Terms of Reference

The Committee on Atmospheric Radiation is concerned with all aspects of the earth-atmosphere system in which radiative processes play a role. These processes encompass a wide range of phenomena, including the absorption, emission and scattering of light by molecules, aerosols, cloud particles and terrestrial surfaces; measurement of the radiative properties of earth-atmosphere system constituents; the role of radiation in weather and climate and the models that predict them; and the use of radiometric measurements and principles for remote sensing. Of specific concern to this committee are processes in which atmospheric radiation plays a key role, such as the greenhouse effect, the radiative impacts of natural and anthropogenic aerosols, cloud-climate interactions, sea surface temperature anomalies and associated effects on the earth's radiation budget, changes in surface albedo and emissivity, and ozone depletion.