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Deriving a sea surface temperature record suitable for climate change research from the along-track scanning radiometers

Deriving a sea surface temperature record suitable for climate change research from the along-track scanning radiometers
Deriving a sea surface temperature record suitable for climate change research from the along-track scanning radiometers
We describe the approach to be adopted for a major new initiative to derive a homogeneous record of sea surface temperature for 1991–2007 from the observations of the series of three along-track scanning radiometers (ATSRs). This initiative is called (A)RC: (Advanced) ATSR Re-analysis for Climate. The main objectives are to reduce regional biases in retrieved sea surface temperature (SST) to less than 0.1 K for all global oceans, while creating a very homogenous record that is stable in time to within 0.05 K decade-1, with maximum independence of the record from existing analyses of SST used in climate change research. If these stringent targets are achieved, this record will enable significantly improved estimates of surface temperature trends and variability of sufficient quality to advance questions of climate change attribution, climate sensitivity and historical reconstruction of surface temperature changes. The approach includes development of new, consistent estimators for SST for each of the ATSRs, and detailed analysis of overlap periods. Novel aspects of the approach include generation of multiple versions of the record using alternative channel sets and cloud detection techniques, to assess for the first time the effect of such choices. There will be extensive effort in quality control, validation and analysis of the impact on climate SST data sets. Evidence for the plausibility of the 0.1 K target for systematic error is reviewed, as is the need for alternative cloud screening methods in this context.
0273-1177
1-11
Merchant, C.J.
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Llewellyn-Jones, D.
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Saunders, R.W.
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Rayner, N.A.
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Kent, E.C.
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Old, C.P.
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Berry, D.I.
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Birks, A.R.
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Blackmore, T.
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Corlett, G.K.
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Embury, O.
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Jay, V.
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Kennedy, J.
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Mutlow, C.T.
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Nightingale, T.J.
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O'Carroll, A.G.
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Pritchard, M.J.
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Remedios, J.J.
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Tett, S.B.F.
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Merchant, C.J.
834a7bd1-42dd-47e9-b21b-b4dd639646c6
Llewellyn-Jones, D.
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Saunders, R.W.
9196f71f-fd7b-45a6-8e15-61ad6b84891f
Rayner, N.A.
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Kent, E.C.
ea23f6f0-ccf6-4702-a5c9-184e9c5d4427
Old, C.P.
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Berry, D.I.
55ffc590-f459-49c8-aecf-842d65aeb0fb
Birks, A.R.
8e9b4811-7e33-42d4-9bb8-c5b309e6b6a0
Blackmore, T.
05087c45-a814-44d8-bac5-1670f9a60abd
Corlett, G.K.
76586378-6b7e-4efa-be86-5cef5d0055ec
Embury, O.
8f13133a-780d-4b94-9bee-7544fb41d4e7
Jay, V.
454eef35-c042-4712-b4a0-03b2ede8227e
Kennedy, J.
5cee1dd0-290d-41e5-91a6-5f3ebd3dc5bb
Mutlow, C.T.
607d3ead-aa42-4f6a-8683-caa751d7737f
Nightingale, T.J.
cac522f6-c705-4080-9d7d-a1d1d6a3a8ab
O'Carroll, A.G.
042c2b05-5cfd-4459-bbb1-c72f86915048
Pritchard, M.J.
689cdef0-fc64-4d17-920f-fd6ca87e466f
Remedios, J.J.
4747166f-cf81-44dc-9632-a477aacfe687
Tett, S.B.F.
530fa764-700b-45b2-a877-0003383fb91a

Merchant, C.J., Llewellyn-Jones, D., Saunders, R.W., Rayner, N.A., Kent, E.C., Old, C.P., Berry, D.I., Birks, A.R., Blackmore, T., Corlett, G.K., Embury, O., Jay, V., Kennedy, J., Mutlow, C.T., Nightingale, T.J., O'Carroll, A.G., Pritchard, M.J., Remedios, J.J. and Tett, S.B.F. (2008) Deriving a sea surface temperature record suitable for climate change research from the along-track scanning radiometers. Advances in Space Research, 41 (1), 1-11. (doi:10.1016/j.asr.2007.07.041).

Record type: Article

Abstract

We describe the approach to be adopted for a major new initiative to derive a homogeneous record of sea surface temperature for 1991–2007 from the observations of the series of three along-track scanning radiometers (ATSRs). This initiative is called (A)RC: (Advanced) ATSR Re-analysis for Climate. The main objectives are to reduce regional biases in retrieved sea surface temperature (SST) to less than 0.1 K for all global oceans, while creating a very homogenous record that is stable in time to within 0.05 K decade-1, with maximum independence of the record from existing analyses of SST used in climate change research. If these stringent targets are achieved, this record will enable significantly improved estimates of surface temperature trends and variability of sufficient quality to advance questions of climate change attribution, climate sensitivity and historical reconstruction of surface temperature changes. The approach includes development of new, consistent estimators for SST for each of the ATSRs, and detailed analysis of overlap periods. Novel aspects of the approach include generation of multiple versions of the record using alternative channel sets and cloud detection techniques, to assess for the first time the effect of such choices. There will be extensive effort in quality control, validation and analysis of the impact on climate SST data sets. Evidence for the plausibility of the 0.1 K target for systematic error is reviewed, as is the need for alternative cloud screening methods in this context.

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Published date: 2008

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 50051
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/50051
ISSN: 0273-1177
PURE UUID: 133601be-81bc-4a4e-bef7-80cd84992201

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Date deposited: 16 Jan 2008
Last modified: 24 May 2023 16:51

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Contributors

Author: C.J. Merchant
Author: D. Llewellyn-Jones
Author: R.W. Saunders
Author: N.A. Rayner
Author: E.C. Kent
Author: C.P. Old
Author: D.I. Berry
Author: A.R. Birks
Author: T. Blackmore
Author: G.K. Corlett
Author: O. Embury
Author: V. Jay
Author: J. Kennedy
Author: C.T. Mutlow
Author: T.J. Nightingale
Author: A.G. O'Carroll
Author: M.J. Pritchard
Author: J.J. Remedios
Author: S.B.F. Tett

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