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Comparison Analysis of Total Precipitable Water of Satellite-Borne Microwave Radiometer Retrievals and Island Radiosondes

1
College of Meteorology and Oceanography, National University of Defense Technology, Nanjing 211101, China
2
Xichang Satellite Launch Center, Xichang 210007, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Atmosphere 2019, 10(7), 390; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10070390
Received: 18 June 2019 / Revised: 6 July 2019 / Accepted: 8 July 2019 / Published: 12 July 2019
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Abstract

Total precipitable water (TPW) of satellite-borne microwave radiometer retrievals is compared with the data that were collected from 49 island radiosonde stations for the period 2007–2015. Great consistency was found between TPW measurements made by radiosonde and eight satellite-borne microwave radiometers, including SSMI-F13, SSMI-F14, SSMIS-F16, SSMIS-F17, AMSR-E, AMSR-2, GMI, and WindSat. Mean values of the TPW differences for eight satellites ranged from −0.51 to 0.38mm, both root mean square errors and standard deviations were around 3mm, and all of the correlation coefficients between satellite TPW retrievals and radiosonde TPW for each satellite can reach 0.99. Subsequently, an analysis of the comparison results was conducted, which revealed three problems in the satellite TPW retrieval and two problems in radiosonde data. For TPW retrievals of satellite, when the values are above 60 mm, the precision of TPW retrieval significantly decreases with a distinct dry bias, which can reach 4 mm; additionally, abias related to wind speed and the uncertainty with the TPW retrieval in the presence of rain, which is stronger than 1mm/h, was found. The TPW measurements of radiosonde made by the type of IM-MK3 from India were quite unreliable, and almost all of the radiosonde data during the daytime were plagued by a dry bias. View Full-Text
Keywords: total precipitable water; microwave radiometer retrievals; island radiosondes; comparison analysis total precipitable water; microwave radiometer retrievals; island radiosondes; comparison analysis
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Guan, J.-P.; Yin, Y.-T.; Zhang, L.-F.; Wang, J.-N.; Zhang, M.-Y. Comparison Analysis of Total Precipitable Water of Satellite-Borne Microwave Radiometer Retrievals and Island Radiosondes. Atmosphere 2019, 10, 390.

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