A decadal cirrus clouds climatology from ground-based and spaceborne lidars above the south of France (43.9° N–5.7° E)

  • Hoareau C
  • Keckhut P
  • Noel V
 et al. 
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Abstract

This study provides an analysis of cirrus cloud properties at midlatitude in the southern part of France from ground-based and spaceborne lidars. A climatology of cirrus cloud properties and their evolution over more than 12 yr is presented and compared to other mid-latitude climatological studies. Cirrus clouds occur similar to 37% of the total observation time and remain quasi-constant across seasons with a variation within similar to 5% around the mean occurrence. Similar results are obtained from CALIOP and the ground-based lidar, with a mean difference in occurrence of similar to 5% between both instruments. From the ground-based lidar data, a slight decrease in occurrence of similar to 3% per decade is observed but found statistically insignificant. Based on a clustering analysis of cirrus cloud parameters, three distinct classes have been identified and investigations concerning their origin are discussed. Properties of these different classes are analysed, showing that thin cirrus in the upper troposphere represent similar to 50% of cloud cover detected in summer and fall, decreasing by 15-20% for other seasons.

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Authors

  • C. Hoareau

  • P. Keckhut

  • V. Noel

  • H. Chepfer

  • J.-L. Baray

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