Characteristics of satellite-derived clear-sky atmospheric temperature inversion strength in the Arctic, 1980-96

Yinghui Liu, Jeffrey R. Key, Axel Schweiger, Jennifer Francis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations

Abstract

The low-level atmospheric temperature inversion is a dominant feature of the Arctic atmosphere throughout most of the year. Meteorological stations that provide radiosonde data are sparsely distributed across the Arctic, and therefore provide little information on the spatial distribution of temperature inversions. Satellite-borne sensors provide an opportunity to fill the observational gap. In this study, a 17-yr time series, 1980-96, of clear-sky temperature inversion strength during the cold season is derived from High Resolution Infrared Radiation Sounder (HIRS) data using a two-channel statistical method. The satellite-derived clear-sky inversion strength monthly mean and trends agree well with radiosonde data. Both increasing and decreasing trends are found in the cold season for different areas. It is shown that there is a strong coupling between changes in surface temperature and changes in inversion strength, but that trends in some areas may be a result of advection aloft rather than warming or cooling at the surface.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4902-4913
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Climate
Volume19
Issue number19
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Atmospheric Science

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