Vertical dimensions of seasonal trends in the diurnal temperature range across the central United States

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Abstract

Many investigators have used near-surface air temperature measurements to document a downward global trend in the diurnal temperature range (DTR). In this paper, we use radiosonde-based tropospheric measurements to examine vertical dimensions in trends in the DTR over the central United States. We find declining trends in DTR only at 85 kPa and the surface in the high-sun season, with the absolute trend at 85 kPa being greater than the trend at the surface suggesting that the trend in DTR is far more than an urban artifact in the data. There are no significant trends in DTR from 70 kPa to 25 kPa in any season. These results suggest that DTR trends in the low troposphere are likely influenced by near-surface processes such as variations in cloudiness, vegetation, or precipitation but not dominated by urban effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume30
Issue number17
StatePublished - Sep 1 2003

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trends
temperature
radiosondes
trend
radiosonde
vegetation
troposphere
cloud cover
temperature measurement
artifact
artifacts
sun
surface temperature
air temperature
air

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)

Cite this

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title = "Vertical dimensions of seasonal trends in the diurnal temperature range across the central United States",
abstract = "Many investigators have used near-surface air temperature measurements to document a downward global trend in the diurnal temperature range (DTR). In this paper, we use radiosonde-based tropospheric measurements to examine vertical dimensions in trends in the DTR over the central United States. We find declining trends in DTR only at 85 kPa and the surface in the high-sun season, with the absolute trend at 85 kPa being greater than the trend at the surface suggesting that the trend in DTR is far more than an urban artifact in the data. There are no significant trends in DTR from 70 kPa to 25 kPa in any season. These results suggest that DTR trends in the low troposphere are likely influenced by near-surface processes such as variations in cloudiness, vegetation, or precipitation but not dominated by urban effects.",
author = "Robert Balling and Randall Cerveny",
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N2 - Many investigators have used near-surface air temperature measurements to document a downward global trend in the diurnal temperature range (DTR). In this paper, we use radiosonde-based tropospheric measurements to examine vertical dimensions in trends in the DTR over the central United States. We find declining trends in DTR only at 85 kPa and the surface in the high-sun season, with the absolute trend at 85 kPa being greater than the trend at the surface suggesting that the trend in DTR is far more than an urban artifact in the data. There are no significant trends in DTR from 70 kPa to 25 kPa in any season. These results suggest that DTR trends in the low troposphere are likely influenced by near-surface processes such as variations in cloudiness, vegetation, or precipitation but not dominated by urban effects.

AB - Many investigators have used near-surface air temperature measurements to document a downward global trend in the diurnal temperature range (DTR). In this paper, we use radiosonde-based tropospheric measurements to examine vertical dimensions in trends in the DTR over the central United States. We find declining trends in DTR only at 85 kPa and the surface in the high-sun season, with the absolute trend at 85 kPa being greater than the trend at the surface suggesting that the trend in DTR is far more than an urban artifact in the data. There are no significant trends in DTR from 70 kPa to 25 kPa in any season. These results suggest that DTR trends in the low troposphere are likely influenced by near-surface processes such as variations in cloudiness, vegetation, or precipitation but not dominated by urban effects.

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