Yang Hong


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Cross-Examination of Similarity, Difference and Deficiency of Gauge, Radar and Satellite Precipitation Measuring Uncertainties for Extreme Events Using Conventional Metrics and Multiplicative Triple Collocation
Zhi Li, Mengye Chen, Shang Gao, Hong Zhou, Guoqiang Tang, Yixin Wen, Jonathan J. Gourley, Yang Hong
Remote Sensing, Volume 12, Issue 8

Quantifying uncertainties of precipitation estimation, especially in extreme events, could benefit early warning of water-related hazards like flash floods and landslides. Rain gauges, weather radars, and satellites are three mainstream data sources used in measuring precipitation but have their own inherent advantages and deficiencies. With a focus on extremes, the overarching goal of this study is to cross-examine the similarities and differences of three state-of-the-art independent products (Muti-Radar Muti-Sensor Quantitative Precipitation Estimates, MRMS; National Center for Environmental Prediction gridded gauge-only hourly precipitation product, NCEP; Integrated Multi-satellitE Retrievals for GPM, IMERG), with both traditional metrics and the Multiplicative Triple Collection (MTC) method during Hurricane Harvey and multiple Tropical Cyclones. The results reveal that: (a) the consistency of cross-examination results against traditional metrics approves the applicability of MTC in extreme events; (b) the consistency of cross-events of MTC evaluation results also suggests its robustness across individual storms; (c) all products demonstrate their capacity of capturing the spatial and temporal variability of the storm structures while also magnifying respective inherent deficiencies; (d) NCEP and IMERG likely underestimate while MRMS overestimates the storm total accumulation, especially for the 500-year return Hurricane Harvey; (e) both NCEP and IMERG underestimate extreme rainrates (>= 90 mm/h) likely due to device insensitivity or saturation while MRMS maintains robust across the rainrate range; (g) all three show inherent deficiencies in capturing the storm core of Harvey possibly due to device malfunctions with the NCEP gauges, relative low spatiotemporal resolution of IMERG, and the unusual “hot” MRMS radar signals. Given the unknown ground reference assumption of MTC, this study suggests that MRMS has the best overall performance. The similarities, differences, advantages, and deficiencies revealed in this study could guide the users for emergency response and motivate the community not only to improve the respective sensor/algorithm but also innovate multidata merging methods for one best possible product, specifically suitable for extreme storm events.

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Have satellite precipitation products improved over last two decades? A comprehensive comparison of GPM IMERG with nine satellite and reanalysis datasets
Guoqiang Tang, Martyn P. Clark, Simon Michael Papalexiou, Zhanshan Ma, Yang Hong
Remote Sensing of Environment, Volume 240

Abstract The Integrated Multi-satellitE Retrievals for Global Precipitation Measurement (IMERG) produces the latest generation of satellite precipitation estimates and has been widely used since its release in 2014. IMERG V06 provides global rainfall and snowfall data beginning from 2000. This study comprehensively analyzes the quality of the IMERG product at daily and hourly scales in China from 2000 to 2018 with special attention paid to snowfall estimates. The performance of IMERG is compared with nine satellite and reanalysis products (TRMM 3B42, CMORPH, PERSIANN-CDR, GSMaP, CHIRPS, SM2RAIN, ERA5, ERA-Interim, and MERRA2). Results show that the IMERG product outperforms other datasets, except the Global Satellite Mapping of Precipitation (GSMaP), which uses daily-scale station data to adjust satellite precipitation estimates. The monthly-scale station data adjustment used by IMERG naturally has a limited impact on estimates of precipitation occurrence and intensity at the daily and hourly time scales. The quality of IMERG has improved over time, attributed to the increasing number of passive microwave samples. SM2RAIN, ERA5, and MERRA2 also exhibit increasing accuracy with time that may cause variable performance in climatological studies. Even relying on monthly station data adjustments, IMERG shows good performance in both accuracy metrics at hourly time scales and the representation of diurnal cycles. In contrast, although ERA5 is acceptable at the daily scale, it degrades at the hourly scale due to the limitation in reproducing the peak time, magnitude and variation of diurnal cycles. IMERG underestimates snowfall compared with gauge and reanalysis data. The triple collocation analysis suggests that IMERG snowfall is worse than reanalysis and gauge data, which partly results in the degraded quality of IMERG in cold climates. This study demonstrates new findings on the uncertainties of various precipitation products and identifies potential directions for algorithm improvement. The results of this study will be useful for both developers and users of satellite rainfall products.