The purpose of this work is to compare top of the atmosphere (TOA) radiances as measured by the Geostationary Earth Radiation Budget (GERB) instrument on board the METEOSAT-8 (METEOSAT Second Generation) satellite to equivalent independent radiances obtained from radiative transfer simulations performed using surface and atmospheric measured parameters gathered during the GERB Surface Ground Validation Campaign at the Valencia Anchor Station (VAS) reference area in February 2004. In this paper we try to extend the methodology previously developed and tested for the NASA Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) instrument in the framework of the SEVIRI and GERB Cal/val Area for Large scale field ExperimentS (SCALES) project, to validate GERB much lower spatial resolution data (pixel size of the order of 60 x 60 km2 over the VAS). The study also includes the selection of atmospheric profiles from on-purpose radiosonde and GPS (Global Positioning System) data, a BRDF (Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function) estimation for the large-scale study area and Streamer radiative transfer simulations of TOA shortwave and longwave radiances.
The main objective of the SCALES Project is to exploit the unique opportunity offered by the recent launch of the first European METEOSAT Second Generation geostationary satellite (MSG-1) to generate and validate new radiation budget and cloud products provided by the GERB (Geostationary Earth Radiation Budget) instrument. SCALES’ specific objectives are: (i) definition and characterization of a large reasonably homogeneous area compatible to GERB pixel size (around 50 x 50 km2), (ii) validation of GERB TOA radiances and fluxes derived by means of angular distribution models, (iii) development of algorithms to estimate surface net radiation from GERB TOA measurements, and (iv) development of accurate methodologies to measure radiation flux divergence and analyze its influence on the thermal regime and dynamics of the atmosphere, also using GERB data. SCALES is highly innovative: it focuses on a new and unique space instrument and develops a new specific validation methodology for low resolution sensors that is based on the use of a robust reference meteorological station (Valencia Anchor Station) around which 3D high resolution meteorological fields are obtained from the MM5 Meteorological Model. During the 1st GERB Ground Validation Campaign (18th-24th June, 2003), CERES instruments on Aqua and Terra provided additional radiance measurements to support validation efforts. CERES instruments operated in the PAPS mode (Programmable Azimuth Plane Scanning) focusing the station. Ground measurements were taken by lidar, sun photometer, GPS precipitable water content, radiosounding ascents, Anchor Station operational meteorological measurements at 2m and 15m., 4 radiation components at 2m, and mobile stations to characterize a large area. In addition, measurements during LANDSAT overpasses on June 14th and 30th were also performed. These activities were carried out within the GIST (GERB International Science Team) framework, during GERB Commissioning Period.