Evaluating Sentinel-5P TROPOMI tropospheric NO2 column densities with airborne and Pandora spectrometers near New York City and Long Island Sound

Laura M. Judd, Jassim A. Al-Saadi, James J. Szykman, Lukas C. Valin, Scott J. Janz, Matthew G. Kowalewski, Henk J. Eskes, J. Pepijn Veefkind, Alexander Cede, More Authors

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
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Airborne and ground-based Pandora spectrometer NOspan classCombining double low line"inline-formula"2/span column measurements were collected during the 2018 Long Island Sound Tropospheric Ozone Study (LISTOS) in the New York City/Long Island Sound region, which coincided with early observations from the Sentinel-5P TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI) instrument. Both airborne- and ground-based measurements are used to evaluate the TROPOMI NOspan classCombining double low line"inline-formula"2/span Tropospheric Vertical Column (TrVC) product v1.2 in this region, which has high spatial and temporal heterogeneity in NOspan classCombining double low line"inline-formula"2/span. First, airborne and Pandora TrVCs are compared to evaluate the uncertainty of the airborne TrVC and establish the spatial representativeness of the Pandora observations. The 171 coincidences between Pandora and airborne TrVCs are found to be highly correlated (span classCombining double low line"inline-formula"ir/i2Combining double low line/spanthinsp;0.92 and slope of 1.03), with the largest individual differences being associated with high temporal and/or spatial variability. These reference measurements (Pandora and airborne) are complementary with respect to temporal coverage and spatial representativity. Pandora spectrometers can provide continuous long-term measurements but may lack areal representativity when operated in direct-sun mode. Airborne spectrometers are typically only deployed for short periods of time, but their observations are more spatially representative of the satellite measurements with the added capability of retrieving at subpixel resolutions of 250thinsp;mthinsp;span classCombining double low line"inline-formula"×/spanthinsp;250thinsp;m over the entire TROPOMI pixels they overfly. Thus, airborne data are more correlated with TROPOMI measurements (span classCombining double low line"inline-formula"ir/i2Combining double low line0.96/span) than Pandora measurements are with TROPOMI (span classCombining double low line"inline-formula"ir/i2Combining double low line0.84/span). The largest outliers between TROPOMI and the reference measurements appear to stem from too spatially coarse a priori surface reflectivity (0.5span classCombining double low line"inline-formula"g /span) over bright urban scenes. In this work, this results during cloud-free scenes that, at times, are affected by errors in the TROPOMI cloud pressure retrieval impacting the calculation of tropospheric air mass factors. This factor causes a high bias in TROPOMI TrVCs of 4thinsp;%-11thinsp;%. Excluding these cloud-impacted points, TROPOMI has an overall low bias of 19thinsp;%-33thinsp;% during the LISTOS timeframe of June-September 2018. Part of this low bias is caused by coarse a priori profile input from the TM5-MP model; replacing thesespan idCombining double low line"page6114"/ profiles with those from a 12thinsp;km North American Model-Community Multiscale Air Quality (NAMCMAQ) analysis results in a 12thinsp;%-14thinsp;% increase in the TrVCs. Even with this improvement, the TROPOMI-NAMCMAQ TrVCs have a 7thinsp;%-19thinsp;% low bias, indicating needed improvement in a priori assumptions in the air mass factor calculation. Future work should explore additional impacts of a priori inputs to further assess the remaining low biases in TROPOMI using these datasets./.

Original languageEnglish
Article number322
Pages (from-to)6113-6140
Number of pages28
JournalAtmospheric Measurement Techniques
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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