The Mass of the Atmosphere: A Constraint on Global Analyses

  title={The Mass of the Atmosphere: A Constraint on Global Analyses},
  author={Kevin E. Trenberth and Lesley Smith},
  journal={Journal of Climate},
Abstract The total mass of the atmosphere varies mainly from changes in water vapor loading; the former is proportional to global mean surface pressure and the water vapor component is computed directly from specific humidity and precipitable water using the 40-yr European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) Re-Analyses (ERA-40). Their difference, the mass of the dry atmosphere, is estimated to be constant for the equivalent surface pressure to within 0.01 hPa based on changes in… 

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