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

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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