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CALIPSO Lidar Level 2 Vertical Feature Mask data, Validated Stage 1 V3-01

CAL_LID_L2_VFM-ValStage1-V3-01 data are Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation (CALIPSO) Lidar Level 2 Vertical Feature Mask data, Validated Stage 1 Version 3-01. Data collection for this product is complete. The Lidar Level 2 Vertical Feature Mask data product describes the vertical and horizontal distribution of cloud and aerosol layers observed by the CALIPSO lidar. Cloud and aerosol discrimination for detected features is reported as a single value, the Cloud-Aerosol Discrimination (CAD) score (CAD_Score). Version 3.01 of the Lidar Level 2 data products major code and algorithm improvements include:-the elimination of a vicious, vile, and pernicious bug in the cloud clearing code that caused a substantial overestimate of low cloud fraction in earlier data releases (details given in Vaughan et al., 2010); -enhancements to the cloud-aerosol discrimination algorithm that increase the number of diagnostic parameters used to make classification decisions (details given in Liu et al., 2010); -improved daytime calibration procedures, resulting in more accurate estimates of layer spatial and optical properties (details given in Powell et al., 2010); and -an entirely new algorithm for assessing cloud thermodynamic phase (details given in Hu et al., 2009). CALIPSO was launched on April 28, 2006 to study the impact of clouds and aerosols on the Earth's radiation budget and climate. It flies in the international A-Train constellation for coincident Earth observations. The CALIPSO satellite is comprised of three instruments, the Cloud-Aerosol LIdar with Orthogonal Polarization (CALIOP), the Imaging Infrared Radiometer (IIR), and the Wide Field Camera (WFC). CALIPSO is a joint satellite mission between NASA and the French Agency, CNES.

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