Creating Aerosol Types from CHemistry (CATCH): A New Algorithm to Extend the...

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Dawson, K. W., N. Meskhidze, S. P. Burton, M. S. Johnson, M. S. Kacenelenbogen, C. Hostetler, and Y. Hu (2017), Creating Aerosol Types from CHemistry (CATCH): A New Algorithm to Extend the Link Between Remote Sensing and Models, J. Geophys. Res., 122, doi:10.1002/2017JD026913.

Current remote sensing methods can identify aerosol types within an atmospheric column, presenting an opportunity to incrementally bridge the gap between remote sensing and models. Here a new algorithm was designed for Creating Aerosol Types from CHemistry (CATCH). CATCH-derived aerosol types—dusty mix, maritime, urban, smoke, and fresh smoke—are based on first-generation airborne High Spectral Resolution Lidar (HSRL-1) retrievals during the Ship-Aircraft Bio-Optical Research (SABOR) campaign, July/August 2014. CATCH is designed to derive aerosol types from model output of chemical composition. CATCH-derived aerosol types are determined by multivariate clustering of model-calculated variables that have been trained using retrievals of aerosol types from HSRL-1. CATCH-derived aerosol types (with the exception of smoke) compare well with HSRL-1 retrievals during SABOR with an average difference in aerosol optical depth (AOD) <0.03. Data analysis shows that episodic free tropospheric transport of smoke is underpredicted by the Goddard Earth Observing System- with Chemistry (GEOS-Chem) model. Spatial distributions of CATCH-derived aerosol types for the North American model domain during July/August 2014 show that aerosol type-specific AOD values occurred over representative locations: urban over areas with large population, maritime over oceans, smoke, and fresh smoke over typical biomass burning regions. This study demonstrates that model-generated information on aerosol chemical composition can be translated into aerosol types analogous to those retrieved from remote sensing methods. In the future, spaceborne HSRL-1 and CATCH can be used to gain insight into chemical composition of aerosol types, reducing uncertainties in estimates of aerosol radiative forcing.

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