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Constraining chemical transport PM2.5 modeling outputs using surface monitor...

Friberg, M. D., R. Kahn, J. Limbacher, K. W. Appel, and J. A. Mulholland (2018), Constraining chemical transport PM2.5 modeling outputs using surface monitor measurements and satellite retrievals: application over the San Joaquin Valley, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 12891-12913, doi:10.5194/acp-18-12891-2018.

Advances in satellite retrieval of aerosol type can improve the accuracy of near-surface air quality characterization by providing broad regional context and decreasing metric uncertainties and errors. The frequent, spatially extensive and radiometrically consistent instantaneous constraints can be especially useful in areas away from ground monitors and progressively downwind of emission sources. We present a physical approach to constraining regional-scale estimates of PM2.5 , its major chemical component species estimates, and related uncertainty estimates of chemical transport model (CTM; e.g., the Community Multi-scale Air Quality Model) outputs. This approach uses ground-based monitors where available, combined with aerosol optical depth and qualitative constraints on aerosol size, shape, and light-absorption properties from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) on the NASA Earth Observing System’s Terra satellite. The CTM complements these data by providing complete spatial and temporal coverage. Unlike widely used approaches that train statistical regression models, the technique developed here leverages CTM physical constraints such as the conservation of aerosol mass and meteorological consistency, independent of observations. The CTM also aids in identifying relationships between observed species concentrations and emission sources.

Aerosol air mass types over populated regions of central California are characterized using satellite data acquired during the 2013 San Joaquin field deployment of the NASA Deriving Information on Surface Conditions from Column and Vertically Resolved Observations Relevant to Air Quality (DISCOVER-AQ) project. We investigate the optimal application of incorporating 275 m horizontal-resolution aerosol air-mass-type maps and total-column aerosol optical depth from the MISR Research Aerosol retrieval algorithm (RA) into regional-scale CTM output. The impact on surface PM2.5 fields progressively downwind of large single sources is evaluated using contemporaneous surface observations. Spatiotemporal R 2 and RMSE values for the model, constrained by both satellite and surface monitor measurements based on 10-fold cross-validation, are 0.79 and 0.33 for

2− PM2.5 , 0.88 and 0.65 for NO− 3 , 0.78 and 0.23 for SO4 ,

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Research Program: 
Applied Sciences Program (ASP)
Atmospheric Composition Modeling and Analysis Program (ACMAP)