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Modification of an empirical short-wave radiation formula using satellite observations
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  • Description:
    Recent estimates of the brightness and albedo of the earth-atmosphere system, averaged for individual months from meteorological-satellite data, are used to test-and modify a formula for the short-wave radiation budget. The formula is used in a numerical model designed for long-range forecasting experiments. Whereas previously the model formula assumed that the average transmissivity of the clouds is a slowly-varying function of latitude alone, the tests discussed here show that there is a linear-inverse relation between cloudiness and transmissivity. This is due mainly to a strong tendency for the average thickness of the different cloud types, as well as for the relative frequency of the more vertically-developed types, to increase as the monthly-mean cloudiness increases. This modification has an important effect on the heat budget of the earth atmosphere system, and is easy to introduce into the model.
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