Next Article in Journal
Seasonal and Diurnal Variations of Total Gaseous Mercury in Urban Houston, TX, USA
Next Article in Special Issue
Performance of Using Cascade Forward Back Propagation Neural Networks for Estimating Rain Parameters with Rain Drop Size Distribution
Previous Article in Journal
Mercury Plumes in the Global Upper Troposphere Observed during Flights with the CARIBIC Observatory from May 2005 until June 2013
Previous Article in Special Issue
Analysis and Application of the Relationship between Cumulonimbus (Cb) Cloud Features and Precipitation Based on FY-2C Image
Open AccessArticle

Patterns of Precipitation and Convection Occurrence over the Mediterranean Basin Derived from a Decade of Microwave Satellite Observations

Laboratoire de Météorologie Dynamique-IPSL, CNRS, Ecole Polytechnique, 91128 Palaiseau, France
Department of Mechanical Engineering, ENSTA-ParisTech, 91762 Palaiseau, France
CNRS, LETG-Rennes-COSTEL UMR 6554, Université Rennes 2, 35043 Rennes, France
Laboratoire d'Aérologie, University of Toulouse and CNRS, F-31400 Toulouse, France
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Atmosphere 2014, 5(2), 370-398;
Received: 13 January 2014 / Revised: 8 April 2014 / Accepted: 22 April 2014 / Published: 30 May 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cloud and Precipitation)
The Mediterranean region is characterized by its vulnerability to changes in the water cycle, with the impact of global warming on the water resources being one of the major concerns in social, economical and scientific ambits. Even if precipitation is the best-known term of the Mediterranean water budget, large uncertainties remain due to the lack of suitable offshore observational data. In this study, we use the data provided by the Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit-B (AMSU-B) on board NOAA satellites to detect and analyze precipitating and convective events over the last decade at spatial resolution of 0.2° latitude × 0.2° longitude. AMSU-B observation shows that rain occurrence is widespread over the Mediterranean in wintertime while reduced in the eastern part of the basin in summer. Both precipitation and convection occurrences display a weak diurnal cycle over sea. In addition, convection occurrences, which are essentially located over land during summertime, shift to mostly over the sea during autumn with maxima in the Ionian sub-basin and the Adriatic Sea. Precipitation occurrence is also inferred over the sea from two other widely used climatological datasets, HOAPS (Hamburg Ocean Atmosphere Parameters and Fluxes from Satellite Data) and the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) reanalysis interim (ERA-Interim). There is generally a rather fair agreement between these climatologies for describing the large-scale patterns such as the strong latitudinal gradient of rain and eastward rain signal propagation. Furthermore, the higher spatial resolution of AMSU-B measurements (16 km at nadir) gives access to mesoscale details in the region (e.g., coastal areas). AMSU-B measurements show less rain occurrences than HOAPS during wintertime, thereby suggesting that some of the thresholds used in our method might be too stringent during this season. We also observed that convection occurrences in ERA-Interim are systematically lower than those derived from AMSU-B. These results are potentially valuable to evaluate the rainfall parameterization in weather and climate models and to constrain ocean models. View Full-Text
Keywords: precipitation; convection; microwave remote sensing; climatology; Mediterranean precipitation; convection; microwave remote sensing; climatology; Mediterranean
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Alhammoud, B.; Claud, C.; Funatsu, B.M.; Béranger, K.; Chaboureau, J.-P. Patterns of Precipitation and Convection Occurrence over the Mediterranean Basin Derived from a Decade of Microwave Satellite Observations. Atmosphere 2014, 5, 370-398.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Article Access Map by Country/Region

Only visits after 24 November 2015 are recorded.
Search more from Scilit
Back to TopTop