Articles | Volume 11, issue 2
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 11, 457–463, 2011
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 11, 457–463, 2011

Research article 17 Jan 2011

Research article | 17 Jan 2011

Influence of convection and aerosol pollution on ice cloud particle effective radius

J. H. Jiang1, H. Su1, C. Zhai1, S. T. Massie2, M. R. Schoeberl3, P. R. Colarco4, S. Platnick4, Y. Gu5, and K.-N. Liou5 J. H. Jiang et al.
  • 1Jet propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA
  • 2National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, Colorado, USA
  • 3Science and Technology Corporation, Columbia, Maryland, USA
  • 4NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA
  • 5Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, USA

Abstract. Satellite observations show that ice cloud effective radius (re) increases with ice water content (IWC) but decreases with aerosol optical thickness (AOT). Using least-squares fitting to the observed data, we obtain an analytical formula to describe the variations of re with IWC and AOT for several regions with distinct characteristics of re-IWC-AOT relationships. As IWC directly relates to convective strength and AOT represents aerosol loading, our empirical formula provides a means to quantify the relative roles of dynamics and aerosols in controlling re in different geographical regions, and to establish a framework for parameterization of aerosol effects on re in climate models.

Final-revised paper