S174 A Study of the Effect of Meteorology on Atmospheric Visibility

Sunday, 10 January 2016
Hall E ( New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center)
Shaun T. Howe, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY; and N. Mahowald and V. Naik

Atmospheric visibility can be used as a proxy for atmospheric concentrations of aerosols such as particulate matter and surface ozone. Not only do these concentrations affect our health but they also affect our safety in regards to aviation. Due to the importance of visibility monitoring for aviation purposes, there are large datasets are at our disposal for examining the the relationship between meteorology and atmospheric visibility. One such dataset that is being used for this analysis is the Global Summary of Day Dataset (GSOD). This dataset consists of meteorological variables alongside visibility allowing for an analysis of the observed meteorological parameters and the observed visibility values for the same locations as well as the same times. Atmospheric parameters such as relative humidity, specific humidity, temperature, and sea level pressure are examined in order to gain an understanding of their relationships to visibility. In order to further the breadth of this analysis, atmospheric stagnation is also examined. Stagnation provides ideal conditions for low visibilities and has been previously studied in relation to aerosol concentrations. Little has been done in regards to relating stagnation to atmospheric visibility and thus provides an interesting meteorological phenomenon to relate to this study.
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