Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Climate Research Facility US Department of Energy

Azores: Clouds, Aerosol and Precipitation in the Marine Boundary Layer (CAP-MBL)

1 May 2009 - 31 December 2009

Lead Scientist: Robert Wood

Observatory: AMF, GRW

The ARM Mobile Facility (AMF) was deployed in the Azores to support the Clouds, Aerosol, and Precipitation in the Marine Boundary Layer (CAP-MBL) field campaign. The AMF was located on Graciosa Island in the Azores, a Portuguese archipelago located about 3,900 kilometers from the east coast of North America. The Azores are ideally located to sample the transition from the overcast stratocumulus regime in the spring to the broken trade cumulus regime in the summer. Led by principal investigator Robert Wood, scientists involved in the campaign used data from the AMF to study processes controlling the radiative properties and microphysics of marine boundary layer clouds, a high-priority science question.

Surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, Graciosa Island is ideal for sampling the transition from an overcast stratocumulus regime in the spring to the broken trade cumulus regime in the summer.
Surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, Graciosa Island is ideal for sampling the transition from an overcast stratocumulus regime in the spring to the broken trade cumulus regime in the summer.


Thomas Ackerman Hugh Coe Rene Garreaud
Bruce Albrecht Chris Fairall Bjorn Stevens
Christopher Bretherton Graham Feingold David Turner

Related Publications


Rémillard J, A Fridlind, A Ackerman, G Tselioudis, P Kollias, D Mechem, H Chandler, E Luke, R Wood, M Witte, P Chuang, and J Ayers. 2017. "Use of cloud radar Doppler spectra to evaluate stratocumulus drizzle size distributions in large-eddy simulations with size-resolved microphysics." Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, 56(12), 10.1175/JAMC-D-17-0100.1.

Zheng X, S Klein, H Ma, P Caldwell, V Larson, A Gettelman, and P Bogenschutz. 2017. "A cloudy planetary boundary layer oscillation arising from the coupling of turbulence with precipitation in climate simulations." Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems, 9(4), doi:10.1002/2017MS000993.

Wood R, J Stemmler, J Rémillard, and A Jefferson. 2017. "Low-CCN concentration air masses over the eastern North Atlantic: Seasonality, meteorology, and drivers." Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 122(2), 10.1002/2016JD025557.


Zheng X, SA Klein, H Ma, P Bogenschutz, A Gettelman, and VE Larson. 2016. "Assessment of marine boundary layer cloud simulations in the CAM with CLUBB and updated microphysics scheme based on ARM observations from the Azores." Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 121(14), 10.1002/2016jd025274.

Sarna K and HW Russchenberg. 2016. "Ground-based remote sensing scheme for monitoring aerosol–cloud interactions." Atmospheric Measurement Techniques, 9(3), 10.5194/amt-9-1039-2016.


Rémillard J and G Tselioudis. 2015. "Cloud Regime Variability over the Azores and Its Application to Climate Model Evaluation." Journal of Climate, 28(24), 10.1175/jcli-d-15-0066.1.

Wu P, X Dong, and B Xi. 2015. "Marine boundary layer drizzle properties and their impact on cloud property retrieval." Atmospheric Measurement Techniques, 8(9), 10.5194/amt-8-3555-2015.

Wood R, M Wyant, CS Bretherton, J Rémillard, P Kollias, J Fletcher, J Stemmmmler, S de Szoeke, S Yuter, M Miller, D Mechem, G Tselioudis, JC Chiu, JA Mann, EJ O’Connor, RJ Hogan, X Dong, M Miller, V Ghate, A Jefferson, Q Min, P Minnis, R Palikonda, B Albrecht, E Luke, C Hannay, and Y Lin. 2015. "Clouds, Aerosols, and Precipitation in the Marine Boundary Layer: An Arm Mobile Facility Deployment." Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 96(3), 10.1175/bams-d-13-00180.1.


Xi B, P Minnis, and S Sun-Mack. 2014. "Comparison of marine boundary layer cloud properties from CERES-MODIS Edition 4 and DOE ARM AMF measurements at the Azores." Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 119(15), 10.1002/2014jd021813.

Logan T, B Xi, and X Dong. 2014. "Aerosol properties and their influences on marine boundary layer cloud condensation nuclei at the ARM mobile facility over the Azores." Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 119(8), 10.1002/2013jd021288.

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Campaign Data Sets

IOP Participant Data Source Name Final Data
Connor Flynn Aersol Optical Properties- Derived Order Data
Detlev Helmig Aethalometer Order Data
Gary Hodges Multifilter Rotating Shadowband Radiometer Order Data
Mark Miller Radiometer Order Data

GRW Data Sources

Name Full Name Browse Data
AERI Atmospheric Emitted Radiance Interferometer Browse Data
AERINF AERI Noise Filtered Browse Data
AIP Aerosol Intensive Properties Browse Data
AOD Aerosol Optical Depth, derived from atmospheric extinction of solar irradiance Browse Data
AOS Aerosol Observing System Browse Data
AOSCCNAVG Aerosol Observing System (AOS): cloud condensation nuclei data, averaged Browse Data
CCN Cloud Condensation Nuclei Particle Counter Browse Data
CEIL Ceilometer Browse Data
CSPHOT Cimel Sunphotometer Browse Data
ECMWFDIAG European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts Diagnostic Analyses Browse Data
ECOR Eddy Correlation Flux Measurement System Browse Data
GNDRAD Ground Radiometers on Stand for Upwelling Radiation Browse Data
IRT Infrared Thermometer Browse Data
MERGESONDE Merged Sounding Browse Data
MET Surface Meteorological Instrumentation Browse Data
MFRSR Multifilter Rotating Shadowband Radiometer Browse Data
MFRSRCLDOD Cloud Optical Properties from MFRSR Using Min Algorithm 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
MWRHF Microwave Radiometer - High Frequency Browse Data
MWRP Microwave Radiometer Profiler 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
PBLHT Planetary Boundary Layer Height Browse Data
QCECOR Quality Controlled Eddy Correlation Flux Measurement Browse Data
QCRAD Data Quality Assessment for ARM Radiation Data Browse Data
RADFLUXANAL Radiative Flux Analysis Browse Data
RWP Radar Wind Profiler Browse Data
SKYRAD Sky Radiometers on Stand for Downwelling Radiation Browse Data
SONDE Balloon-Borne Sounding System Browse Data
SONDEADJUST Sonde Adjust Browse Data
SWACR W-Band (95 GHz) ARM Cloud Radar, mounted to scan Browse Data
TSI Total Sky Imager Browse Data
TWRCAM Tower Camera Browse Data
VISST Minnis Cloud Products Using Visst Algorithm Browse Data
WACR W-Band (95 GHz) ARM Cloud Radar Browse Data
WACRARSCL W-band Cloud Radar Active Remote Sensing of Cloud Browse Data