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An approach to estimate global biomass burning emissions of organic and black...

Vermote, E. F., E. Ellicott, O. Dubovik, T. Lapyonok, M. Chin, L. Giglio, and G. J. Roberts (2009), An approach to estimate global biomass burning emissions of organic and black carbon from MODIS fire radiative power, J. Geophys. Res., 114, D18205, doi:10.1029/2008JD011188.

Biomass burning is the main global source of fine primary carbonaceous aerosols in the form of organic carbon (OC) and black carbon (BC). We present an approach to estimate biomass burning aerosol emissions based on the measurement of radiative energy released during combustion. We make use of both Aqua and Terra MODIS observations to estimate the fire radiative energy using a simple model to parameterize the fire diurnal cycle based on the long-term ratio between Terra and Aqua MODIS FRP. The parameterization is developed using cases of frequent (up to 12 times daily) MODIS observations, geostationary data from SEVIRI, and precessing observations from TRMM VIRS. FRE-based emission coefficients for the organic and black carbon (OCBC) component of fine mode aerosols are computed from multiple regions encompassing grassland/savanna, tropical forest, and extratropical forest biomes using OCBC emission estimates derived from the MODIS fine mode aerosol product and an inverse aerosol transport model. The values of emission coefficients for OCBC retrieved were 2.7 ± 0.3 g/MJ for grassland/savanna, 8.6 ± 0.8 g/MJ for tropical forest, and 14.4 ± 0.8 g/MJ for extratropical forest. The FRE monthly data are then used to estimate OCBC emissions from biomass burning on a global basis. For 2001 to 2007, our annual estimates are comparable to previously published values. According to our estimate, the OCBC emissions are the largest for 2003 (18.8 Tg), roughly 20% above average and primarily driven by wildland fires in the Lake Baikal region (Russia).

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