A new method to retrieve cloud top heights stereoscopically using the dual-view facility of the Along Track Scanning Radiometer 2 (ATSR-2) instrument is assessed. This assessment is performed through a comparison of the cloud top heights obtained from ATSR-2 stereo and those derived from a 94-GHz radar, radiosonde profiles and independently from the Modular Optoelectronic Scanner (MOS) using the O2-A band. The data for this study were collected over the United Kingdom from September 1998-March 1999. The results show that the accuracy of the ATSR-2 stereo heights is generally as predicted on theoretical grounds, with the errors in the 1.6μm and 0.65μm stereo heights rarely exceeding 2 km. Case study periods with disagreements between the ATSR-2 heights and the ground-based retrievals are often due to the lack of precise match-ups between the ground-based and satellite scenes, while the MOS O2-A band is shown sometimes to miss the tops of high clouds. Evidence that the 11μm channel is more sensitive to high clouds than originally thought is given and a future application of multi-spectral stereo cloud top heights is proposed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)