ACE-FTS measurements of trace species in the characterization of biomass burning plumes

by K. A. Tereszchuk, G. González Abad, C. Clerbaux, D. Hurtmans, P.-F. Coheur, P. F. Bernath
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics ()


To further our understanding of the effects of biomass burning emissions on atmospheric composition, we report measurements of trace species in biomass burning plumes made by the Atmospheric Chemistry Experiment Fourier Transform Spectrometer (ACE-FTS) instrument on the SCISAT-1 satellite. An extensive set of 15 molecules, C2H2, C2H6, CH3OH, CH4, CO, H2CO, HCN, HCOOH, HNO3, NO, NO2, N2O5, O3, OCS and SF6 are used in our analysis. Even though most biomass burning smoke is typically confined to the boundary layer, some of these emissions are injected directly into the free troposphere via fire-related convective processes and transported away from the emission source. Further knowledge of the aging of biomass burning emissions in the free troposphere is needed. Tracer-tracer correlations are made between known pyrogenic species in these plumes in an effort to characterize them and follow their chemical evolution. Criteria such as age and type of biomass material burned are considered.

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