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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union

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© Author(s) 2012. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
21 Aug 2012
Review status
This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT). The revised manuscript was not accepted.
Global stratospheric aerosol extinction profile retrievals from SCIAMACHY limb-scatter observations
F. Ernst1, C. von Savigny1,*, A. Rozanov1, V. Rozanov1, K.-U. Eichmann1, L. A. Brinkhoff1, H. Bovensmann1, and J. P. Burrows1 1Institute of Environmental Physics/Remote Sensing, University of Bremen, Bremen, Germany
*now at: Institute of Physics, Ernst-Moritz-Arndt-University of Greifswald, Greifswald, Germany
Abstract. Stratospheric aerosol extinction profiles are retrieved from SCIAMACHY/Envisat limb-scatter observations in the visible spectral range. The retrieval algorithm is based on a colour-index approach using the normalized limb-radiance profiles at 470 nm and 750 nm wavelength. The optimal estimation approach in combination with the radiative transfer model SCIATRAN is employed for the retrievals. This study presents a detailed description of the retrieval algorithm, and a sensitivity analysis investigating the impact of the most important parameters that affect the aerosol extinction profile retrieval accuracy. It is found that the parameter with the largest impact is surface albedo, particularly for SCIAMACHY observations in the Southern Hemisphere where the error in stratospheric aerosol extinction can be up to 50% if the surface albedo is not well known. The effect of errors in the assumed ozone and neutral density profiles on the aerosol profile retrievals is with generally less than 6% relatively small. The aerosol extinction profiles retrieved from SCIAMACHY are compared with co-located SAGE II solar occultation measurements of stratospheric aerosol extinction during the period 2003–2005. The mean aerosol extinction profiles averaged over all co-locations agree to within 20% between 15 and 35 km altitude. However, larger differences are observed at specific latitudes.

Citation: Ernst, F., von Savigny, C., Rozanov, A., Rozanov, V., Eichmann, K.-U., Brinkhoff, L. A., Bovensmann, H., and Burrows, J. P.: Global stratospheric aerosol extinction profile retrievals from SCIAMACHY limb-scatter observations, Atmos. Meas. Tech. Discuss., 5, 5993-6035, doi:10.5194/amtd-5-5993-2012, 2012.
F. Ernst et al.
F. Ernst et al.


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