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17 October 2013 Investigation of boundary layer dynamics, dust and volcanic ash clouds with laser ceilometer
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Abstract
The main purpose of eye-safe laser ceilometers is regular reporting of cloud base height, vertical visibility, and cloud cover. These instruments operate unattended in harsh weather conditions. The application of state-of-the-art electronics increases the quality of backscatter profiles and thus qualifies modern ceilometers for applications beyond cloud base detection. The single lens optics of the ceilometers introduced in this paper results in a compact and robust design and enables their application in campaigns monitoring climate change effects. That is why three of the German Terrestrial Environmental Observatories (TERENO) run by the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology are equipped with a ceilometer. The Technical University of Denmark (DTU) utilizes such an instrument to study arctic cloud formation at Station Nord, Greenland. Recent applications include site assessment for solar energy applications in the Arabic Peninsula and monitoring of Sahara dust cloud and biomass burning plume events over Germany. Backward trajectory calculations with the HYSPLIT trajectory model provided by the NOAA Air Resources Laboratory have been carried out to investigate possible sources, including wood fires in southern France and eruptions of the Eyjafjallajökull and Puyehue- Cordón Caulle volcanoes.
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Christoph Münkel, Klaus Schäfer, and Stefan Emeis "Investigation of boundary layer dynamics, dust and volcanic ash clouds with laser ceilometer", Proc. SPIE 8890, Remote Sensing of Clouds and the Atmosphere XVIII; and Optics in Atmospheric Propagation and Adaptive Systems XVI, 88900B (17 October 2013); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2029039
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