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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2019-360
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2019-360
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 07 Nov 2019

Submitted as: research article | 07 Nov 2019

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

Evaluation of OMPS/LP Stratospheric Aerosol Extinction Product Using SAGE III/ISS Observations

Zhong Chen1,2, Pawan K. Bhartia2, Omar Torres2, Glen Jaross2, Robert Loughman3, Matthew DeLand1, Peter Colarco2, Robert Damadeo4, and Ghassan Taha5 Zhong Chen et al.
  • 1Science Systems and Applications, Inc., Lanham, MA, USA
  • 2NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MA, USA
  • 3Department of Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, Hampton University, Hampton, VA, USA
  • 4NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA, USA
  • 5GESTAR, Columbia, Maryland, 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 1.6 km vertical resolution over the entire sunlit globe. The Version 1.5 (V1.5) aerosol extinction retrieval algorithm provides aerosol extinction profiles using observed radiances at 675 nm. The algorithm assumes Mie theory and a gamma function aerosol size distribution for the stratospheric aerosol that is derived from Community Aerosol and Radiation Model for Atmospheres (CARMA) calculated results and observations in April 2012. In this paper, we compare V1.5 LP aerosol profiles with SAGE III/ISS solar occultation observations for the period June 2017 – May 2019, when both measurements were available. Overall, LP extinction profiles agree with SAGE data to within ±25 % for the main aerosol layer between 19 and 27 km, even during periods perturbed by volcanic eruptions or intense forest fires. The slope parameter of linear fitting of LP extinctions with respect to SAGE measurements are close to 1.0, with Pearson's correlation coefficients of r ≥ 0.95, indicating that the LP aerosol data are reliable in that altitude range. Comparisons of extinction time series show a high degree of correlation between LP and SAGE, indicating that the LP retrieved extinction variability in time is robust. On the other hand, we find that LP retrieved extinction is systematically higher than SAGE observations at altitudes above 28 km and systematically lower below 19 km in the tropics. This is likely due in part to the fact that the actual aerosol size distribution is altitude dependent, while the assumed size distribution in the V1.5 retrieval is assumed to be altitude independent and so it may be less accurate for altitudes above 28 km and below 19 km where the size distribution is more variable. There are other reasons related to cloud contamination, wavelength limitations and the accuracy of both instruments at low aerosol loading.

Zhong Chen et al.
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