Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Climate Research Facility and NASA Study Storm Clouds in Oklahoma


On April 22, Earth Day, the Midlatitude Continental Convective Clouds Experiment (MC3E) began obtaining comprehensive measurements of storm clouds from the ground and sky. This experiment takes full advantage of new ARM instrumentation—particularly the new 3-D precipitation radars—installed throughout the Southern Great Plains (SGP) site, supplemented by additional radars, precipitation instrumentation, a weather balloon network, and aircraft measurements provided by NASA. The goal of MC3E is to provide the most complete characterization dataset for convective cloud systems, precipitation, and their environment that has ever been obtained, providing details about cumulus clouds that have never before been available for weather and climate models. Compared to previous campaigns of a similar nature, this dataset will be significantly more detailed due the addition of new and upgraded instruments installed at the SGP site in the past year through funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.