21 October 2014 Analysis of microphysical processes in fog
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Abstract
The microphysical processes in fog are examined based on an analysis of four fog events captured by the in-situ and remote sensing synergy at the Cabauw Experimental Site for Atmospheric Research (CESAR) in the western part of the Netherlands. A 35 GHz cloud radar at CESAR has been used in “fog mode” for the first time in the campaign. In this paper, the microphysical parameterization of fog is first introduced as the basis for analyzing the microphysical processes in the lifecycle of fog. The general microphysical characteristics of the four fog events are studied and key microphysical parameters (droplet number concentration, liquid water content, mean radius, and spectral standard deviation) related to fog are found lower than those in other sites due to the low aerosol concentration at Cabauw. The dominant processes in fog are investigated from the relationships among the key microphysical parameters. The positive correlations of each two parameters in lifecycle stages of a stratus-fog case suggest the dominant scheme in fog is droplet activation with subsequent hygroscopic growth and/or droplet evaporation, which is also supported by the combined observations of visibility and radar reflectivity. The shape of fog drop size distribution regularly broadens and then narrows in the whole lifecycle. However, other mechanisms could exist, although not dominating. Collision-coalescence is a significant factor for the continued growth of big fog droplets when they have reached certain sizes in the mature stage. In the datasets, the collision-coalescence process could be distinguished from the unusual negative correlations among the key microphysical parameters in the lifecycle of another stratus-fog case, and the temporal evolutions of droplet number concentration, mean radius, spectra width, visibility and radar reflectivity show the evidence of it.
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Yunlong Li, Peter Hoogeboom, Herman W. J. Russchenberg, H. Klein Baltink, "Analysis of microphysical processes in fog", Proc. SPIE 9242, Remote Sensing of Clouds and the Atmosphere XIX; and Optics in Atmospheric Propagation and Adaptive Systems XVII, 924217 (21 October 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2067175; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2067175
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