P2.15 Analysis of Caribbean aerosol properties using AERONET and MISR

Wednesday, 30 June 2010
Exhibit Hall (DoubleTree by Hilton Portland)
Coreen M. Giesler, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL; and C. O. Haney, K. A. Chamales, L. Di Girolamo, R. M. Rauber, and G. Zhao

The shapes, sizes, and types of aerosol in the atmosphere are required to better understand their radiative and microphysical role in our climate system. Our focus is on Caribbean aerosols, such as those observed during the Rain In Cumulus over the Ocean (RICO) field campaign. Here, aerosols from marine aerosols to continental pollutants to Saharan dust particles have been observed. Comparisons were made between the aerosol optical depth (AOD) and Angstrom exponent (AE) values from the EOS-Terra Multiangle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) and Aerosol Robotic Network (AERONET). MISR and AERONET estimates of AOD and AE are well correlated, revealing AE values ranging from 0.03 to 1.5 and AOD values from 0.04 to 0.96. Some of the discrepancies between MISR and AERONET are examined in terms of retrieved aerosol type and potential island effects. We use the Hybrid Single Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory (HYSPLIT) model to compute simple air parcel trajectories using data from the National Centers for Environmental Prediction/National Center for Atmospheric Research Reanalysis Project. Backward trajectories computed from the RICO region at the time and location of the observations show potential source regions ranging from northern Africa to the continental United States to the Arctic. We aim to understand the observed variability in Caribbean aerosols and answer questions revolving around a quantitative link between the physical attributes of the aerosols, their history in our atmosphere, and the cloud and precipitation properties observed in the trade wind environment sampled during RICO.
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