Volume 87A (2009) Pages 1-30
This paper describes the basic structure and flow of the rain profiling algorithm for the TRMM Precipitation Radar, and discusses the major assumptions and sources of error in the algorithm. In particular, it describes how the uncertainties in individual parameters affect the attenuation correction and rain estimates. Major parameters involved are the drop size distribution, the phase state of precipitating particles, their density and shape, inhomogeneity of precipitation distribution within the footprint, attenuation due to cloud liquid water and water vapor, freezing height, uncertainty of the surface scattering cross section, and fluctuation of the radar echo signal. Among these parameters that affect the rain estimates, the effect of inhomogeneity of rain distribution is summarized in detail. The paper also describes how these parameters are taken into account in different versions of the standard algorithm 2A25.