Key Climate Data Collected During the International Polar Year (2008)


A comprehensive dataset of microphysical and radiative properties of aerosols and clouds in the boundary layer near Barrow, Alaska was collected in April 2008 by DOE’s Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Climate Research Facility. The principal aim was to examine the effects of aerosols, including those generated by Asian wild fires, on clouds that contain both liquid and ice. Ground based measurements of aerosols, ice fog, precipitation and spectral shortwave radiation were complemented by aerial measurements of in situ clouds and aerosols resulting from more than 100 hours of data collection on 12 different days using an unprecedented number (41) of state-of-the-art cloud and aerosol instruments. The data is being used to link cloud microphysics, aerosol chemistry and optical properties, especially for ice and mixed-phase clouds, key regulators of arctic climate. Aerial measurements also contributed to understanding the performance of a cloud probe in ice cloud conditions. These data will be used to improve the representation of cloud and aerosol processes in models covering a variety of spatial and temporal scales and to determine the extent to which long-term surface-based measurements can provide retrievals of aerosols, clouds, precipitation and radiative heating in the Arctic.


“Indirect and Semi-Direct Aerosol Campaign (ISDAC): The Impact of Arctic Aerosols on Clouds,” accepted for publication in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, accepted August 2010.