Wakasa Bay: An AMSR Precipitation Validation Campaign

Elena S. Lobl

National Space Science and Technology Center, University of Alabama in Huntsville, Huntsville, Alabama

Kazumasa Aonashi

Meteorological Research Institute, Ibaraki, Japan

Brian Griffith, Christian Kummerow

Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado

Guosheng Liu

The Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida

Masataka Murakami

Meteorological Research Institute, Ibaraki, Japan

Thomas Wilheit

Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas


The "Wakasa Bay Experiment" was conducted in order to refine error models for oceanic precipitation from the Advanced Microwave Sounding Radiometer-Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) measurements and to develop algorithms for snowfall. The NASA P-3 aircraft was equipped with microwave radiometers, covering a frequency range of 10.7-340 GHz, and radars at 13.4, 35.6, and 94 GHz, and was deployed to Yokota Air Base in Japan for flights from 14 January to 3 February 2003. For four flight days (27-30 January) a Gulfstream II aircraft provided by Core Research for Environmental Science and Technology (CREST), carrying an extensive cloud physics payload and a twofrequency (23.8 and 31.4 GHz) microwave radiometer, joined the P-3 for coordinated flights. The Gulfstream II aircraft was part of the "Winter Mesoscale Convective Systems Observations over the Sea of Japan in 2003" ("WMO-03") field campaign sponsored by Japan Science and Technology Corporation (JST). Extensive data were taken, which addressed all of the experimental objectives. The data obtained with the NASA P-3 are available at the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), and they are available free of charge to all interested researchers.