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Measuring air pollution from thermal infrared satellite observations: when, where and how?

Abstract : Air quality has become a major concern in many megacities and highly populated areas. In those regions, there is a need to properly quantify the emissions of pollutants and to understand their transport pathways and their reactivity in the atmosphere. In recent years, there has been important progress in the monitoring of air quality from satellites. Among the instruments currently in orbit, those operating in the thermal infrared have usually their maximum sensitivity in the midtroposphere and were thought to be inadequate for probing the near-surface atmospheric composition. This has, however, been challenged recently with IASI measurements of surface air pollution in specific geophysical conditions, characterized in particular by large temperature differences between the ground and the air above it. This work will review the principal results obtained with IASI on the sounding of the near-surface atmospheric composition, especially above pollution hotspots. The presentation will then address the following questions: where and when is IASI sensitive to the near-surface atmosphere? How large and how variable is the sensitivity to near-surface pollutants? Which are the parameters that drive this variability? Answers to these questions will be given for sulfur dioxide (SO2) and carbon monoxide (CO) on the basis of theoretical sensitivity studies (radiative transfer simulations and retrieval diagnostics) and real test cases. Based on the results, the capability of IASI to monitor air quality will be revisited.
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Submitted on : Sunday, April 24, 2016 - 5:47:30 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, December 12, 2020 - 12:10:04 PM


  • HAL Id : insu-01306505, version 1


Sophie Bauduin, Lieven Clarisse, Cathy Clerbaux, Pierre-François Coheur. Measuring air pollution from thermal infrared satellite observations: when, where and how?. 4th IASI International Conference, Apr 2016, Antibes Juan-Les-Pins, France. ⟨insu-01306505⟩



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