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High Resolution Dynamics Limb Sounder

Cirrus in the upper troposphere

This picture displays the frequency of occurrence of cirrus in the upper troposphere during April 2007 as observed by the HIRDLS and CALIPSO experiments. The gratifying aspect of this graph is that fine spatial resolution features in cloud occurrence are readily apparent in both graphs. This wealth of information on a monthly basis was not available to the research community in previous years due to the lesser number of observations inherent with solar occultation experiments and the coarser vertical resolution of previous experiments. This cirrus is involved in the physical processes which modulate the transport of water vapor into the stratosphere. This geospatial data can be used on a monthly basis to study how cirrus varies in the upper troposphere, a stringent test for global circulation – microphysics models.