Disclaimer: This material is being kept online for historical purposes. Though accurate at the time of publication, it is no longer being updated. The page may contain broken links or outdated information, and parts may not function in current web browsers. Visit https://espo.nasa.gov for information about our current projects.


Quantifying stratosphere-troposphere transport of ozone using balloon- T borne...

Tarasick, D. W., T. K. Carey-Smith, W. K. Hocking, O. Moeini, H. He, J. Liu, M. K. Osman, A. M. Thompson, B. Johnson, S. Oltmans, and J. T. Merrill (2019), Quantifying stratosphere-troposphere transport of ozone using balloon- T borne ozonesondes, radar windprofilers and trajectory models, Atmos. Environ., 198, 496-509, doi:10.1016/j.atmosenv.2018.10.040.

In a series of 10-day campaigns in Ontario and Quebec, Canada, between 2005 and 2007, ozonesondes were launched twice daily in conjunction with continuous high-resolution wind-profiling radar measurements. Windprofilers can measure rapid changes in the height of the tropopause, and in some cases follow stratospheric intrusions. Observed stratospheric intrusions were studied with the aid of a Lagrangian particle dispersion model and the Canadian operational weather forecast system. Definite stratosphere-troposphere transport (STT) events occurred approximately every 2–3 days during the spring and summer campaigns, whereas during autumn and winter, the frequency was reduced to every 4–5 days. Although most events reached the lower troposphere, only three events appear to have significantly contributed to ozone amounts in the surface boundary layer. Detailed calculations find that STT, while highly variable, is responsible for an average, over the seven campaigns, of 3.1% of boundary layer ozone (1.2 ppb), but 13% (5.4 ppb) in the lower troposphere and 34% (22 ppb) in the middle and upper troposphere, where these layers are defined as 0–1 km, 1–3 km, and 3–8 km respectively. Estimates based on counting laminae in ozonesonde profiles, with judicious choices of ozone and relative humidity thresholds, compare moderately well, on average, with these values. The lamina detection algorithm is then applied to a large dataset from four summer ozonesonde campaigns at 18 North American sites between 2006 and 2011. The results show some site-to-site and year-to-year variability, but stratospheric ozone contributions average 4.6% (boundary layer), 15% (lower troposphere) and 26% (middle/upper troposphere). Calculations were also performed based on the TOST global 3D trajectory-mapped ozone data product. Maps of STT in the same three layers of the troposphere suggest that the STT ozone flux is greater over the North American continent than Europe, and much greater in winter and spring than in summer or fall. When averaged over all seasons, magnitudes over North America show similar ratios between levels to the previous calculations, but are overall 3–4 times smaller. This may be because of limitations (trajectory length and vertical resolution) to the current TOST-based calculation.

PDF of Publication: 
Download from publisher's website.
Research Program: 
Tropospheric Composition Program (TCP)