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The Space Carbon Observatory (SCARBO) concept: assessment of XCO2 and XCH4 retrieval performance

Abstract : Several single-platform satellite missions have been designed during the past decades in order to retrieve the atmospheric concentrations of anthropogenic greenhouse gases (GHG), initiating worldwide efforts towards better monitoring of their sources and sinks. To set up a future operational system for anthropogenic GHG emission monitoring, both revisit frequency and spatial resolution need to be improved. The Space Carbon Observatory (SCARBO) project aims at significantly increasing the revisit frequency of spaceborne GHG measurements, while reaching state-of-the-art precision requirements, by implementing a concept of small satellite constellation. It would accommodate a miniaturised GHG sensor named NanoCarb coupled with an aerosol instrument, the multi-angle polarimeter SPEXone. More specifically, the NanoCarb sensor is a static Fabry-Pérot imaging interferometer with a 2.3×2.3 km2 spatial resolution and 200 km swath. It samples a truncated interferogram at optical path differences (OPDs) optimally sensitive to all the geophysical parameters necessary to retrieve column-averaged dry-air mole fractions of CO2 and CH4 (hereafter XCO2 and XCH4). In this work, we present the Level 2 performance assessment of the concept proposed in the SCARBO project. We perform inverse radiative transfer to retrieve XCO2 and XCH4 directly from synthetic NanoCarb truncated interferograms and provide their systematic and random errors, column vertical sensitivities, and degrees of freedom as a function of five scattering-error-critical atmospheric and observational parameters. We show that NanoCarb XCO2 and XCH4 systematic retrieval errors can be greatly reduced with SPEXone posterior outputs used as improved prior aerosol constraints. For two-thirds of the soundings, located at the centre of the 200 km NanoCarb swath, XCO2 and XCH4 random errors span 0.5-1 ppm and 4-6 ppb, respectively, compliant with their respective 1 ppm and 6 ppb precision objectives. Finally, these Level 2 performance results are parameterised as a function of the explored scattering-error-critical atmospheric and observational parameters in order to time-efficiently compute extensive L2 error maps for future CO2 and CH4 flux estimation performance studies.
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Contributor : Nathalie POTHIER Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Thursday, September 15, 2022 - 1:58:49 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, October 19, 2022 - 3:55:38 AM


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Matthieu Dogniaux, Cyril Crevoisier, Silvère Gousset, Étienne Le Coarer, Yann Ferrec, et al.. The Space Carbon Observatory (SCARBO) concept: assessment of XCO2 and XCH4 retrieval performance. Atmospheric Measurement Techniques, 2022, 15, pp.4835-4858. ⟨10.5194/amt-15-4835-2022⟩. ⟨insu-03778102⟩



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