Precipitable Water from GPS Zenith Delays Using North American Regional Reanalysis Meteorology

TitlePrecipitable Water from GPS Zenith Delays Using North American Regional Reanalysis Meteorology
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsMeans JD, Cayan D
JournalJournal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology
Date Published2013/03
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number0739-0572
Accession NumberWOS:000316558500006
Keywordsassimilation; atmospheric rivers; impact; ipw; network; noaa; range; system; vapor

Precipitable water or integrated water vapor can be obtained from zenith travel-time delays from global positioning system (GPS) signals if the atmospheric pressure and temperature at the GPS site is known. There have been more than 10 000 GPS receivers deployed as part of geophysics research programs around the world; but, unfortunately, most of these receivers do not have collocated barometers. This paper describes a new technique to use North American Regional Reanalysis pressure, temperature, and geopotential height data to calculate station pressures and surface temperature at the GPS sites. This enables precipitable water to be calculated at those sites using archived zenith delays. The technique has been evaluated by calculating altimeter readings at aviation routine weather report (METAR) sites and comparing them with reported altimeter readings. Additionally, the precipitable water values calculated using this method have been found to agree with SuomiNet GPS precipitable water, with RMS differences of 2 mm or less, and are also generally in agreement with radiosonde measurements of precipitable water. Applications of this technique are shown and are explored for different synoptic situations, including atmospheric-river-type baroclinic storms and the North American monsoon.

Short TitleJ. Atmos. Ocean. Technol.
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