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The sensitivity of the colour of dust in MSG-SEVIRI Desert Dust infrared composite imagery to surface and atmospheric conditions

2019, Banks, J.R., Hünerbein, A., Heinold, B., Brindley, H.E., Deneke, H., Schepanski, K.

Infrared "Desert Dust" composite imagery taken by the Spinning Enhanced Visible and InfraRed Imager (SEVIRI), onboard the Meteosat Second Generation (MSG) series of satellites above the equatorial East Atlantic, has been widely used for more than a decade to identify and track the presence of dust storms from and over the Sahara Desert, the Middle East, and southern Africa. Dust is characterised by distinctive pink colours in the Desert Dust false-colour imagery; however, the precise colour is influenced by numerous environmental properties, such as the surface thermal emissivity and skin temperature, the atmospheric water vapour content, the quantity and height of dust in the atmosphere, and the infrared optical properties of the dust itself. For this paper, simulations of SEVIRI infrared measurements and imagery have been performed using a modelling system, which combines dust concentrations simulated by the aerosol transport model COSMO-MUSCAT (COSMO: COnsortium for Small-scale MOdelling; MUSCAT: MUltiScale Chemistry Aerosol Transport Model) with radiative transfer simulations from the RTTOV (Radiative Transfer for TOVS) model. Investigating the sensitivity of the synthetic infrared imagery to the environmental properties over a 6-month summertime period from 2011 to 2013, it is confirmed that water vapour is a major control on the apparent colour of dust, obscuring its presence when the moisture content is high. Of the three SEVIRI channels used in the imagery (8.7, 10.8, and 12.0 μm), the channel at 10.8 μm has the highest atmospheric transmittance and is therefore the most sensitive to the surface skin temperature. A direct consequence of this sensitivity is that the background desert surface exhibits a strong diurnal cycle in colour, with light blue colours possible during the day and purple hues prevalent at night. In dusty scenes, the clearest pink colours arise from high-altitude dust in dry atmospheres. Elevated dust influences the dust colour primarily by reducing the contrast in atmospheric transmittance above the dust layer between the SEVIRI channels at 10.8 and 12.0 μm, thereby boosting red and pink colours in the imagery. Hence, the higher the dust altitude, the higher the threshold column moisture needed for dust to be obscured in the imagery: for a sample of dust simulated to have an aerosol optical depth (AOD) at 550 nm of 2-3 at an altitude of 3-4 km, the characteristic colour of the dust may only be impaired when the total column water vapour is particularly moist ('39 mm). Meanwhile, dust close to the surface (altitude < 1 km) is only likely to be apparent when the atmosphere is particularly dry and when the surface is particularly hot, requiring column moisture/13 mm and skin temperatures '314 K, and is highly unlikely to be apparent when the skin temperature is/300 K. Such low-altitude dust will regularly be almost invisible within the imagery, since it will usually be beneath much of the atmospheric water vapour column. It is clear that the interpretation of satellite-derived dust imagery is greatly aided by knowledge of the background environment.

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Dust mass, cloud condensation nuclei, and ice-nucleating particle profiling with polarization lidar: Updated POLIPHON conversion factors from global AERONET analysis

2019, Ansmann, A., Mamouri, R.-E., Hofer, J., Baars, H., Althausen, D., Abdullaev, S.F.

The POLIPHON (Polarization Lidar Photometer Networking) method permits the retrieval of particle number, surface area, and volume concentration for dust and non-dust aerosol components. The obtained microphysical properties are used to estimate height profiles of particle mass, cloud condensation nucleus (CCN) and ice-nucleating particle (INP) concentrations. The conversion of aerosol-type-dependent particle extinction coefficients, derived from polarization lidar observations, into the aerosol microphysical properties (number, surface area, volume) forms the central part of the POLIPHON computations. The conversion parameters are determined from Aerosol Robotic Network (AERONET) aerosol climatologies of optical and microphysical properties. In this article, we focus on the dust-related POLIPHON retrieval products and present an extended set of dust conversion factors considering all relevant deserts around the globe. We apply the new conversion factor set to a dust measurement with polarization lidar in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, in central Asia. Strong aerosol layering was observed with mineral dust advected from Kazakhstan (0-2km height), Iran (2-5km), the Arabian peninsula (5-7km), and the Sahara (8-10km). POLIPHON results obtained with different sets of conversion parameters were contrasted in this central Asian case study and permitted an estimation of the conversion uncertainties.

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The impact of mineral dust on cloud formation during the Saharan dust event in April 2014 over Europe

2018, Weger, M., Heinold, B., Engler, C., Schumann, U., Seifert, A., Fößig, R., Voigt, C., Baars, H., Blahak, U., Borrmann, S., Hoose, C., Kaufmann, S., Krämer, M., Seifert, P., Senf, F., Schneider, J., Tegen, I.

