CloudSat Cloud Features (CFs)
Using the same event based data guidance philosophy, the Cloud Features (CFs) are defined with the contiguous cloud pixels in CloudSat GeoPROF products. Some of the characteristics of each CF are summarized, including cloud top, bottom, maximum horizontal distance (because CloudSat only provide a vertical cross section of clouds as shown in the left figure, the size of cloud can be inferred from the maximum horizontal coverage of the cloud), vertical profile of maximum reflectivity, vertical profile of horizontal coverage of -20, -10, 0, 10 dBZ etc.
The immediate advantage of CFs is to search for the interesting cases from thousands of orbits (see the online tool provided below). This dataset has great potential in the research and may help answer a lot of questions, such as: what kind of clouds contribute the cloud coverage at 10 km? What sizes does a polar stratospheric cloud most likely have? etc.
CloudSat CFs data sharing
Currently we have processed two years (200606-200806) of CloudSat data with large amount of CFs. Because these data and the algoritm are still preliminary, we do not distribute them on the ftp server. However, for research purposes, we are glad to share them with anyone who is interested. Please contact me for details.
Search large clouds (with at least 1000 contiguous pixels) observed by CloudSat in 200606-201104