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 Aerosol and Cloud Science
Cloud spirals and outflow in tropical storm Katrina

The Aerosol and Cloud Science Group's primary research interests are in understanding the impacts of clouds and aerosols on Earth's climate and environment, and improving our knowledge of radiative processes and feedbacks. The Group has a strong background in atmospheric optics, 1-D and 3-D atmospheric radiative transfer, remote sensing science, algorithm development, data analysis, scientific programming, data visualization, and software development. Research is focused on data acquired by JPL's Multiangle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) flight instrument on the EOS Terra spacecraft, which began global data collection in early 2000, and for its airborne counterpart, AirMISR.

The MISR instrument concept, and many algorithms used in conjunction with it are innovations invented by members of this Group. Although many of the concepts have had little or no heritage, flight data analyses and algorithm research have successfully pioneered several revolutionary remote sensing capabilities pertaining to multiangle retrievals of tropospheric aerosol distributions and microphysical properties over ocean and land, water cloud and aerosol plume heights, 3-D radiative transfer impacts on cloud-climate and hydrological cycle interactions, and cloud motion winds.

Ongoing efforts within the Group include continued algorithm and validation efforts in support of MISR, scientific application of MISR data , and initiation of new instruments and missions that capitalize on the knowledge and experience gained from MISR and other Earth remote sensing instruments.

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