Session 6.1 Global Aerosol Measurements from the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System Satellite Lidar

Tuesday, 11 July 2006: 10:30 AM
Hall of Ideas G-J (Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center)
James D. Spinhirne, NASA/GSFC, Greenbelt, MD; and D. L. Hlavka, S. P. Palm, and W. D. Hart

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The Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) on board the Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite provides space-borne laser observations of distribution of atmospheric aerosol layers. Full observations began in October 2003 and have continued in three four-to-six week operation periods each year since. Aerosol profile measurement are made at two wavelengths, 532 and1064 nm, and data products are produced for the height distribution of aerosol scattering, the boundaries of layers including multiple and elevated layers, the optical depth of layers and calculated aerosol extinction. The data products are now in release through the NASA EOS data distribution system. Global summaries of the aerosol distribution observed by GLAS have been produced and are compared to other satellite retrievals such as MODIS and the output of global aerosol transport models. The measurements show the relation between the hieght distribution of aerosol and the overlap with clouds. The GLAS aerosol data products will be described and new results on the nature of the global aerosol distribution will be described.
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