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

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© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
10 Apr 2018
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT).
Intercomparison of four airborne imaging DOAS systems for tropospheric NO2 mapping – The AROMAPEX campaign
Frederik Tack1, Alexis Merlaud1, Andreas C. Meier2, Tim Vlemmix3,a, Thomas Ruhtz4, Marian-Daniel Iordache5, Xinrui Ge3,b, Len van der Wal6, Dirk Schuettemeyer7, Magdalena Ardelean8, Andreea Calcan8, Anja Schönhardt2, Koen Meuleman5, Andreas Richter2, and Michel Van Roozendael1 1BIRA-IASB, Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy, Brussels, Belgium
2IUP-Bremen, Institute of Environmental Physics, University of Bremen, Germany
3TU Delft, Delft University of Technology, Delft, the Netherlands
4FUB, Institute for Space Sciences, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
5VITO-TAP, Flemish Institute for Technological Research, Mol, Belgium
6TNO, Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research, the Netherlands
7ESA-ESTEC, European Space Agency, Noordwijk, the Netherlands
8INCAS, National Institute for Aerospace Research "Elie Carafoli", Bucharest, Romania
anow at: KNMI, Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute, De Bilt, the Netherlands
bnow at: WUR, Wageningen University and Research, the Netherlands
Abstract. We present an intercomparison study of four airborne imaging DOAS instruments, dedicated to the retrieval and high resolution mapping of tropospheric nitrogen dioxide (NO2) vertical column densities (VCDs). The AROMAPEX campaign took place in Berlin, Germany in April, 2016 with the primary objective to test and intercompare the performance of experimental airborne imagers. The imaging DOAS instruments were operated simultaneously from two manned aircraft, performing synchronised flights: APEX (VITO/BIRA-IASB) was operated from DLR's DO-228 D-CFFU aircraft at 6.2 km altitude, while AirMAP (IUP-Bremen), SWING (BIRA-IASB) and SBI (TNO/TU Delft/KNMI) were operated from the FUB Cessna 207T D-EAFU at 3.1 km. Two synchronised flights took place on 21 April 2016. NO2 slant columns were retrieved by applying differential optical absorption spectroscopy (DOAS) in the visible wavelength region and converted to VCDs by the computation of appropriate air mass factors (AMFs). Finally, the NO2 VCDs were georeferenced and mapped at high spatial resolution. For the sake of harmonising the different data sets, efforts were made to agree on a common set of parameter settings, AMF LUT and gridding algorithm. The NO2 horizontal distribution, observed by the different DOAS imagers, shows very similar spatial patterns. The NO2 field is dominated by two large plumes related to industrial compounds, crossing the city from west to east. The major highways A100 and A113 are also identified as line sources of NO2. Retrieved NO2 VCDs range between 1 × 1015 molec cm−2 upwind of the city and 20 × 1015 molec cm−2 in the dominant plume, with a mean of 7.3 ± 1.8 × 1015 molec cm−2 for the morning flight and between 1 and 23 × 1015 molec cm−2 with a mean of 6.0 ± 1.4 × 1015 molec cm−2 for the afternoon flight. The mean NO2 VCD retrieval errors are in the range of 22 to 36 % for all sensors. The four data sets are in good agreement with Pearson correlation coefficients better than 0.9, while the linear regression analyses show slopes close to unity and generally small intercepts.
Citation: Tack, F., Merlaud, A., Meier, A. C., Vlemmix, T., Ruhtz, T., Iordache, M.-D., Ge, X., van der Wal, L., Schuettemeyer, D., Ardelean, M., Calcan, A., Schönhardt, A., Meuleman, K., Richter, A., and Van Roozendael, M.: Intercomparison of four airborne imaging DOAS systems for tropospheric NO2 mapping – The AROMAPEX campaign, Atmos. Meas. Tech. Discuss.,, in review, 2018.
Frederik Tack et al.
Frederik Tack et al.
Frederik Tack et al.


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