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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers | Copyright
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 31 Jul 2018

Research article | 31 Jul 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of the manuscript is under review for the journal Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT).

Improvement of stratospheric aerosol extinction retrieval from OMPS/LP using a new aerosol model

Zhong Chen1, Pawan K. Bhartia2, Robert Loughman3, Peter Colarco2, and Matthew DeLand1 Zhong Chen et al.
  • 1Science Systems and Applications, Inc., Lanham, Maryland, 20706, USA
  • 2NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland , 20771, USA
  • 3Department of Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, Hampton University, Hampton, Virginia, 23668, USA

Abstract. The Ozone Mapping and Profiler Suite Limb Profiler (OMPS/LP) has been flying on the Suomi NPP satellite since October 2011. It is designed to produce ozone and aerosol vertical profiles at ~2km vertical resolution over the entire sunlit globe. Aerosol extinction profiles are computed with Mie theory using radiances measured at 675nm. The operational Version 1.0 (V1.0) aerosol extinction retrieval algorithm assumes a bimodal lognormal aerosol size distribution (ASD) whose parameters were derived by combining an in situ measurement of aerosol microphysics with the SAGE II aerosol extinction climatology. Internal analysis indicates that this bimodal lognormal ASD does not sufficiently explain the spectral dependence of LP measured radiances. In this paper we describe the derivation of an improved aerosol size distribution, designated Version 1.5 (V1.5), for the LP retrieval algorithm. The new ASD uses a gamma function distribution that is derived from Community Aerosol and Radiation Model for Atmospheres (CARMA) calculated results. A cumulative distribution fit derived from the gamma function ASD gives better agreement with CARMA results at small particle radii than bimodal or unimodal functions. The new ASD also explains the spectral dependence of LP measured radiances better than the V1.0 ASD. We find that the impact of our choice of ASD on the retrieved extinctions varies strongly with the underlying reflectivity of the scene. Initial comparisons with co-located extinction profiles retrieved at 676nm from the SAGE III/ISS instrument show a significant improvement in agreement for the LP V1.5 retrievals. Zonal mean extinction profiles agree to within 10% between 19–29km, and regression fits of collocated samples show improved correlation and reduced scatter compared to the V1.0 product. This improved agreement will motivate development of more sophisticated ASDs from CARMA results that incorporate latitude, altitude, and seasonal variations in aerosol properties.

Zhong Chen et al.
Interactive discussion
Status: final response (author comments only)
Status: final response (author comments only)
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Zhong Chen et al.
Zhong Chen et al.
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