P. Keckhut, Y. Courcoux, J. Baray
Journal of Applied Remote Sensing
Abstract. The first operations at the new High-altitude Maïdo Observatory at La Réunion began in 2013. The Maïdo Lidar Calibration Campaign (MALICCA) was organized there in April 2013 and has focused on the validation of the thermodynamic parameters (temperature, water vapor, and wind) measured with many instruments including the new very large lidar for water vapor and temperature profiles. The aim of this publication consists of providing an overview of the different instruments deployed during this campaign and their status, some of the targeted scientific questions and associated instrumental issues. Some specific detailed studies for some individual techniques were addressed elsewhere. This study shows that temperature profiles were obtained from the ground to the mesopause (80 km) thanks to the lidar and regular meteorological balloon-borne sondes with an overlap range showing good agreement. Water vapor is also monitored from the ground to the mesopause by using the Raman lidar and microwave techniques. Both techniques need to be pushed to their limit to reduce the missing range in the lower stratosphere. Total columns obtained from global positioning system or spectrometers are valuable for checking the calibration and ensuring vertical continuity. The lidar can also provide the vertical cloud structure that is a valuable complementary piece of information when investigating the water vapor cycle. Finally, wind vertical profiles, which were obtained from sondes, are now also retrieved at Maïdo from the newly implemented microwave technique and the lidar. Stable calibrations as well as a small-scale dynamical structure are required to monitor the thermodynamic state of the middle atmosphere, ensure validation of satellite sensors, study the transport of water vapor in the vicinity of the tropical tropopause and study their link with cirrus clouds and cyclones and the impact of small-scale dynamics (gravity waves) and their link with the mean state of the mesosphere.