By reducing the atmospheric visibility, fog events have strong impacts on several humans activities. Transport security, military operations, air quality forecast and solar energy production are critical activities considering fog dissipation time as a high valuable information.
Fog dissipation occurs through these two following processes. (1) An adiabatic cloud elevation converts the fog into a low stratus, increasing the visibility at ground level while keeping an overcast sky. (2) A radiative warming can break through a large continuous fog deck. Then, the cleared area increases progressively by heating the ground of the neighboured fog covered area.
These two events are particularly difficult to forecast using NWP models as many non-linear local processes at short-time scale are involved. Moreover, current network of fog presence sensors is too scarce to analyse and/or anticipate the phenomena. Subsequent images of geostationary meteorological satellite offer a high temporal resolution that enables to monitor large fog decks and detect punctual clear areas that induce dissipation (case 2). However, fog detection using satellite images suffers from a lack of distinction between fog and very low stratus.
In this work, we explored the potential of MSG SEVIRI radiometer through radiance observations and more advanced cloud products to analyse fog events effectively observed at the SIRTA atmospheric observatory (Palaiseau, France). We assumed that, during these events, pixels classified as “very low cloud” according to SAF-NWC algorithm were covered by fog. We monitored the evolution of these pixels using a cloud index derived from HRV channels, providing a more detailed spatial distribution of cloud cover during day time. We analysed the evolution of brightness temperature spatial gradient from the SEVIRI infrared window channel (IR 10.8µm). We isolated cases where ground warming situation could anticipate an irreversible fog dissipation. Then we deduced some fog dissipation forecasting principles.
This approach has the potential to provide to users information on morning fog sustainability with a higher accuracy and finer temporal resolution than NWP. Ongoing work focuses on characterizing favourable situations for accurate forecasts, while further predictors are investigated using recent products providing a smart distinction between fog and low stratus using SEVIRI images.
How to cite: Cros, S., Haeffelin, M., Toledo, F., Jean-Charles, D., and Jordi, B.: Fog dissipation through ground warming monitored by satellite image : an approach to support regional forecasting , EMS Annual Meeting 2021, online, 6–10 Sep 2021, EMS2021-361, https://doi.org/10.5194/ems2021-361, 2021.