Publication Abstracts

Elsaesser et al. 2017

Elsaesser, G.S., C.W. O'Dell, M.D. Lebsock, R. Bennartz, and T.J. Greenwald, 2017: The Multi-Sensor Advanced Climatology of Liquid Water Path (MAC-LWP). J. Climate, 30, no. 24, 10193-10210, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0902.1.

The Multi-Sensor Advanced Climatology of Liquid Water Path (MAC-LWP), an updated and enhanced version of the University of Wisconsin (UWisc) cloud liquid water path (CLWP) climatology, currently provides 29 years (1988-2016) of monthly gridded (1°) oceanic CLWP information constructed using Remote Sensing Systems (RSS) inter-calibrated 0.25°-resolution retrievals. Satellite sources include SSM/I, TMI, AMSR-E, WindSat, SSMIS, AMSR-2 and GMI. To mitigate spurious CLWP trends, the climatology is corrected for drifting satellite overpass times by simultaneously solving for the monthly average CLWP and monthly-mean diurnal cycle. In addition to a longer record and six additional satellite products, major enhancements relative to the UWisc climatology include updating the input to version 7 RSS retrievals, a correction for a CLWP bias (based on matchups to clear-sky MODIS scenes), and the construction of a total (cloud+rain) liquid water path (TLWP) record for use in analyses of columnar liquid water in raining clouds. Because the microwave emission signal from cloud water is similar to that of precipitation-sized hydrometeors, greater uncertainty in the CLWP record is expected in regions of substantial precipitation. Therefore, the TLWP field can also be used as a quality-control screen, where uncertainty increases as the ratio of CLWP to TLWP decreases. For regions where confidence in CLWP is highest (i.e. CLWP:TLWP > 0.8), systematic differences in MAC CLWP relative to UWisc CLWP range from -15% (e.g. global oceanic stratocumulus decks) to +5-10% (e.g. portions of the higher-latitudes, storm tracks, and shallower convection regions straddling the ITCZ). The dataset is currently hosted at the Goddard Earth Science Data and Information Services Center (

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BibTeX Citation

  author={Elsaesser, G. S. and O'Dell, C. W. and Lebsock, M. D. and Bennartz, R. and Greenwald, T. J.},
  title={The Multi-Sensor Advanced Climatology of Liquid Water Path (MAC-LWP)},
  journal={Journal of Climate},

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RIS Citation

ID  - el08100s
AU  - Elsaesser, G. S.
AU  - O'Dell, C. W.
AU  - Lebsock, M. D.
AU  - Bennartz, R.
AU  - Greenwald, T. J.
PY  - 2017
TI  - The Multi-Sensor Advanced Climatology of Liquid Water Path (MAC-LWP)
JA  - J. Climate
JO  - Journal of Climate
VL  - 30
IS  - 24
SP  - 10193
EP  - 10210
DO  - 10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0902.1
ER  -

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