Water vapour; radiosonde; satellite measurements.
The present study deals with using long-term database for upper tropospheric water vapour (UTWV) variability studies over three tropical stations (Gadanki, Singapore and Truk), where different climatic conditions prevail. Over Gadanki (13.5°N, 79.2°E) strong seasonal variation in UTWV is revealed but not over Singapore (1.37°N, 103.98°E) and Truk (7.46°N, 151.85°E) except at 100 hPa. It is examined whether high resolution radiosonde measurements represent well the UTWV by comparing with different satellite based (Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS), Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit-B (AMSUB) and Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS)) water vapour measurements. Very good comparison in the nature of variations of UTWV is observed between radiosonde data and satellite data, except over Singapore particularly with AIRS and MLS data, on long-term basis. An attempt is also made to examine the source for UTWV. A close relationship is found between UTWV and deep convection over Gadanki indicating that the source for UTWV is convection particularly during the summer monsoon season.