Sensitivity of formaldehyde (HCHO) column measurements from a geostationary satellite to aerosol temporal variation in East Asia

Other literature type English OPEN
Kwon, Hyeong-Ahn ; Park, Rokjin J. ; Jeong, Jaein I. ; Lee, Seungun ; González Abad, Gonzalo ; Kurosu, Thomas P. ; Palmer, Paul I. ; Chance, Kelly (2016)

We examine upcoming geostationary satellite observations of formaldehyde (HCHO) columns in East Asia and the retrieval sensitivity to the temporal variation of air mass factor (AMF) considering the presence of aerosols. Observation system simulation experiments (OSSE) were conducted using a combination of a global 3-D chemical transport model (GEOS-Chem), a radiative transfer model (VLIDORT), and a HCHO retrieval algorithm developed for Geostationary Environment Monitoring Spectrometer (GEMS), which will be launched in 2019. Application of the retrieval algorithm to simulated hourly radiances yields the retrieved HCHO column concentrations, which are then compared with the GEOS-Chem HCHO columns as a true value for the evaluation of the retrieval algorithm. In order to examine the retrieval sensitivity to the temporal variation of AMF, we compare the retrieved HCHO columns using monthly versus hourly AMF values and find that the HCHO vertical columns with hourly AMF are in better agreement with the true values, relative to those with monthly AMF. The differences between hourly and monthly AMF range from −0.70 to 0.73 in absolute value and are mainly caused by temporal changes of aerosol chemical composition: scattering aerosol enhances AMF, whereas absorbing aerosol reduces it. The temporal variations of AMF caused by aerosols increase and decrease HCHO VCDs by 84 % and 34 %, respectively, compared to HCHO VCDs using monthly AMF. We apply our calculated AMF with the aerosol effects to OMI HCHO products in March, 2006 when Asian dust storms occurred and find −18 %–33 % changes in the retrieved HCHO columns in East Asia. The impact of aerosols cannot be neglected for future geostationary observations.
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