Engstrom, A, Ekman, AML (2010). Impact of meteorological factors on the correlation between aerosol optical depth and cloud fraction. GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS, 37, L18814.
The aerosol optical depth has in several recent studies been found to correlate with cloud fraction. This study examines the global distribution of the total correlation between aerosol optical depth, cloud fraction and meteorological conditions using satellite observations together with atmospheric re-analysis data from the ECMWF. The results show large regional differences in the correlation between aerosol optical depth and cloud fraction, where a higher correlation is found over remote ocean. The one meteorological variable that correlates significantly with both aerosol optical depth and cloud fraction is the 10-meter wind speed. Constructing the partial correlation between aerosol optical depth and cloud fraction, with the impact from 10-meter wind speed removed, yields a significant difference compared to the total correlation. In several regions the remaining partial correlation is reduced from 0.4 to below 0.1. The results highlight the need to investigate all possible correlations between meteorological variables, cloud properties and aerosols. Citation: Engstrom, A., and A. M. L. Ekman (2010), Impact of meteorological factors on the correlation between aerosol optical depth and cloud fraction, Geophys. Res. Lett., 37, L18814, doi:10.1029/2010GL044361.