Articles | Volume 16, issue 16
Research article
26 Aug 2016
Research article |  | 26 Aug 2016

Measuring ice- and liquid-water properties in mixed-phase cloud layers at the Leipzig Cloudnet station

Johannes Bühl, Patric Seifert, Alexander Myagkov, and Albert Ansmann

Abstract. An analysis of the Cloudnet data set collected at Leipzig, Germany, with special focus on mixed-phase layered clouds is presented. We derive liquid- and ice-water content together with vertical motions of ice particles falling through cloud base. The ice mass flux is calculated by combining measurements of ice-water content and particle Doppler velocity. The efficiency of heterogeneous ice formation and its impact on cloud lifetime is estimated for different cloud-top temperatures by relating the ice mass flux and the liquid-water content at cloud top. Cloud radar measurements of polarization and Doppler velocity indicate that ice crystals formed in mixed-phase cloud layers with a geometrical thickness of less than 350 m are mostly pristine when they fall out of the cloud.

Short summary
We probe thin layered clouds with remote sensing instruments from ground in order to get insight into atmospheric processes like the formation of rain or snow. We think that the findings of our work can be used to improve climate and weather simulations. The present paper presents a new technique that can be used to detect the shape, fall speed and mass of ice particles falling from layered clouds. With such information the impact of cloud ice, e.g., on the lifetime of a cloud, can be estimated.
Final-revised paper