large changes in the land surface lead to large changes in the surface albedo, latent heat flux, and sensible heat flux. The working groups were particularly interested in the relationship between land surface processes and the observed cloud cover, and vice versa. The new science that was proposed addressed specific aspects of the problem, especially known model deficiencies and gaps in our physical understanding of cloud and land surface feedbacks. In addition to advancing climate science, the working groups believed that this IOP would help realize the potential of ARM’s new instrument capabilities, provide significant validation data for NASA’s new active satellite remote sensors, and enhance ACRF capabilities by expanding into cross-discipline research.

Science Questions:

  1. What are the roles of cumulus convection and spatial variations in land cover in depleting low-level water vapor as it is advected into the SGP region?

  2. What are the relationships between cumulus clouds and aerosols and the soil-plant-atmosphere exchange of energy, carbon, and water at the site?

  3. How do soil moisture and land cover changes, such as agricultural harvesting, impact the surface energy, carbon, and water fluxes, and can they impact local and regional cumulus cloud formation at the SGP site?

  4. How do land surface processes at the SGP affect atmospheric aerosol loading and chemistry and what are the resulting effects on the microphysical and macrophysical properties of cumulus cloud fields?

  5. How well do the local measurements of the sensible, latent, and carbon fluxes made at the SGP represent the domain average fluxes?

For list of contributors to this field campaign, refer to the sponsors.


Schmid B, R Ellingson, and G McFarquhar. 2016. "ARM Aircraft Measurements." Meteorological Monographs, 57, 10.1175/AMSMONOGRAPHS-D-15-0042.1.


Schmid B, JM Tomlinson, JM Hubbe, JM Comstock, F Mei, D Chand, MS Pekour, CD Kluzek, E Andrews, SC Biraud, and GM McFarquhar. 2014. "The DOE ARM Aerial Facility." Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 95(5), 10.1175/bams-d-13-00040.1.


Roman MO, CK Gatebe, Y Shuai, Z Wang, F Gao, JG Masek, T He, S Liang, and CB Schaaf. 2013. "Use of In Situ and Airborne Multiangle Data to Assess MODIS- and Landsat-Based Estimates of Directional Reflectance and Albedo." IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing, 51(3), 10.1109/tgrs.2013.2243457.

Mather JH and JW Voyles. 2013. "The ARM Climate Research Facility: A Review of Structure and Capabilities." Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 94(3), 10.1175/bams-d-11-00218.1.
Research Highlight

Phillips V. 2013. Mechanisms for Indirect Effects from Aerosol Pollution on Glaciated Clouds. Presented at 4th Atmospheric System Research (ASR) Science Team Meeting. Potomac, MD.

Basara J, LM Tardif-Huber, DX Vanegas, BG Illston, CM Biradar, and WP Kustas. 2013. The Impact of Vegetation Conditions on Land-Atmosphere Interactions during an Anomalously Wet Period. Presented at 93th Annual American Meteorological Society (AMS) Meeting. Austin, TX.


Bozeman ML, D Niyogi, S Gopalakrishnan, FD Marks, XJ Zhang, and V Tallapragada. 2012. "An HWRF-based ensemble assessment of the land surface feedback on the post-landfall intensification of Tropical Storm Fay (2008)." Natural Hazards, 63(3), 10.1007/s11069-011-9841-5.

Portis D, P Lamb, and A Zangvil. 2012. Estimation of a Non-flux Component of Atmospheric Moisture Flux Divergence and Its Relation to SGP CLASIC Clouds and Rainfall. Presented at 3rd Atmospheric System Research (ASR) Science Team Meeting. Arlington, VA.

Charusambot U, D Niyogi, M Miller, and F Chen. 2012. Effect of Land Surface Interactions on Low-level Jet Development and Cloud Convection Processes: a Mesoscale Modeling Study Using the ARM CLASIC 2007 and IHOP 2002 Field Observations. Presented at 3rd Atmospheric System Research (ASR) Science Team Meeting. Arlington, VA.


Roman MO, CK Gatebe, CB Schaaf, R Poudyal, Z Wang, and MD King. 2011. "Variability in surface BRDF at different spatial scales (30 m–500 m) over a mixed agricultural landscape as retrieved from airborne and satellite spectral measurements." Remote Sensing of Environment, 115(9), 10.1016/j.rse.2011.04.012.

