Satellite remote-sensing capability to assess tropospheric-column ratios of...

Johnson, M. S., A. Souri, S. Philip, R. Kumar, A. Naeger, J. Geddes, L. Judd, S. Janz, H. Chong, and J. Sullivan (2023), Satellite remote-sensing capability to assess tropospheric-column ratios of formaldehyde and nitrogen dioxide: case study during the Long Island Sound Tropospheric Ozone Study 2018 (LISTOS 2018) field campaign, Atmos. Meas. Tech., 16, 2431-2454, doi:10.5194/amt-16-2431-2023.

Satellite retrievals of tropospheric-column formaldehyde (HCHO) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2 ) are frequently used to investigate the sensitivity of ozone (O3 ) production to emissions of nitrogen oxides and volatile organic carbon compounds. This study inter-compared the systematic biases and uncertainties in retrievals of NO2 and HCHO, as well as resulting HCHO–NO2 ratios (FNRs), from two commonly applied satellite sensors to investigate O3 production sensitivities (Ozone Monitoring Instrument, OMI, and TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument, TROPOMI) using airborne remote-sensing data taken during the Long Island Sound Tropospheric Ozone Study 2018 between 25 June and 6 September 2018. Compared to aircraft-based HCHO and NO2 observations, the accuracy of OMI and TROPOMI were magnitude-dependent with high biases in clean environments and a tendency towards more accurate comparisons to even low biases in moderately polluted to polluted regions. OMI and TROPOMI NO2 systematic biases were similar in magnitude (normalized median bias, NMB = 5 %–6 %; linear regression slope ≈ 0.5–0.6), with OMI having a high median bias and TROPOMI resulting in small low biases. Campaignaveraged uncertainties in the three satellite retrievals (NASA OMI; Quality Assurance for Essential Climate Variables, QA4ECV OMI; and TROPOMI) of NO2 were generally similar, with TROPOMI retrievals having slightly less spread in the data compared to OMI. The three satellite products differed more when evaluating HCHO retrievals. Campaignaveraged tropospheric HCHO retrievals all had linear regression slopes ∼ 0.5 and NMBs of 39 %, 17 %, 13 %, and 23 % for NASA OMI, QA4ECV OMI, and TROPOMI at finer (0.05◦ × 0.05◦ ) and coarser (0.15◦ × 0.15◦ ) spatial resolution, respectively. Campaign-averaged uncertainty values (root mean square error, RMSE) in NASA and QA4ECV OMI HCHO retrievals were ∼ 9.0 × 1015 molecules cm−2 (∼ 50 %–55 % of mean column abundance), and the higherspatial-resolution retrievals from TROPOMI resulted in RMSE values ∼ 30 % lower. Spatially averaging TROPOMI tropospheric-column HCHO, along with NO2 and FNRs, to resolutions similar to the OMI reduced the uncertainty in

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Research Program: 
Atmospheric Composition
Upper Atmosphere Research Program (UARP)
Funding Sources: 
Matthew S. Johnson and Sajeev Philip (grant no. 80NSSC20K1182), Rajesh Kumar (grant no. 80NSSC20K1234), Amir H. Souri (grant no. 80NSSC21K1333), and Jeffrey Geddes (grant no. 80NSSC20K1033) were funded for this work through the NASA Aura Science Team (grant no. NNH19ZDA001N-AURAST).