Gail Skofronick-Jackson is the Deputy Project Scientist for GPM at Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. She specializes in the remote sensing of snow, and is currently in Bangor, Maine where the DC-8 airborne research laboratory is stationed for the GCPEx campaign. She wrote to us over the weekend about Saturday's flight to get background measurements from no-snow conditions.
During the GPM pre-launch period physically-based snowfall retrieval algorithms are in an active phase of development. Further refinement and testing of these emerging algorithms requires the collection of targeted ground-validation datasets in snowing environments. This document describes a field campaign effort designed to provide both new datasets and physical insights related to the snowfall process- especially as they relate to the incorporation of appropriate physics into GPM snowfall retrieval algorithms.
Observations of the space-time variability of precipitation around the globe are imperative for understanding how climate change affects the global energy and water cycle (GWEC) in terms of changes in regional precipitation characteristics (type, frequency, intensity), as well as extreme hydrologic events, such as floods and droughts. The GWEC is driven by a host of complex processes and interactions, many of which are not yet well understood. Precipitation, which converts atmospheric water vapor into rain and snow, is a central element of the GWEC.
Parsivel Distrometer Results presented at the American Geophysical Union, Spring 2007.