View All Related Publications

Campaign Data Sets

IOP Participant Data Source Name Final Data
Roni Avissar Helicopter Observation Platform Order Data
Maria Cadeddu Microwave Water Radiometer Order Data
Patrick Chuang Phase Doppler Interferometer Order Data
Don Collins Cloud Condensation Nuclei Counter Order Data
Don Collins Tandem Differential Mobility Analyzer Order Data
John DeVore Sun and Aureole Measurement Order Data
Rose Dominguez MODIS Airborne Simulator Order Data
Albin Gasiewski Polarimetric Scanning Radiometer Order Data
Charles Gatebe Cloud Absorption Radiometer Order Data
Gerald Heymsfield ER-2 Cloud Radar Order Data
Gerald Heymsfield ER-2 Navigation Order Data
Chris Hostetler HSR Lidar Order Data
Thomas Jackson Land Cover Order Data
Thomas Jackson Passive and Active L-band System Order Data
Thomas Jackson Soil Moisture and Ground Sampling Order Data
Thomas Jackson Soil Type Order Data
Thomas Jackson Tower Flux Measurements Order Data
Thomas Jackson Vegetation Water Content Order Data
Haflidi Jonsson CIRPAS Order Data
Jimena Lopez CIRPAS Carbon Monoxide Order Data
Sergey Matrosov Cloud and Rainfall Parameter Retrievals Order Data
Matt McGill ER-2 Cloud Lidar Order Data
John Ogren CESSNA Nephelometer Order Data
John Ogren CESSNA Particle Soot Absorption Photometer (PSAP) Order Data
John Ogren CIRPAS Nephelometer Order Data
John Ogren CIRPAS Particle Soot Absorption Photometer (PSAP) Order Data
Brad Orr Balloon-Borne Sounding System Order Data
Margaret Torn CESSNA CARBON FLASKS Order Data
Margaret Torn CESSNA CO2 Order Data
Margaret Torn CIRPAS CARBON FLASKS Order Data
Margaret Torn CIRPAS CO2 Order Data
Margaret Torn Radon Order Data
Shaocheng Xie Constrained Variational Objective Analysis Data Order Data

