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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2020-109
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2020-109
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 24 Apr 2020

Submitted as: research article | 24 Apr 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal AMT.

An improved TROPOMI tropospheric HCHO retrieval over China

Wenjing Su1,, Cheng Liu2,3,4,5,6,, Ka Lok Chan7, Qihou Hu2, Haoran Liu4, Xiangguang Ji2,8, Yizhi Zhu2, Ting Liu1, Chengxin Zhang1, Yujia Chen2, and Jianguo Liu2 Wenjing Su et al.
  • 1School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
  • 2Key Lab of Environmental Optics and Technology, Anhui Institute of Optics and Fine Mechanics, Hefei Institutes of Physical Science,Chinese Academy of Sciences, Hefei 230031, China
  • 3Center for Excellence in Regional Atmospheric Environment, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiamen 361021, China
  • 4Department of Precision Machinery and Precision Instrumentation, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230027, China
  • 5Key Laboratory of Precision Scientific Instrumentation of Anhui Higher Education Institutes, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230027, China
  • 6Anhui Province Key Laboratory of Polar Environment and Global Change, USTC, Hefei 230026, China
  • 7Remote Sensing Technology Institute (IMF), German Aerospace Center (DLR), Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany
  • 8School of Environmental Science and Optoelectronic Technology, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
  • These authors contributed equally to this work.

Abstract. We present the improved retrieval of TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI) tropospheric formaldehyde (HCHO) over China. The new retrieval optimizes the slant column density (SCD) retrieval and air mass factor (AMF) calculation for TROPOMI observations of HCHO over China. HCHO SCDs are retrieved using the basic optical differential spectroscopy (BOAS) technique, while AMFs are calculated with a priori HCHO profile from a higher resolution regional chemistry transport model. Compared to the operational product, the new TROPOMI HCHO retrieval shows better agreement with the ground based Multi-AXis Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (MAX-DOAS) measurements in China. The operational product in general overestimates HCHO VCDs by 14.01 %, while the improved HCHO only shows an underestimation of 3.67 %. The improvements are mainly related to the AMF calculation with higher resolution a priori profile (61.11 %), while the SCD retrieval only shows a minor effect of 0.15 %. The improved HCHO is also used to investigate the spatial-temporal characteristic of HCHO over China. The result shows that HCHO VCDs reach maximum in summer and minimum in winter. High HCHO VCDs mainly located over populated areas, i.e., Sichuan Basin, Central and Eastern China, indicating a significant contribution of anthropogenic emissions. The result indicates the improved TROPOMI HCHO is more suitable for the analysis of regional and city scale pollution in China.

Wenjing Su et al.

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Short summary
The manuscript presents an improved retrieval of TROPOMI tropospheric HCHO column over China. The new retrieval optimized both slant column retrieval and air mass factor calculation for TROPOMI observations of HCHO over China. The improved TROPOMI HCHO is subsequently validated by MAX-DOAS observations. Compared to the operational product, the improved HCHO agrees better to the MAX-DOAS data and thus better suit for the analysis of regional and city scale pollution in China.
The manuscript presents an improved retrieval of TROPOMI tropospheric HCHO column over China....
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