Aerosol and Cloud, Convection and Precipitation (ACCP)


The goal is to define science objectives for the Aerosol and Cloud, Convection and Precipitation (ACCP) Designated Observable (DO) observing systems and observing system approaches and architectures that could achieve the science objectives. This study leverages results from historical studies and investments such as the Aerosol-Cloud-ocean Ecosystems (ACE) study, those from existing and proposed Earth Venture concepts, analyses already conducted on data from past field experiments, and recent advances of modeling systems and Observing System Simulation Experiments (OSSEs).

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM) 2017 Decadal Survey, “Thriving on Our Changing Planet: A Decadal Strategy for Earth Observations from Space,” highlighted Earth System Science themes, science and application questions, and several high priority objectives that have led to the inclusion of ACCP as DOs.

The aerosol-related science questions outlined by the DS focus on two major themes:

  1. Climate variability and change
  2. Weather and air quality

The aerosol mission observables targeted to address these major objectives may potentially contribute to three additional themes:

  1. Marine and terrestrial ecosystems
  2. Global hydrological cycle
  3. Earth surface and interior

This study will examine these linkages.

The Decadal Survey (DS) identified CCP as a DO focused on coupled cloud-precipitation states and dynamics for addressing cloud and precipitation processes relevant to a wide sector of the science objectives called out in the disciplinary panels, as well as gaps in the precipitation Program of Record (POR). CCP was deemed critical for assessing low and high cloud feedbacks, advancing seasonal and interannual climate variability and prediction, and characterizing convective processes that are at the core of severe and extreme weather. CCP was deemed relevant to a large cross section of the panel’s most important objectives.

The DS recognized the science merit in potentially combining the implementation Aerosol and Cloud, Convection and Precipitation DOs for both enhancing the ability to address a number of most important (MI) objectives defined by the disciplinary panels and also to provide an expanded capability to address additional objectives beyond those addressed by individual DOs.

The DS also identified Integrating Themes that can be addressed through combinations of observables including potential combinations of DOs and the POR.

The combined Aerosol-CCP portion of this study will demonstrate how the combination of these observables will enhance the objectives of each individually, while providing the ability to expand the DS objectives addressed, and will closely connect to studies being performed in parallel.

Current Science and Applications Traceability Matrix (SATM)

Related events

  • Weather & Air Quality Forecasting Applications Workshop July 22-24, 2019, ESSIC, University of Maryland
  • SATM Release E Aug. 14, 2019
  • First ACCP Quarterly Forum, Sept. 10, 2019
  • SATM Release F Sept. 11, 2019
  • Second ACCP Quarterly Forum, mid-December 2019-mid-January 2020
  • Sub-Orbital Workshop One, March 2020

Advertised opportunities (RFIs)

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Schedule for architecture studies underway

  • Architecture Construction Workshop (ACW) #4 Sept. 16, 2019
  • Qualitative Ranking of Science Value & Programmatic Factors from Viable Architectures that emerged from ACW #4 Oct. 2, 2019
  • Concurrent Design Center (CDC) #1 to provide a more detailed evaluation of a Promising Observing System Sept. 30 – Oct. 7-11, 2019
  • Selection of the next five promising Observing Systems for CDC runs in 2020, late November 2019
  • CDC #2 January 2020


For more information

Please join us for our 1st Quarterly Forum on Tuesday, Sept. 10 at 1 p.m. EST.
Check back for details.