SGP Data Sources

Name Full Name Browse Data
ABRFC Arkansas-Red Basin River Forecast Center Browse Data
ACARS Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System Browse Data
AERI Atmospheric Emitted Radiance Interferometer Browse Data
AERINF AERI Noise Filtered Browse Data
AERIPROF AERI Profiles of Water Vapor and Temperature Browse Data
AEROSOLBE Aerosol Best Estimate Browse Data
AIP Aerosol Intensive Properties Browse Data
AOS Aerosol Observing System Browse Data
AOSCCNAVG Aerosol Observing System (AOS): cloud condensation nuclei data, averaged Browse Data
ARMBE ARM Best Estimate Data Products Browse Data
ARMBE2DGRID 2D Gridded Surface Data Set Browse Data
ARMBESTNS Station-based Surface Products Browse Data
ARSCL Active Remote Sensing of CLouds Browse Data
AVHRR Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer Browse Data
BAEBBR Best-Estimate Fluxes From EBBR Measurements and Bulk Aerodynamics Calculations Browse Data
BEFLUX Best-Estimate Radiative Flux Browse Data
BRS Broadband Radiometer Station Browse Data
CCN Cloud Condensation Nuclei Particle Counter Browse Data
CCNPROF Cloud Condensation Nuclei Profile Browse Data
CEIL Ceilometer Browse Data
CLDTYPE Cloud Type Classification Browse Data
CO Carbon Monoxide Mixing Ratio System Browse Data
CO2FLX Carbon Dioxide Flux Measurement Systems Browse Data
CSPHOT Cimel Sunphotometer Browse Data
DISDROMETER Impact Disdrometer Browse Data
EBBR Energy Balance Bowen Ratio Station Browse Data
ECMWFDIAG European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts Diagnostic Analyses Browse Data
ECOR Eddy Correlation Flux Measurement System Browse Data
FLASK Flask Samplers for Carbon Cycle Gases and Isotopes Browse Data
GOES Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites Browse Data
GOES-UTH Upper Tropospheric Relative Humidity from GOES Satellite Data Browse Data
IAP In-situ Aerosol Profiles (Cessna Aerosol Flights) Browse Data
INTERPSONDE Interpolated Sonde Browse Data
IRT Infrared Thermometer Browse Data
KSUMESO Kansas State University Mesonet Browse Data
LASSO LES ARM Symbiotic Simulation and Observation (LASSO) Browse Data
LSSONDE Microwave Radiometer-Scaled Sonde Profiles Browse Data
MERGESONDE Merged Sounding Browse Data
MET Surface Meteorological Instrumentation Browse Data
MFR Multifilter Radiometer Browse Data
MFRSR Multifilter Rotating Shadowband Radiometer Browse Data
MFRSRCLDOD Cloud Optical Properties from MFRSR Using Min Algorithm Browse Data
MMCR Millimeter Wavelength Cloud Radar Browse Data
MMCRMODE MMCR mode moments, derived by ARSCL process Browse Data
MOLTS Model Output Location Time Series Browse Data
MPL Micropulse Lidar Browse Data
MPLAVG MPL: data averaged to fixed 30 second interval, e.g. for polarized data Browse Data
MPLCMASK Cloud mask from Micropulse Lidar Browse Data
MWR Microwave Radiometer Browse Data
MWRAVG Microwave Radiometer Averages in 1- and 5-Minute Increments Browse Data
MWRHF Microwave Radiometer - High Frequency Browse Data
MWRRET MWR Retrievals Browse Data
NCEPGFS National Centers for Environment Prediction Global Forecast System Browse Data
NDROP Droplet number concentration Browse Data
NFOV Narrow Field of View Zenith Radiometer Browse Data
NIMFR Normal Incidence Multifilter Radiometer Browse Data
NOAACRN NOAA Climate Reference Network Browse Data
NWSUPA National Weather Service Upper Air Measurements Browse Data
OKM Oklahoma Mesonet Browse Data
OKMSOIL Oklahoma Mesonet Soil Moisture Browse Data
ORG Optical Rain Gauge Browse Data
PBLHT Planetary Boundary Layer Height Browse Data
PGS Precision Carbon Dioxide Mixing Ratio System Browse Data
QCECOR Quality Controlled Eddy Correlation Flux Measurement Browse Data
QCRAD Data Quality Assessment for ARM Radiation Data Browse Data
QMEAERILBL Comparison of Statistics or Clouds data from AERI vs. LBLRTM Model runs Browse Data
RADFLUXANAL Radiative Flux Analysis Browse Data
RAIN Rain Gauge Browse Data
RIPBE Radiatively Important Parameters Best Estimate Browse Data
RL Raman Lidar Browse Data
RLPROF Raman LIDAR Vertical Profiles Browse Data
RSS Rotating Shadowband Spectroradiometer Browse Data
RUC Rapid Update Cycle Model Data Browse Data
RWP Radar Wind Profiler Browse Data
SFCCLDGRID Surface Cloud Grid Browse Data
SHALLOWCUMULUS Fair-Weather Shallow Cumulus Identification Browse Data
SIRS Solar and Infrared Radiation Station Browse Data
SODAR Mini Sound Detection and Ranging Browse Data
SONDE Balloon-Borne Sounding System Browse Data
SONDEADJUST Sonde Adjust Browse Data
SONDEGRID Gridded Sonde VAP Product Browse Data
SUOMIGPS SuomiNet Global Positioning System Browse Data
SURFSPECALB Surface Spectral Albedo Browse Data
SURTHREF Surface Temperature and Humidity Reference System for Sondes Browse Data
SWATS Soil Water and Temperature System Browse Data
SWFLUXANAL Shortwave Flux Analysis Browse Data
SWS Shortwave Spectroradiometer Browse Data
TDMA Tandem Differential Mobility Analyzer Browse Data
TDMADAP Aerosol Properties derived from TDMA Measurements Browse Data
THWAPS Temperature, Humidity, Wind and Pressure Sensors Browse Data
TSI Total Sky Imager Browse Data
TWR Facility-specific multi-level Meteorological Instrumentation Browse Data
TWRMR Tower Water-Vapor Mixing Ratio Browse Data
USDARAD US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Radiation Monitoring Data Browse Data
VARANAL3D Three-dimensional Constrained Variational Analysis Browse Data
VDIS Video Disdrometer Browse Data
VISST Minnis Cloud Products Using Visst Algorithm Browse Data
WACR W-Band (95 GHz) ARM Cloud Radar Browse Data
WPDN Wind Profiler Demo Network Browse Data
WPDNGPS Wind Profiler Demonstration Network GPS Browse Data