Validation of Aura Microwave Limb Sounder OH measurements with Fourier...

Wang, S., H. M. Pickett, T. J. Pongetti, R. Cheung, Y. L. Yung, C. Shim, Q. Li, T. Canty, R. Salawitch, K. Jucks, B. Drouin, and S. P. Sander (2008), Validation of Aura Microwave Limb Sounder OH measurements with Fourier Transform Ultra-Violet Spectrometer total OH column measurements at Table Mountain, California, J. Geophys. Res., 113, D22301, doi:10.1029/2008JD009883.

The first seasonal and interannual validation of OH measurements from the Aura Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) has been conducted using ground-based OH column measurements from the Fourier Transform Ultra-Violet Spectrometer (FTUVS) over the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Table Mountain Facility (TMF) during 2004–2007. To compare with FTUVS total column measurements, MLS OH vertical profiles over TMF are integrated to obtain partial OH columns above 21.5 hPa, which covers nearly 90% of the total column. The tropospheric OH and the lower stratopheric OH not measured by MLS are estimated using GEOS (Goddard Earth Observing System)-Chem and a Harvard 2-D model implemented within GEOS-Chem, respectively. A number of field observations and calculations from a photochemical box model are compared to OH profiles from these models to estimate the variability in the lower atmospheric OH and thus the uncertainty in the combined total OH columns from MLS and models. In general, the combined total OH columns agree extremely well with TMF total OH columns, especially during seasons with high OH. In winter with low OH, the combined columns are often higher than TMF measurements. A slightly weaker seasonal variation is observed by MLS relative to TMF. OH columns from TMF and the combined total columns from MLS and models are highly correlated, resulting in a mean slope of 0.969 with a statistically insignificant intercept. This study therefore suggests that column abundances derived from MLS vertical profiles have been validated to within the mutual systematic uncertainties of the MLS and FTUVS measurements.

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Upper Atmosphere Research Program (UARP)