Disclaimer: This material is being kept online for historical purposes. Though accurate at the time of publication, it is no longer being updated. The page may contain broken links or outdated information, and parts may not function in current web browsers. Visit https://espo.nasa.gov for information about our current projects.


Evaluation of the radiation budget with a regional climate model over Europe...

Chiacchio, M., F. Solmon, F. Giorgi, P. Stackhouse, and M. Wild (2015), Evaluation of the radiation budget with a regional climate model over Europe and inspection of dimming and brightening, J. Geophys. Res., 120, 21, doi:10.1002/2014JD022497.

Shortwave (SW) and longwave (LW) components of the radiation budget at the surface and top of atmosphere (TOA) are evaluated in the regional climate model RegCM version 4 driven by European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts Reanalysis over Europe. The simulated radiative components were evaluated with those from satellite-based products and reanalysis. At the surface the model overestimated the absorbed solar radiation but was compensated by a greater loss of thermal energy while both SW and LW TOA net fluxes were underestimated representing too little solar energy absorbed and too little outgoing thermal energy. Averaged biases in radiative parameters were generally within 25 W m2, were dependent on differences by as much as 0.2 in cloud fraction, surface, and planetary albedo and less dependent on surface temperature associated with the surface longwave parameters, and are in line with other studies. Clear-sky fluxes showed better results when cloud cover differences had no influence. We also found a clear distinction between land versus water with smaller biases over land at the surface and over water at the TOA due to differences in cloud fraction and albedo. Finally, we inspected dimming and brightening for the period 1979–2010 with an indication for dimming early in the time series (i.e., 1979–1987) and brightening after, which agrees with surface-based observations. After 2000, however, a decrease in the brightening by more than 1 order of magnitude was evident which is in contrast to the continued brightening found in surface records and satellite-derived estimates.

PDF of Publication: 
Download from publisher's website.
Research Program: 
Radiation Science Program (RSP)