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Overview: oxidant and particle photochemical processes above a south-east Asian tropical rainforest (the OP3 project): introduction, rationale, location characteristics and tools

Hewitt C, Lee J, MacKenzie A, Barkley M, Carslaw N, Carver G, Chappell N, Coe H, Collier C, Commane R, Davies F, Davison B, Di Carlo P, Di Marco C, Dorsey J, Edwards P, Evans M, Fowler D, Furneaux K, Gallagher M, Guenther A, Heard D, Helfter C, Hopkins J, Ingham T, Irwin M, Jones C, Karunaharan A, Langford B, Lewis A, Lim S, MacDonald S, Mahajan A, Malpass S, McFiggans G, Mills G, Misztal P, Moller S, Monks P, Nemitz E, Nicolas-Perea V, Oetjen H, Oram D, Palmer P, Phillips G, Pike R, Plane J, Pugh T, Pyle J, Reeves C, Robinson N, Stewart D, Stone D, Whalley L, Yin X ...see all

Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, vol. 10, issue 1 (2010) pp. 169-199

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Abstract

In April-July 2008, intensive measurements were made of atmospheric
composition and chemistry in Sabah, Malaysia, as part of the ``Oxidant
and particle photochemical processes above a South-East Asian tropical
rainforest{''} (OP3) project. Fluxes and concentrations of trace gases
and particles were made from and above the rainforest canopy at the
Bukit Atur Global Atmosphere Watch station and at the nearby Sabahmas
oil palm plantation, using both ground-based and airborne measurements.
Here, the measurement and modelling strategies used, the characteristics
of the sites and an overview of data obtained are described. Composition
measurements show that the rainforest site was not significantly
impacted by anthropogenic pollution, and this is confirmed by satellite
retrievals of NO2 and HCHO. The dominant modulators of atmospheric
chemistry at the rainforest site were therefore emissions of BVOCs and
soil emissions of reactive nitrogen oxides. At the observed BVOC:NOx
volume mixing ratio (similar to 100 pptv/pptv), current chemical models
suggest that daytime maximum OH concentrations should be ca. 10(5)
radicals cm(-3), but observed OH concentrations were an order of
magnitude greater than this. We confirm, therefore, previous
measurements that suggest that an unexplained source of OH must exist
above tropical rainforest and we continue to interrogate the data to
find explanations for this.

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Authors

  • C N Hewitt

  • J D Lee

  • A R MacKenzie

  • M P Barkley

  • N Carslaw

  • G D Carver

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