A regional modeling study on the impact of desert dust on cloud formation is presented for a major Saharan dust outbreak over Europe from 2 to 5 April 2014. The dust event coincided with an extensive and dense cirrus cloud layer, suggesting an influence of dust on atmospheric ice nucleation. Using interactive simulation with the regional dust model COSMO-MUSCAT, we investigate cloud and precipitation representation in the model and test the sensitivity of cloud parameters to dust-cloud and dust-radiation interactions of the simulated dust plume. We evaluate model results with ground-based and spaceborne remote sensing measurements of aerosol and cloud properties, as well as the in situ measurements obtained during the ML-CIRRUS aircraft campaign. A run of the model with single-moment bulk microphysics without online dust feedback considerably underestimated cirrus cloud cover over Germany in the comparison with infrared satellite imagery. This was also reflected in simulated upper-Tropospheric ice water content (IWC), which accounted for only 20 % of the observed values. The interactive dust simulation with COSMO-MUSCAT, including a two-moment bulk microphysics scheme and dust-cloud as well as dust-radiation feedback, in contrast, led to significant improvements. The modeled cirrus cloud cover and IWC were by at least a factor of 2 higher in the relevant altitudes compared to the noninteractive model run. We attributed these improvements mainly to enhanced deposition freezing in response to the high mineral dust concentrations. This was corroborated further in a significant decrease in ice particle radii towards more realistic values, compared to in situ measurements from the ML-CIRRUS aircraft campaign. By testing different empirical ice nucleation parameterizations, we further demonstrate that remaining uncertainties in the ice-nucleating properties of mineral dust affect the model performance at least as significantly as including the online representation of the mineral dust distribution. Dust-radiation interactions played a secondary role for cirrus cloud formation, but contributed to a more realistic representation of precipitation by suppressing moist convection in southern Germany. In addition, a too-low specific humidity in the 7 to 10 km altitude range in the boundary conditions was identified as one of the main reasons for misrepresentation of cirrus clouds in this model study.

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Aerosol measurements with a shipborne Sun-sky-lunar photometer and collocated multiwavelength Raman polarization lidar over the Atlantic Ocean

2019, Yin, Z., Ansmann, A., Baars, H., Seifert, P., Engelmann, R., Radenz, M., Jimenez, C., Herzog, A., Ohneiser, K., Hanbuch, K., Blarel, L., Goloub, P., Victori, S., Maupin, F.

A shipborne Sun-sky-lunar photometer of type CE318-T was tested during two trans-Atlantic cruises aboard the German research vessel Polarstern from 54ĝ N to 54ĝ S in May/June and December 2018. The continuous observations of the motion-stabilized shipborne CE318-T enabled the first-time observation of a full diurnal cycle of aerosol optical depth (AOD) and column-mean Ångström coefficient of a mixed dust-smoke episode. The latitudinal distribution of the AOD from the shipborne CE318-T, Raman lidar and MICROTOPS II shows the same trend with highest values in the dust belt from 0 to 20ĝ N and overall low values in the Southern Hemisphere. The linear-regression coefficients of determination between MICROTOPS II and the CE318-T were 0.988, 0.987, 0.994 and 0.994 for AODs at 380, 440, 500 and 870 nm and 0.896 for the Ångström exponent at 440-870 nm. The root-mean-squared differences of AOD at 380, 440, 500 and 870 nm were 0.015, 0.013, 0.010 and 0.009, respectively.

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CCN measurements at the Princess Elisabeth Antarctica research station during three austral summers

2019, Herenz, P., Wex, H., Mangold, A., Laffineur, Q., Gorodetskaya, I.V., Fleming, Z.L., Panagi, M., Stratmann, F.

For three austral summer seasons (2013-2016, each from December to February) aerosol particles arriving at the Belgian Antarctic research station Princess Elisabeth (PE) in Dronning Maud Land in East Antarctica were characterized. This included number concentrations of total aerosol particles (N CN ) and cloud condensation nuclei (N CCN ), the particle number size distribution (PNSD), the aerosol particle hygroscopicity, and the influence of the air mass origin on N CN and N CCN . In general N CN was found to range from 40 to 6700cm -3 , with a median of 333cm -3 , while N CCN was found to cover a range between less than 10 and 1300cm-3 for supersaturations (SSs) between 0.1% and 0.7%. It is shown that the aerosol is dominated by the Aitken mode, being characterized by a significant amount of small, and therefore likely secondarily formed, aerosol particles, with 94% and 36% of the aerosol particles smaller than 90 and ≈35nm, respectively. Measurements of the basic meteorological parameters as well as the history of the air masses arriving at the measurement station indicate that the station is influenced by both marine air masses originating from the Southern Ocean and coastal areas around Antarctica (marine events - MEs) and continental air masses (continental events - CEs). CEs, which were defined as instances when the air masses spent at least 90% of the time over the Antarctic continent during the last 10 days prior to arrival at the measurements station, occurred during 61% of the time during which measurements were done. CEs came along with rather constant N CN and N CCN values, which we denote as Antarctic continental background concentrations. MEs, however, cause large fluctuations in N CN and N CCN , with low concentrations likely caused by scavenging due to precipitation and high concentrations likely originating from new particle formation (NPF) based on marine precursors. The application of HYSPLIT back trajectories in form of the potential source contribution function (PSCF) analysis indicate that the region of the Southern Ocean is a potential source of Aitken mode particles. On the basis of PNSDs, together with N CCN measured at an SS of 0.1%, median values for the critical diameter for cloud droplet activation and the aerosol particle hygroscopicity parameter ° were determined to be 110nm and 1, respectively. For particles larger than ĝ‰110nm the Southern Ocean together with parts of the Antarctic ice shelf regions were found to be potential source regions. While the former may contribute sea spray particles directly, the contribution of the latter may be due to the emission of sea salt aerosol particles, released from snow particles from surface snow layers, e.g., during periods of high wind speed, leading to drifting or blowing snow. The region of the Antarctic inland plateau, however, was not found to feature a significant source region for aerosol particles in general or page276 for cloud condensation nuclei measured at the PE station in the austral summer.

