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Sherwood, S.C., Chae, J., McGill, M., and Minnis, P. (2003). Deep convective cloud top heights during CRYSTAL-FACE. Eos Trans. AGU, 84(46), Fall Meet. Suppl. 2003, Abstract # A22A-1058

We present comparisons between deep cumulus cloud top heights estimated by three methods during CRYSTAL-FACE: passive infrared radiance observed by GOES, the ER-2 CPL lidar, and MISR stereoscopic retrievals. We find that cloud top heights from GOES are somewhat underestimated. We also present a climatology of top heights by blending these platforms, obtaining thorough coverage from GOES but correcting the observations using discrepancies observed with colocated MISR (which has sparse sampling of all cloud types) and CPL (which has even more limited sampling, but highest accuracy) observations. Finally, we show that day-to-day variations in cloud top penetration over the Florida peninsula appear to be related to changes in CAPE, but that land-ocean and diurnal differences in cloud top penetrations cannot be explained by differences in CAPE.

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Updated: 14-Jan-2005