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Raman lidar observations of cloud liquid water

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Abstract

We report the design and the performances of a Raman lidar for long-term monitoring of tropospheric aerosol backscattering and extinction coefficients, water vapor mixing ratio, and cloud liquid water. We focus on the system’s capabilities of detecting Raman backscattering from cloud liquid water. After describing the system components, along with the current limitations and options for improvement, we report examples of observations in the case of low-level cumulus clouds. The measurements of the cloud liquid water content, as well as the estimations of the cloud droplet effective radii and number densities, obtained by combining the extinction coefficient and cloud water content within the clouds, are critically discussed.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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