2017-04-12: A geostationary product for near-real-time identification of high ice water content environments
We developed a satellite data product for identification of atmospheric environments with a high chance of the presence of high ice water content (IWC > > 1 g/m3). This High IWC mask is based on measurements of cloud properties using the cloud physical properties (CPP) algorithm applied to the geostationary Meteosat Second Generation (MSG) Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager (SEVIRI).
Evaluation of the High IWC mask with satellite measurements of active remote sensors of cloud properties (CLOUDSAT/CALIPSO combined in the DARDAR product) reveals that the High IWC mask is capable of detecting high IWC values > 1 g/m3 in the DARDAR profiles with a probability of detection of 60-80%. Biases were also identified, in particular a solar zenith angle (SZA) dependence that reduces the performance of the High IWC mask for SZAs > 60°. Verification statistics show that for the detection of High IWC a trade-off has to be made between better detection of High IWC scenes and more false detections, i.e. scenes identified by the High IWC mask that do not contain IWC > 1 g/m3. However, the large majority of these detections still contain IWC values between 0.1-1 g/m3.
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The High IWC mask has been developed as part of the High Altitude Ice Crystals project (HAIC, funded under the European Union FP7 program and led by AIRBUS Toulouse. The prime justification for the HAIC project is the risk high ice water content environments pose for (jet) aircraft flying at cruising altitudes, but for which the chain of events leading to incidents are still poorly understood, also from an atmospheric point of view. The SEVIRI High IWC mask can be viewed in near-real-time via the KNMI CPP and ADAGUC webportals (http://msgcpp.knmi.nl and http://adaguc.knmi.nl)