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Shortwave Cloud and Aerosol Radiative Forcings and Their Effects on the Vertical Local Heating/Cooling Rates

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DOI: 10.4236/acs.2013.33035    2,991 Downloads   4,908 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

An analysis of atmospheric SW-radiative forcing and local heating/cooling rate is made using a one year temporal and vertical profiles of aerosol and cloud over Yaoundé (11.51°E, 3.83°N). It appears that the direct influence of aerosols on the surface compared to the TOA can be 3 times larger. Annual mean value obtained at 559 mb altitude is +27.74 W/m2 with range from 0 to +43 W/m2. At 904 mb, we obtained an annual mean of 46.22 W/m2 with range from 65 to 9 W/m2. Frequency distribution indicates that more than 95% of ARF are between +10 and +70 W/m2 at 559 mb (upper limit of UL), and more than 85% of ARF are between 70 and 10 W/m2 at 904 mb (upper limit of PBL). This sign change is explained by the fact that the backscattering peaks at the upper limit of the aerosol PBL layer. The maximum CRF is noted at TOA where it reaches 600 W/m2 based on the time interval and the structure of clouds. The highest values occur between 11.50 and 13.50 LST. Clouds lead to a general heating of the entire atmospheric column with a much greater effect near the surface. Aerosols effect on the heating rate profile show strong cooling during the day for the lower atmosphere, with slight heating at the upper atmosphere. This cooling contribution generally increases from the surface and peacks at the upper boundary of aerosol layer where reflectivity is the most important. Depending on the moment of the day, average heating effect of clouds peacks at surface or within the middle troposphere due to the absorption by clouds particles. Vertical profiles deeply evolve exhibiting differences that exceed 3 K/day according to altitude from one hour to another during a given mean solar day.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

L. Nguimdo and D. Njomo, "Shortwave Cloud and Aerosol Radiative Forcings and Their Effects on the Vertical Local Heating/Cooling Rates," Atmospheric and Climate Sciences, Vol. 3 No. 3, 2013, pp. 337-347. doi: 10.4236/acs.2013.33035.

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