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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 16 Oct 2018

Research article | 16 Oct 2018

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

A bulk-mass-modeling-based method for retrieving Particulate Matter Pollution using CALIOP observations

Travis D. Toth1, Jianglong Zhang2, Jeffrey S. Reid3, and Mark A. Vaughan1 Travis D. Toth et al.
  • 1NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA
  • 2Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND
  • 3Marine Meteorology Division, Naval Research Laboratory, Monterey, CA

Abstract. In this proof-of-concept paper, we apply a bulk-mass-modeling method using observations from the NASA Cloud-Aerosol Lidar with Orthogonal Polarization (CALIOP) instrument for retrieving particulate matter (PM) concentration over the contiguous United States (CONUS) over a 2-year period (2008–2009). Different from previous approaches that rely on empirical relationships between aerosol optical depth (AOD) and PM2.5 (PM with particle sizes less than 2.5µm), for the first time, we derive PM2.5 concentrations, both at daytime and nighttime, from near surface CALIOP aerosol extinction retrievals using bulk mass extinction coefficients and model-based hygroscopicity. Preliminary results from this 2-year study conducted over the CONUS show a good agreement (r2~0.48; mean bias of −3.3µgm−3) between the averaged nighttime CALIOP-derived PM2.5 and ground-based PM2.5 (with a lower r2 of ~0.21 for daytime; mean bias of −0.4µgm−3), suggesting that PM concentrations can be obtained from active-based spaceborne observations with reasonable accuracy. Results from sensitivity studies suggest that accurate aerosol typing is needed for applying CALIOP measurements for PM2.5 studies. Lastly, the e-folding correlation length for surface PM2.5 is found to be around 600km for the entire CONUS (~300km for Western CONUS and ~700km for Eastern CONUS), indicating that CALIOP observations, although sparse in spatial coverage, may still be applicable for PM2.5 studies.

Travis D. Toth et al.
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Travis D. Toth et al.
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Publications Copernicus
Short summary
An innovative method is presented for deriving particulate matter (PM) concentrations using CALIOP measurements. Deviating from conventional approaches of relying on passive satellite column-integrated aerosol measurements, PM concentrations are derived from near surface CALIOP measurements through a bulk-mass-modeling method. This proof-of-concept study shows that, while limited in spatial and temporal coverage, CALIOP exhibits reasonable skill for PM applications.
An innovative method is presented for deriving particulate matter (PM) concentrations using...