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Long-range isentropic transport of stratospheric aerosols over Southern Hemisphere following the Calbuco eruption in April 2015

Abstract : After 43 years of inactivity, the Calbuco volcano which is located in the southern part of Chile erupted on 22 April 2015. The space-time evolutions (distribution and transport) of its aerosol plume are investigated by combining satellite (CALIOP, IASI, OMPS), in situ aerosol counting (LOAC OPC) and lidar observations, and the MIMOSA advection model. The Calbuco aerosol plume reached the Indian Ocean 1 week after the eruption. Over the Reunion Island site (21° S; 55.5° E), the aerosol signal was unambiguously enhanced in comparison with "background" conditions with a volcanic aerosol layer extending from 18 km to 21 km during the May–July period. All the data reveal an increase by a factor of ~ 2 in the SAOD (Stratospheric Aerosol Optical Depth) with respect to values observed before the eruption. The aerosol e-folding time is approximately 90 days. Microphysical measurements obtained before, during and after the eruption reflecting the impact of the Calbuco eruption on the lower stratospheric aerosol content have been analyzed over Reunion site. During the passage of the plume, the volcanic aerosol was characterized by an effective radius of 0.16 ± 0.02 µm with an unimodal lognormal size distribution and the aerosol number concentration appears 20 times higher than before and one year after the eruption. A tendency toward "background" conditions has been observed about one year after the eruption, by April 2016. The volcanic aerosol plume is advected eastward in the Southern Hemisphere and its latitudinal extent is clearly bounded by the subtropical barrier and the polar vortex. The transient behavior of the aerosol layers observed above Reunion Island between May and July 2015 reflects an inhomogeneous geographical distribution of the plume which is controlled by the latitudinal motion of these dynamical barriers.
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Nelson Bègue, Damien Vignelles, Gwenaël Berthet, Thierry Portafaix, Guillaume Payen, et al.. Long-range isentropic transport of stratospheric aerosols over Southern Hemisphere following the Calbuco eruption in April 2015. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, European Geosciences Union, 2017, 17 (24), pp.15019-15036. ⟨10.5194/acp-17-15019-2017⟩. ⟨insu-01545562⟩



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