Determination of Wind From Nimbus 6 Satellite Sounding Data.
TEXAS A AND M UNIV COLLEGE STATION DEPT OF METEOROLOGY
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Objective methods of computing upper-level and surface wind fields from Nimbus-6 satellite sounding data are developed. These methods are evaluated by comparing satellite-derived and rawinsonde wind fields on gridded constant-pressure charts in four geographical regions. Satellite-derived and hourly observed surface wind fields are compared. Results indicate that the best satellite-derived wind on constant-pressure charts is a geostrophic wind derived from highly smoothed fields of geopotential height. Satellite-derived winds computed in this manner and rawinsonde winds show similar circulation patterns except in areas of small height gradients. Magnitudes of the standard deviation of the differences between satellite-derived and rawinsonde wind speeds range from approximately 3 to 12 ms on constant-pressure charts and peak at the jet-stream level. Fields of satellite-derived surface wind computed with the logarithmic wind law agree well with fields of observed surface wind in most regions. Magnitudes of the standard deviation of the difference in surface wind speed range from approximately 2 to 4 ms, and satellite-derived surface winds are able to depict flow across a cold front and around a low-pressure center.