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Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 10, 1093-1117, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-10-1093-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Review article
15 Jun 2018
The GEWEX Water Vapor Assessment archive of water vapour products from satellite observations and reanalyses
Marc Schröder1, Maarit Lockhoff1, Frank Fell2, John Forsythe3, Tim Trent4,5, Ralf Bennartz6,7, Eva Borbas7, Michael G. Bosilovich8, Elisa Castelli9, Hans Hersbach10, Misako Kachi11, Shinya Kobayashi12, E. Robert Kursinski13, Diego Loyola14, Carl Mears15, Rene Preusker16, William B. Rossow17, and Suranjana Saha18 1Satellite-Based Climate Monitoring, Deutscher Wetterdienst, 63067 Offenbach, Germany
2Informus GmbH, Berlin, Germany
3Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO, USA
4Earth Observation Science, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester, University Road, Leicester, LE1 7RH, UK
5National Centre for Earth Observation, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester, University Road, Leicester, LE1 7RH, UK
6Earth & Environmental Sciences Department, Vanderbilt University, Nashville TN, USA
7Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies, Space Science and Engineering Center, University of Wisconsin – Madison, USA
8Global Modelling and Assimilation Office, Goddard Space Flight Center, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Greenbelt MD, USA
9Institute of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, National Research Council of Italy, Bologna, Italy
10European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, Reading, UK
11Earth Observation Research Center, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Tsukuba, Japan
12Japan Meteorological Agency, Tokyo, Japan
13Space Sciences and Engineering, Golden CO, USA
14Remote Sensing Technology Institute, German Aerospace Center, Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany
15Remote Sensing Systems, Santa Rosa CA, USA
16Institute for Space Sciences, Free University of Berlin, Berlin, Germany
17CUNY Remote Sensing Science and Technology Institute, City College of New York, New York NY, USA
18Environmental Modeling Center, NCEP/NWS/NOAA, NCWCP, College Park MD, USA
Abstract. The Global Energy and Water cycle Exchanges (GEWEX) Data and Assessments Panel (GDAP) initiated the GEWEX Water Vapor Assessment (G-VAP), which has the main objectives to quantify the current state of the art in water vapour products being constructed for climate applications and to support the selection process of suitable water vapour products by GDAP for its production of globally consistent water and energy cycle products. During the construction of the G-VAP data archive, freely available and mature satellite and reanalysis data records with a minimum temporal coverage of 10 years were considered. The archive contains total column water vapour (TCWV) as well as specific humidity and temperature at four pressure levels (1000, 700, 500, 300 hPa) from 22 different data records. All data records were remapped to a regular longitude–latitude grid of 2°  ×  2°. The archive consists of four different folders: 22 TCWV data records covering the period 2003–2008, 11 TCWV data records covering the period 1988–2008, as well as 7 specific humidity and 7 temperature data records covering the period 1988–2009. The G-VAP data archive is referenced under the following digital object identifier (doi): https://doi.org/10.5676/EUM_SAF_CM/GVAP/V001. Within G-VAP, the characterization of water vapour products is, among other ways, achieved through intercomparisons of the considered data records, as a whole and grouped into three classes of predominant retrieval condition: clear-sky, cloudy-sky and all-sky. Associated results are shown using the 22 TCWV data records. The standard deviations among the 22 TCWV data records have been analysed and exhibit distinct maxima over central Africa and the tropical warm pool (in absolute terms) as well as over the poles and mountain regions (in relative terms). The variability in TCWV within each class can be large and prohibits conclusions about systematic differences in TCWV between the classes.
Citation: Schröder, M., Lockhoff, M., Fell, F., Forsythe, J., Trent, T., Bennartz, R., Borbas, E., Bosilovich, M. G., Castelli, E., Hersbach, H., Kachi, M., Kobayashi, S., Kursinski, E. R., Loyola, D., Mears, C., Preusker, R., Rossow, W. B., and Saha, S.: The GEWEX Water Vapor Assessment archive of water vapour products from satellite observations and reanalyses, Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 10, 1093-1117, https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-10-1093-2018, 2018.
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Short summary
This publication presents results achieved within the GEWEX Water Vapor Assessment (G-VAP). An overview of available water vapour data records based on satellite observations and reanalysis is given. If a minimum temporal coverage of 10 years is applied, 22 data records remain. These form the G-VAP data archive, which contains total column water vapour, specific humidity profiles and temperature profiles. The G-VAP data archive is designed to ease intercomparison and climate model evaluation.
This publication presents results achieved within the GEWEX Water Vapor Assessment (G-VAP). An...
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