By Alexander Marshak, Anthony Davis

Developments in three-d cloud radiation during the last few many years are assessed and distilled into this contributed quantity. Chapters are authored via subject-matter specialists who address a wide viewers of graduate scholars, researchers, and someone drawn to cloud-radiation techniques within the sun and infrared spectral regions. After introductory chapters and a piece at the primary physics and computational ideas, the quantity widely treats major software parts: the impression of clouds at the Earth's radiation funds, that is a vital element of weather modeling; and distant remark of clouds, specifically with the complex sensors on present and destiny satellite tv for pc missions.

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Extra resources for 3D radiative transfer in cloudy atmospheres

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Wiscombe When I entered the atmospheric radiation field in 1970, it was so small that it hadn’t even had its first AMS conference yet (Tom Vonder Haar organized one in 1972). The subject was primarily viewed as providing computer codes for GCMs – and GCMs then were General Circulation Models, long before they made their clever segue to become Global Climate Models. I was told upon entering the field that an essential skill was reading a “radiation chart,” a kind of graphical parameterization invented in the 1940s, but alas, mastery of the chart always eluded me.

Cubic clouds, the paradigm of those days, seemed too unrealistic geometrically, and the paltry 50,000 Monte Carlo photons that we could throw at them seemed too small to learn much other than that holes between clouds really do matter. The deep ideas of scaling necessary to properly model cloud structure were in their infancy then. Starting in the late 1980s, through the ARM Program, I was able to participate in creating new observational and theoretical tools for 3D clouds that made the subject more tractable.

At that rate, assuming an aircraft speed of 100 m/s, it would take 800,000 years, or about 8 ice ages, to sample 1 km3 of cloud. Such sample volumes are so small that they raise serious issues of statistical significance. Only by assuming spatial homogeneity can such data be extrapolated to a whole cloud; but I challenge anyone to find a spatially homogeneous cloud. A little-discussed issue is how to bootstrap 1D aircraft data into a 3D picture of cloud. This is not as simple as one might think. At the very least, the 1D view will be biased.

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