Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2024-77
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2024-77
29 Jan 2024
 | 29 Jan 2024
Status: this preprint is open for discussion and under review for Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).

Ammonia (NH3) in the UTLS: GLORIA airborne measurements for CAMS model evaluation in the Asian Monsoon and in biomass burning plumes above the South Atlantic

Sören Johansson, Michael Höpfner, Felix Friedl-Vallon, Norbert Glatthor, Thomas Gulde, Vincent Huijnen, Anne Kleinert, Erik Kretschmer, Guido Maucher, Tom Neubert, Hans Nordmeyer, Christof Piesch, Peter Preusse, Martin Riese, Björn-Martin Sinnhuber, Jörn Ungermann, Gerald Wetzel, and Wolfgang Woiwode

Abstract. Ammonia (NH3) is the major alkaline species in the atmosphere and plays an important role in aerosol formation, which affects local air quality and the radiation budget. NH3 in the Upper Troposphere and Lower Stratosphere (UTLS) is difficult to detect and only limited observations are available. We present two dimensional trace gas measurements of NH3 obtained by the airborne infrared imaging limb sounder GLORIA (Gimballed Limb Observer for Radiance Imaging of the Atmosphere) that has been operated onboard the research aircraft Geophysica within the Asian Monsoon during the StratoClim campaign (July 2017) and onboard HALO (High Altitude and Long Range Research Aircraft) above the South Atlantic during the SouthTRAC campaign (September–November 2019). We compare these GLORIA measurements in the UTLS with results of the CAMS (Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service) reanalysis and forecast model. The GLORIA observations reveal large enhancements of NH3 of more than 1 ppbv in the Asian Monsoon upper troposphere, but no clear indication of NH3 in biomass burning plumes in the upper troposphere above the South Atlantic above the instrument's detection limit of around 20 pptv. In contrast, CAMS reanalysis and forecast simulation results indicate strong enhancements of NH3 in both measured scenarios. Comparisons of other retrieved pollution gases, such as peroxyacetyl nitrate (PAN) show the ability of CAMS models to reproduce the biomass burning plumes above the South Atlantic in general. However, NH3 concentrations are largely overestimated by the CAMS models within these plumes. We suggest that emission strengths used by CAMS models are of different accuracy for biomass burning and agricultural sources in the Asian Monsoon. Further, we suggest that loss processes of NH3 during transport to the upper troposphere may be underestimated for the biomass burning cases above the South Atlantic. Since NH3 is strongly undersampled, in particular at higher altitudes, we hope for regular vertically resolved measurements of NH3 from the proposed CAIRT mission to strengthen our understanding of this important trace gas in the atmosphere.

Sören Johansson, Michael Höpfner, Felix Friedl-Vallon, Norbert Glatthor, Thomas Gulde, Vincent Huijnen, Anne Kleinert, Erik Kretschmer, Guido Maucher, Tom Neubert, Hans Nordmeyer, Christof Piesch, Peter Preusse, Martin Riese, Björn-Martin Sinnhuber, Jörn Ungermann, Gerald Wetzel, and Wolfgang Woiwode

Status: open (until 14 Mar 2024)

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  • RC1: 'Comment on egusphere-2024-77', Anonymous Referee #1, 16 Feb 2024 reply
Sören Johansson, Michael Höpfner, Felix Friedl-Vallon, Norbert Glatthor, Thomas Gulde, Vincent Huijnen, Anne Kleinert, Erik Kretschmer, Guido Maucher, Tom Neubert, Hans Nordmeyer, Christof Piesch, Peter Preusse, Martin Riese, Björn-Martin Sinnhuber, Jörn Ungermann, Gerald Wetzel, and Wolfgang Woiwode
Sören Johansson, Michael Höpfner, Felix Friedl-Vallon, Norbert Glatthor, Thomas Gulde, Vincent Huijnen, Anne Kleinert, Erik Kretschmer, Guido Maucher, Tom Neubert, Hans Nordmeyer, Christof Piesch, Peter Preusse, Martin Riese, Björn-Martin Sinnhuber, Jörn Ungermann, Gerald Wetzel, and Wolfgang Woiwode

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Short summary
We present airborne infra red limb sounding GLORIA measurements of ammonia in the upper troposphere of air masses within the Asian Monsoon, and of air masses connected with biomass burning. In comparisons with CAMS model data, we find that the model is well reproducing the measured enhanced ammonia within the Asian Monsoon, but not within biomass burning plumes, where no enhanced ammonia is measured in the upper troposphere, but considerable amounts of ammonia are simulated by CAMS.