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https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2017-142
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
17 May 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is under review for the journal Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT).
Development and Application of a Backscatter Lidar Forward Operator for Quantitative Validation of Aerosol Dispersion Models and Future Data Assimilation
Armin Geisinger1, Andreas Behrendt1, Volker Wulfmeyer1, Jens Strohbach1, Jochen Förstner2, and Roland Potthast2 1Institute of Physics and Meteorology, University of Hohenheim, Germany
2Headquarter of the German Weather Service, Offenbach, Germany
Abstract. A new backscatter-lidar forward operator was developed which is based on the distinct calculation of the aerosols' backscatter and extinction properties. The forward operator was adapted to the COSMO-ART ash dispersion simulation of the Eyjafjallajökull eruption in 2010. While the particle number concentration was provided as model output variable, the scattering properties of each individual particle type had to be determined by extensive scattering calculations. Sensitivity studies were performed to estimate the uncertainties related to the assumed particle properties. Therefore, scattering calculations for several types of non-spherical particles required the usage of t-matrix routines. Due to the distinct calculation of the backscatter and extinction properties of the models' volcanic ash size classes, the sensitivity studies could be resolved to each size class individually which is not the case for forward models based on a fixed lidar ratio. Finally, the forward modeled lidar profiles have been compared to ACL measurements both qualitatively and quantitatively while the attenuated backscatter coefficient was chosen as common physical quantity. As the ACL measurements were not calibrated automatically, their calibration had to be performed using CALIPSOs/CALIOP measurements. A slight overestimation of the model predicted volcanic ash number density was observed. By manually reducing the model predicted ash number density, the effect of simple data assimilation methods could be demonstrated. Major issues for future data assimilation of ACL data have been identified. The introduced forward operator offers the flexibility to be adapted to a multitude of model systems and measurement set-ups.

Citation: Geisinger, A., Behrendt, A., Wulfmeyer, V., Strohbach, J., Förstner, J., and Potthast, R.: Development and Application of a Backscatter Lidar Forward Operator for Quantitative Validation of Aerosol Dispersion Models and Future Data Assimilation, Atmos. Meas. Tech. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2017-142, in review, 2017.
Armin Geisinger et al.
Armin Geisinger et al.
Armin Geisinger et al.

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Short summary
A new backscatter lidar forward operator for an aerosol-chemistry-transport model is presented which allows for a quantitative comparison of model output and backscatter lidar measurements from existing networks with unprecedented detail. By applying the forward operator, aerosol distribution model simulations of the 2010 Eyjafjallajökull eruption could be compared both quantitatively and qualitatively to measurements of the automated ceilometer lidar network in Germany.
A new backscatter lidar forward operator for an aerosol-chemistry-transport model is presented...
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