Global distribution of instantaneous daytime radiative effects of high thin clouds observed by the cloud profiling radar Academic Article uri icon


  • The instantaneous daytime geographical distribution and radiative effects of high thin clouds (optical thickness < 5) are investigated on the basis of the CloudSat Cloud Profiling Radar (CPR) radiative flux and cloud classification products. The regional features of the fraction and radiative effects of high thin clouds are associated with ITCZ, SPCZ and mid-latitude storm track regions. High thin clouds have positive net cloud-induced radiative effect (CRE) at the top of the atmosphere (TOA) and negative net CRE at the bottom of the atmosphere (BOA). The magnitudes of TOA and BOA CREs depend on cloud optical thickness, cloud fraction and geographical location. The magnitude of the net CRE of high thin clouds increases at both TOA and BOA as cloud optical thickness increases. Net CRE at both TOA and BOA contributes to a positive net CRE in-atmosphere and warms the atmosphere regardless of cloud fraction. The global annual mean of the net CRE multiplied by cloud fraction is 0.49 W/m2 at TOA,-0.54 W/m2 at BOA and 1.03 W/m2in-atmosphere. The most radiatively effective cloud optical thickness of a high thin cloud is between 1-2 for the TOA and in-atmosphere CREs or 3-4 for the BOA CRE. 2010 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Lee, Y., Greenwald, T. J., Yang, P., Ackerman, S., & Huang, H.

citation count

  • 3

complete list of authors

  • Lee, Yong-Keun||Greenwald, Thomas J||Yang, Ping||Ackerman, Steve||Huang, Hung-Lung

publication date

  • September 2010