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Global identification of warm cloud microphysical processes with combined use...

Suzuki, K., and G. Stephens (2008), Global identification of warm cloud microphysical processes with combined use of A-Train observations, Geophys. Res. Lett., 35, L08805, doi:10.1029/2008GL033590.

The layer-mean radar reflectivity Z e observed by CloudSat and the columnar effective particle radius Re obtained from a combined microwave-shortwave analysis are combined to investigate the joint relationships between Z e and Re for warm clouds. Global statistics for seasonally averaged data reveals that radar reflectivities Z e less than about -10 dBZ tend to relate to the effective radius via a sixth-power dependency, corresponding to a constant number concentration implying that the condensation particle growth process mainly takes place within the cloud layer for Z e < -10 dBZ. For Z e > -10 dBZ, Z e depends on Re through a cubic relation, corresponding to a constant mass concentration implying coagulation as the dominant particle growth process. These microphysical regimes so identified are shown to be consistent with CloudSat-inferred rainfall rate.

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