A surface radiation climatology across two Meteosat satellite generations

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Long-term observations of the surface radiation budget are essential for climate monitoring, climate model evaluation and solar energy applications. The Satellite Application Facility on Climate Monitoring (CM SAF) released a climate data record (CDR) of global and direct surface irradiance as well as effective cloud albedo derived from observations of the Meteosat First Generation satellites (MFG, 1983-2005). This study presents an extension of this CDR using measurements from the Meteosat Second Generation satellites (MSG, 2004-present). This extended surface radiation dataset spans nearly 30. years of data and, therefore, is in its uniquely high temporal and spatial resolution a valuable contribution to the climate community.In order to enable climatological consistency and homogeneity, the retrieval algorithm had to be modified for MSG: 1. The two narrowband visible channels of the MSG satellites are combined to simulate the MFG broadband visible channel; 2. The maximum cloud reflectance is empirically adjusted to account for the differences in the dynamic range of MSG compared to MFG.The extended dataset is tested for homogeneity and no significant breaks are detected during the overlap period of 2004-2005. Validation of the extended global radiation dataset against ground based observations from the Baseline Surface Radiation Network yields a mean monthly absolute bias of 8.15Wm-2. This complies with the target accuracy threshold of 15Wm-2 defined by the Global Climate Observing System.Global radiation has an overall positive, and significant, trend over the Meteosat disk which is mainly due to a negative trend in the effective cloud albedo, i.e., a decrease in cloudiness. Trends due to changes in the clear sky radiation are small and only induced by trends in the water vapor fields. Trends caused by changes in the direct effects of atmospheric aerosol are not represented because an aerosol climatology is used. © 2013.




Posselt, R., Mueller, R., Trentmann, J., Stockli, R., & Liniger, M. A. (2014). A surface radiation climatology across two Meteosat satellite generations. Remote Sensing of Environment, 142, 103–110. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rse.2013.11.007

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