11th Conference on Atmospheric Chemistry
Special Symposium on Aerosol–Cloud–Climate Interactions


Satellite Data for Assessing Air Quality from the Atmospheric Science Data Center

Nancy A. Ritchey, SSAI, Hampton, VA

The Atmospheric Science Data Center at NASA Langley Research Center is the archive and distribution center for data from the Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observations (CALIPSO) and Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer (TES) instruments.

CALIPSO was launched into a sun-synchronous orbit on April 28, 2006, where it joined the A-Train constellation of four other Earth-orbiting satellites: Aqua, Aura, CloudSat and Parasol. The primary objective of CALIPSO's three-year mission is to make a global survey of the vertical structure of aerosols and clouds, and their physical properties.

CALIPSO comprises three instruments, the Cloud-Aerosol LIdar with Orthogonal Polarization (CALIOP), the Imaging Infrared Radiometer (IIR), and the Wide Field Camera (WFC). CALIOP is a two-wavelength, polarization-sensitive lidar that provides information about the composition of clouds, the abundance and sizes of aerosols, and the altitudes of cloud and aerosol layers. The IIR measures outgoing radiation at three wavelengths in the thermal infrared window (8.65 mm, 10.6 mm, and 12.0 mm) to determine cloud emissivity and particle size. The high resolution, nadir-viewing WFC images the region around the lidar and IIR measurements in a single spectral channel (645 nm), which is matched to Band 1 of the MODIS instrument on the Aqua satellite in the A-Train, to provide context for the data from the other instruments.

CALIPSO Level 2 products include an aerosol extinction profile product, an aerosol layer product and a vertical feature mask product that includes aerosol type information.

TES flies on Aura, the third of NASA's Earth Observing System spacecraft, on July 15, 2004. The primary objective of TES is to make global, three-dimensional measurements of ozone and other chemical species involved in its formation and destruction. The NASA Langley Atmospheric Science Data Center (ASDC) is the archive and distribution center for data from the TES instrument.

The TES instrument is a high-resolution imaging infrared Fourier-transform spectrometer that operates in both nadir and limb-sounding modes. TES standard Level 2 data products include global-scale vertical profile and total column measurements of ozone, water vapor, HDO, carbon monoxide, methane, and nitric acid for 16 orbits every other day. Additional products include atmospheric temperature profiles, surface temperatures, and land surface emissivity. A recent reprocessing effort has produced a new version of the data which includes additional limb species and a new summary product.

In the past year, Level 3 TES products have been released which provide daily or monthly global survey chemical species data interpolated onto a global latitude/longitude grid at selected pressure levels. Browse images for the Level 3 and associated Level 2 data are available with these new Level 3 products.

Between global surveys, TES can make special observations using its ability to point at a specific location for a few minutes on any given orbit. This capability is used for targets such as gas-emitting volcanoes, for regional air quality studies, and in conjunction with field campaigns.

The ASDC provides data access, services and tools for over 40 projects in the discipline areas of Earth's radiation budget, clouds, aerosols and tropospheric chemistry. Additional information is available from our web site, http://eosweb.larc.nasa.gov.

Joint Poster Session 1, Air quality modeling and evaluation
Monday, 12 January 2009, 2:30 PM-4:00 PM, Hall 5

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