EGU21-7736, updated on 04 Mar 2021
EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Accuracy assessment of the joint CloudSat-CALIPSO global cloud amount based on the bootstrap confidence intervals

Andrzej Kotarba1 and Mateusz Solecki1,2
Andrzej Kotarba and Mateusz Solecki
  • 1Centrum Badan Kosmicznych PAN, Warszawa, Poland (
  • 2Department of Climatology, University of Warsaw

Vertically-resolved cloud amount is essential for understanding the Earth’s radiation budget. Joint CloudSat-CALIPSO, lidar-radar cloud climatology remains the only dataset providing such information globally. However, a specific sampling scheme (pencil-like swath, 16-day revisit) introduces an uncertainty to CloudSat-CALIPSO cloud amounts. In the research we assess those uncertainties in terms of a bootstrap confidence intervals. Five years (2006-2011) of the 2B-GEOPROF-LIDAR (version P2_R05) cloud product was examined, accounting for  typical spatial resolutions of a global grids (1.0°, 2.5°, 5.0°, 10.0°), four confidence levels of confidence interval (0.85, 0.90, 0.95, 0.99), and three time scales of mean cloud amount (annual, seasonal, monthly). Results proved that cloud amount accuracy of 1%, or 5%, is not achievable with the dataset, assuming a 5-year mean cloud amount, high (>0.95) confidence level, and fine spatial resolution (1º–2.5º). The 1% requirement was only met by ~6.5% of atmospheric volumes at 1º and 2.5º, while more tolerant criterion (5%) was met by 22.5% volumes at 1º, or 48.9% at 2.5º resolution. In order to have at least 99% of volumes meeting an accuracy criterion, the criterion itself would have to be lowered to ~20% for 1º data, or to ~8% for 2.5º data. Study also quantified the relation between confidence interval width, and spatial resolution, confidence level, number of observations. Cloud regime (mean cloud amount, and standard deviation of cloud amount) was found the most important factor impacting the width of confidence interval. The research has been funded by the National Science Institute of Poland grant no. UMO-2017/25/B/ST10/01787. This research has been supported in part by PL-Grid Infrastructure (a computing resources).

How to cite: Kotarba, A. and Solecki, M.: Accuracy assessment of the joint CloudSat-CALIPSO global cloud amount based on the bootstrap confidence intervals, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-7736,, 2021.

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