Combination of ceilometer and cloud radar measurements for aerosol and cloud detection

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Full detection range.

The combination of ceilometer and cloud radar measurements at Mace Head provides information on the vertical distribution of aerosol layers in near real-time (updated every hour). The depolarisation data of the cloud radar can be used to distinguish spherical from non-spherical particles. Volcanic ash and mineral dust are known to be non-spherical. However, the cloud radar is limited to large particles. Aerosol layers with sufficiently large non-spherical particles are classified as such (red scale). This might include insects. Aerosol layers plotted in grey do not necessarily consist only of spherical particles. It rather indicates, that the particles are too small to be detected by the radar.

More Details on the retrieval and uncertainties (pdf).

Remote Sensing at Mace Head

The Remote Sensing Division of the Mace Head Atmospheric Research Station is supported by Irish Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Irish Aviation Authority (IAA), and Science Foundation Ireland (SFI).

The algorithm for aerosol detection has been developed by the Centre for Climate & Air Pollution Studies (C-CAPS) in Galway.