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  • Liu, Yuqin; De Leeuw, Gerrit; Kerminen, Veli-Matti; Zhang, Jiahua; Zhou, Putian; Nie, Wei; Qi, Ximeng; Hong, Juan; Wang, Yonghong; Ding, Aijun; Guo, Huadong; Kruger, Olaf; Kulmala, Markku; Petaja, Tuukka (2017)
    Aerosol effects on low warm clouds over the Yangtze River Delta (YRD, eastern China) are examined using co-located MODIS, CALIOP and CloudSat observations. By taking the vertical locations of aerosol and cloud layers into account, we use simultaneously observed aerosol and cloud data to investigate relationships between cloud properties and the amount of aerosol particles (using aerosol optical depth, AOD, as a proxy). Also, we investigate the impact of aerosol types on the variation of cloud properties with AOD. Finally, we explore how meteorological conditions affect these relationships using ERA-Interim reanalysis data. This study shows that the relation between cloud properties and AOD depends on the aerosol abundance, with a different behaviour for low and high AOD (i.e. AOD0.35). This applies to cloud droplet effective radius (CDR) and cloud fraction (CF), but not to cloud optical thickness (COT) and cloud top pressure (CTP). COT is found to decrease when AOD increases, which may be due to radiative effects and retrieval artefacts caused by absorbing aerosol. Conversely, CTP tends to increase with elevated AOD, indicating that the aerosol is not always prone to expand the vertical extension. It also shows that the COT-CDR and CWP (cloud liquid water path)-CDR relationships are not unique, but affected by atmospheric aerosol loading. Furthermore, separation of cases with either polluted dust or smoke aerosol shows that aerosol-cloud interaction (ACI) is stronger for clouds mixed with smoke aerosol than for clouds mixed with dust, which is ascribed to the higher absorption efficiency of smoke than dust. The variation of cloud properties with AOD is analysed for various relative humidity and boundary layer thermodynamic and dynamic conditions, showing that high relative humidity favours larger cloud droplet particles and increases cloud formation, irrespective of vertical or horizontal level. Stable atmospheric conditions enhance cloud cover horizontally. However, unstable atmospheric conditions favour thicker and higher clouds. Dynamically, upward motion of air parcels can also facilitate the formation of thicker and higher clouds. Overall, the present study provides an understanding of the impact of aerosols on cloud properties over the YRD. In addition to the amount of aerosol particles (or AOD), evidence is provided that aerosol types and ambient environmental conditions need to be considered to understand the observed relationships between cloud properties and AOD.
  • Heikkilä, Anu; Makelä, Jakke Sakari; Lakkala, Kaisa; Meinander, Outi; Kaurola, Jussi; Koskela, Tapani; Karhu, Juha Matti; Karppinen, Tomi; Kyro, Esko; De Leeuw, Gerrit (2016)
    The two Brewer spectrophotometers of the Finnish Meteorological Institute at Jokioinen and Sodankyla have been operated according to the highest levels of the WMO/GAW (World Meteorological Organization/Global Atmosphere Watch) recommendations with rigorous quality control and quality assurance. The calibration of the instruments is based on annual recalibrations of primary standard lamps in the VTT MIKES Metrology National Standards Laboratory in Finland and an exhaustive measurement program with measurements of standard and working lamps in the on-site optical laboratories. Over the years, the maintenance of the calibration has produced data sets of approximately 2000 lamp scans for both instruments. An extensive re-examination of the lamp measurements and the response of the spectrophotometers was carried out. The primary standard lamps were found to age on an average rate of 0.3% per burn. The responsivity at wavelength 311 nm was found to exhibit both long-term and short-term changes. The overall long-term change was declining. In addition, abrupt changes of as large as 25% were detected. The short-term changes were found to fluctuate on time frames shorter than the interval between the measurements of the primary standard lamps. This underlines the importance of the use of more frequently measured working standard lamps.