GCOS Reference Upper-Air Network


Laboratory characterisation and intercomparison sounding test of dual thermistor radiosondes for radiation correction



Lee, S.-W., Kim, S., Lee, Y.-S., Yoo, J.-K., Lee, S., Kwon, S., Choi, B. I., So, J., and Kim, Y.-G.



by Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT) at 2022-04-26



A dual thermistor radiosonde (DTR) comprising two (aluminium-coated and black) sensors with different emissivities was developed to correct the effects of solar radiation on temperature probes based on in situ radiation measurements. Herein, the DTR performance is characterised in terms of the uncertainty via a series of ground-based facilities and an intercomparison radiosounding test. The DTR characterisation procedure using laboratory facilities is as follows: individually calibrate the temperature of the thermistors in a climate chamber from −70 to 30 ∘C to evaluate the uncertainty of raw temperature measurement before radiation correction; test the effect of temperature on the resistance reading using radiosonde boards in the climate chamber from −70 to 20 ∘C to identify a potential source of errors owing to the boards, especially at cold temperatures; individually perform radiation tests on thermistors at room temperature to investigate the degree of heating of aluminium-coated and black sensors (the average ratio = 1 : 2.4) and use the result for obtaining unit-specific radiation correction formulas; and perform parameterisation of the radiation measurement and correction formulas with five representative pairs of sensors in terms of temperature, pressure, ventilation speed, and irradiance using an upper air simulator. These results are combined and applied to the DTR sounding test conducted in July 2021. Thereafter, the effective irradiance is measured using the temperature difference between the aluminium-coated and black sensors of the DTR. The measured irradiance is then used for the radiation correction of the DTR aluminium-coated sensor. The radiation-corrected temperature of the DTR is mostly consistent with that of a commercial radiosonde (Vaisala, RS41) within the expanded uncertainty (∼ 0.35 ∘C) of the DTR at the coverage factor k = 2. Furthermore, the components contributing to the uncertainty of the radiation measurement and correction are analysed. The DTR methodology can improve the accuracy of temperature measurement in the upper air within the framework of the traceability to the International System of Units.




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