A physics-based correction model for homogenizing sub-daily temperature series

Auchmann, Renate; Brönnimann, Stefan (2012). A physics-based correction model for homogenizing sub-daily temperature series. Journal of geophysical research, 117(D17), n/a-n/a. Washington, D.C.: American Geophysical Union 10.1029/2012JD018067

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A new physics-based technique for correcting inhomogeneities present in sub-daily temperature records is proposed. The approach accounts for changes in the sensor-shield characteristics that affect the energy balance dependent on ambient weather conditions (radiation, wind). An empirical model is formulated that reflects the main atmospheric processes and can be used in the correction step of a homogenization procedure. The model accounts for short- and long-wave radiation fluxes (including a snow cover component for albedo calculation) of a measurement system, such as a radiation shield. One part of the flux is further modulated by ventilation. The model requires only cloud cover and wind speed for each day, but detailed site-specific information is necessary. The final model has three free parameters, one of which is a constant offset. The three parameters can be determined, e.g., using the mean offsets for three observation times. The model is developed using the example of the change from the Wild screen to the Stevenson screen in the temperature record of Basel, Switzerland, in 1966. It is evaluated based on parallel measurements of both systems during a sub-period at this location, which were discovered during the writing of this paper. The model can be used in the correction step of homogenization to distribute a known mean step-size to every single measurement, thus providing a reasonable alternative correction procedure for high-resolution historical climate series. It also constitutes an error model, which may be applied, e.g., in data assimilation approaches.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography > Physical Geography > Unit Climatology
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography

UniBE Contributor:

Auchmann, Renate and Brönnimann, Stefan




American Geophysical Union




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:42

Last Modified:

08 Jun 2016 10:35

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Web of Science ID:





https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/17360 (FactScience: 225122)

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