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Ship-borne aerosol profiling with lidar over the Atlantic Ocean: From pure marine conditions to complex dust-smoke mixtures

2018, Bohlmann, S., Baars, H., Radenz, M., Engelmann, R., Macke, A.

The multi-wavelength Raman lidar PollyXT has been regularly operated aboard the research vessel Polarstern on expeditions across the Atlantic Ocean from north to south and vice versa. The lidar measurements of the RV Polarstern cruises PS95 from Bremerhaven, Germany, to Cape Town, Republic of South Africa (November 2015), and PS98 from Punta Arenas, Chile, to Bremerhaven, Germany (April/May 2016), are presented and analysed in detail. The latest set-up of PollyXT allows improved coverage of the marine boundary layer (MBL) due to an additional near-range receiver. Three case studies provide an overview of the aerosol detected over the Atlantic Ocean. In the first case, marine conditions were observed near South Africa on the autumn cruise PS95. Values of optical properties (depolarisation ratios close to zero, lidar ratios of 23 sr at 355 and 532 nm) within the MBL indicate pure marine aerosol. A layer of dried marine aerosol, indicated by an increase of the particle depolarisation ratio to about 10% at 355 nm (9% at 532 nm) and thus confirming the non-sphericity of these particles, could be detected on top of the MBL. On the same cruise, an almost pure Saharan dust plume was observed near the Canary Islands, presented in the second case. The third case deals with several layers of Saharan dust partly mixed with biomass-burning smoke measured on PS98 near the Cabo Verde islands. While the MBL was partly mixed with dust in the pure Saharan dust case, an almost marine MBL was observed in the third case. A statistical analysis showed latitudinal differences in the optical properties within the MBL, caused by the downmixing of dust in the tropics and anthropogenic influences in the northern latitudes, whereas the optical properties of the MBL in the Southern Hemisphere correlate with typical marine values. The particle depolarisation ratio of dried marine layers ranged between 4 and 9% at 532 nm. Night measurements from PS95 and PS98 were used to illustrate the potential of aerosol classification using lidar ratio, particle depolarisation ratio at 355 and 532 nm, and Angström exponent. Lidar ratio and particle depolarisation ratio have been found to be the main indicator for particle type, whereas the Ångström exponent is rather variable.

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The global aerosol-climate model echam6.3-ham2.3 -Part 1: Aerosol evaluation

2019, Tegen, I., Neubauer, D., Ferrachat, S., Drian, C.S.-L., Bey, I., Schutgens, N., Stier, P., Watson-Parris, D., Stanelle, T., Schmidt, H., Rast, S., Kokkola, H., Schultz, M., Schroeder, S., Daskalakis, N., Barthel, S., Heinold, B., Lohmann, U.

We introduce and evaluate aerosol simulations with the global aerosol-climate model ECHAM6.3-HAM2.3, which is the aerosol component of the fully coupled aerosol-chemistry-climate model ECHAM-HAMMOZ. Both the host atmospheric climate model ECHAM6.3 and the aerosol model HAM2.3 were updated from previous versions. The updated version of the HAM aerosol model contains improved parameterizations of aerosol processes such as cloud activation, as well as updated emission fields for anthropogenic aerosol species and modifications in the online computation of sea salt and mineral dust aerosol emissions. Aerosol results from nudged and free-running simulations for the 10-year period 2003 to 2012 are compared to various measurements of aerosol properties. While there are regional deviations between the model and observations, the model performs well overall in terms of aerosol optical thickness, but may underestimate coarse-mode aerosol concentrations to some extent so that the modeled particles are smaller than indicated by the observations. Sulfate aerosol measurements in the US and Europe are reproduced well by the model, while carbonaceous aerosol species are biased low. Both mineral dust and sea salt aerosol concentrations are improved compared to previous versions of ECHAM-HAM. The evaluation of the simulated aerosol distributions serves as a basis for the suitability of the model for simulating aerosol-climate interactions in a changing climate.