Abstract

A slant path method is used to derive vertical profiles of atmospheric absorption and backscatter coefficients from eleven months of coherent pulsed CO2 Doppler lidar measurements in Huntsville, Ala. Good agreement is found between lidar- and radiosonde-derived absorption profiles. A strong seasonal variation of backscatter and absorption is evident throughout the lower troposphere as well as variations on a wide range of finer temporal and spatial scales. Typical summer and winter backscatter values in the boundary layer fall in the 10−7–10−8- and 10−8–10−9-m−1 sr−1 range, respectively. Measurements beyond the lower troposphere are hampered by modest pulse energy and lidar beam absorption; however, backscatter values as small as 4 × 10−11 m−1 sr−1 occasionally are observed at midtropospheric levels during the winter months when absorption is minimal. A monomodal lognormal backscatter distribution is found within the lower boundary layer; at higher levels, evidence is found of a bimodal lognormal distribution.

© 1985 Optical Society of America

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