Biological and Environmental Research - Earth and Environmental System Sciences
Earth and Environmental System Modeling
28 February 2019

Surface and Top-of-Atmosphere Radiative Feedback Kernels for CESM-CAM5


Radiative kernels are a tool used to decompose changes in radiative fluxes into components associated with temperature, water vapor, and surface albedo. They can also be used indirectly to diagnose the contribution of changes in clouds to radiative fluxes. Previous sets of kernels for the TOA exist, but few surface kernel datasets do, and no model-based kernels had been validated prior to this study. Furthermore, a complete technical description of how to generate and use kernels had never before been published. This set of radiative kernels was generated using offline radiative transfer calculations with CAM5-PORT and the CESM Large Ensemble base state. The kernels, radiative forcing, and demo data were released on NCAR’s ESG, and software to implement the kernels are provided on Github. The data and also software to implement them are available for the community. 


Angeline Pendergrass
National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR)
Pendergrass, AG, A Conley, and FM Vitt.  2018.  "Surface and Top-of-Atmosphere Radiative Feedback Kernels for CESM-CAM5."  Earth System Science Data 10(1): 317-324.