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Worldwide spatiotemporal atmospheric ammonia (NH3) columns variability revealed by satellite

Abstract : We exploit six years of measurements from the IASI/MetOp-A instrument to identify seasonal patterns and inter-annual variability of atmospheric NH3. This is achieved by analyzing the time evolution of the monthly-mean NH3 columns in 12 subcontinental areas around the world, simultaneously considering measurements from IASI morning and evening overpasses. For most regions, IASI has a sufficient sensitivity throughout the years to capture the seasonal patterns of NH3 columns, and we show that each region is characterized by a well-marked and distinctive cycle, with maxima mainly related to underlying emission processes. The largest column abundances and seasonal amplitudes throughout the years are found in Southwestern Asia,with maxima twice as large as what is observed in Southeastern China. The relation between emission sources and retrieved NH3 columns is emphasized at smaller regional scale by inferring a climatology of the month of maximum columns.
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Martin van Damme, Jan Willem Erisman, Lieven Clarisse, Enrico Dammers, Simon Whitburn, et al.. Worldwide spatiotemporal atmospheric ammonia (NH3) columns variability revealed by satellite. Geophysical Research Letters, American Geophysical Union, 2015, 42 (20), pp.8660-8668. ⟨10.1002/2015GL065496⟩. ⟨insu-01202973⟩

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