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1.
Nature ; 597(7876): 366-369, 2021 09.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34526704

RESUMEN

Southeast Australia experienced intensive and geographically extensive wildfires during the 2019-2020 summer season1,2. The fires released substantial amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere3. However, existing emission estimates based on fire inventories are uncertain4, and vary by up to a factor of four for this event. Here we constrain emission estimates with the help of satellite observations of carbon monoxide5, an analytical Bayesian inversion6 and observed ratios between emitted carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide7. We estimate emissions of carbon dioxide to be 715 teragrams (range 517-867) from November 2019 to January 2020. This is more than twice the estimate derived by five different fire inventories8-12, and broadly consistent with estimates based on a bottom-up bootstrap analysis of this fire episode13. Although fires occur regularly in the savannas in northern Australia, the recent episodes were extremely large in scale and intensity, burning unusually large areas of eucalyptus forest in the southeast13. The fires were driven partly by climate change14,15, making better-constrained emission estimates particularly important. This is because the build-up of atmospheric carbon dioxide may become increasingly dependent on fire-driven climate-carbon feedbacks, as highlighted by this event16.


Asunto(s)
Dióxido de Carbono/análisis , Imágenes Satelitales , Incendios Forestales/estadística & datos numéricos , Atmósfera/química , Australia , Teorema de Bayes , Monóxido de Carbono/análisis , Cambio Climático , Eucalyptus , Bosques , Pradera , Incertidumbre
2.
Sci Rep ; 10(1): 1379, 2020 Jan 28.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31992727

RESUMEN

Production of oil and natural gas in North America is at an all-time high due to the development and use of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing. Methane emissions associated with this industrial activity are a concern because of the contribution to climate radiative forcing. We present new measurements from the space-based TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI) launched in 2017 that show methane enhancements over production regions in the United States. In the Uintah Basin in Utah, TROPOMI methane columns correlated with in-situ measurements, and the highest columns were observed over the deepest parts of the basin, consistent with the accumulation of emissions underneath inversions. In the Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico, methane columns showed maxima over regions with the highest natural gas production and were correlated with nitrogen-dioxide columns at a ratio that is consistent with results from in-situ airborne measurements. The improved detail provided by TROPOMI will likely enable the timely monitoring from space of methane emissions associated with oil and natural gas production.

3.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31843920

RESUMEN

Methane emissions due to accidents in the oil and natural gas sector are very challenging to monitor, and hence are seldom considered in emission inventories and reporting. One of the main reasons is the lack of measurements during such events. Here we report the detection of large methane emissions from a gas well blowout in Ohio during February to March 2018 in the total column methane measurements from the spaceborne Tropospheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI). From these data, we derive a methane emission rate of 120 ± 32 metric tons per hour. This hourly emission rate is twice that of the widely reported Aliso Canyon event in California in 2015. Assuming the detected emission represents the average rate for the 20-d blowout period, we find the total methane emission from the well blowout is comparable to one-quarter of the entire state of Ohio's reported annual oil and natural gas methane emission, or, alternatively, a substantial fraction of the annual anthropogenic methane emissions from several European countries. Our work demonstrates the strength and effectiveness of routine satellite measurements in detecting and quantifying greenhouse gas emission from unpredictable events. In this specific case, the magnitude of a relatively unknown yet extremely large accidental leakage was revealed using measurements of TROPOMI in its routine global survey, providing quantitative assessment of associated methane emissions.

4.
Geophys Res Lett ; 45(19): 10456-10463, 2018 Oct 16.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33104094

RESUMEN

In recent years, solar-induced chlorophyll fluorescence (SIF) retrieved from space borne spectrometers has been extensively used as a proxy for terrestrial photosynthesis at relatively sparse temporal and spatial scales. The near-infrared band of the recently launched TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI) features the required spectral resolution and signal-to-noise ratio to retrieve SIF in a spectral range devoid of atmospheric absorption features. We find that initial TROPOMI spectra meet high expectations for a substantially improved spatio-temporal resolution (up to 7 km × 3.5 km pixels with daily revisit), representing a step change in SIF remote sensing capabilities. However, interpretation requires caution, as the broad range of viewing-illumination geometries covered by TROPOMI's 2600 km wide swath needs to be taken into account. A first inter-sensor comparison with OCO-2 (Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2) SIF shows excellent agreement, underscoring the high quality of TROPOMI's SIF retrievals and the notable radiometric performance of the instrument. Plain Language Summary: Photosynthesis is the most essential process for life on Earth, but gradually changing environmental conditions such as increasing concentrations of atmospheric trace gases, rising temperatures or reduced water availability could adversely affect the photosynthetic productivity. The recently launched TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI) is designed to monitor atmospheric trace gases and air pollutants with an unprecedented resolution in space and time, while its radiometric performance also permits us to see a weak electromagnetic signal emitted by photosynthetically active vegetation - solar induced chlorophyll fluorescence (SIF). Mounting evidence suggests that SIF observations from satellite instruments augment our abilities to track the photosynthetic performance and carbon uptake of terrestrial vegetation. In this study, we present the first TROPOMI SIF retrievals, largely outperforming previous and existing capabilities for a spatial continuous monitoring of SIF from space.

5.
Appl Opt ; 49(17): 3282-90, 2010 Jun 10.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-20539345

RESUMEN

We propose a method for identifying clear-sky scenarios from a measurement time series over satellite-observed ground pixels of unknown surface albedo and aerosol type. The lack of a general monotonic relationship between aerosol loading and observed reflectance encumbers the ordering of the observation time series according to aerosol loading. This problem is ameliorated by using two wavelengths at which the surface albedos are known to differ. Treating an observation as being cloud/aerosol free allows for the determination of the corresponding Lambertian equivalent albedo, the relative contrast of which at the two wavelengths varies monotonically with respect to aerosol-loading, clear-sky and completely clouded scenarios representing the extreme cases. Applying this method to the Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Chartography measurements over a nondark surface, we validate it by comparing measured against modeled O(2) A- and B-band absorption at the retrieved albedo in an aerosol-free atmosphere.

6.
Appl Opt ; 46(16): 3332-44, 2007 Jun 01.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-17514291

RESUMEN

We investigate the capabilities of different instrument concepts for the retrieval of aerosol properties over land. It was found that, if the surface reflection properties are unknown, only multiple-viewing-angle measurements of both intensity and polarization are able to provide the relevant aerosol parameters with sufficient accuracy for climate research. Furthermore, retrieval errors are only little affected when the number of viewing angles is increased at the cost of the number of spectral sampling points and vice versa. This indicates that there is a certain amount of freedom for the instrument design of dedicated aerosol instruments. The final choice on the trade-off between the spectral sampling and the number of viewing angles should be made taking other factors into account, such as instrument complexity and the ability to obtain global coverage.

7.
Appl Opt ; 46(2): 243-52, 2007 Jan 10.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-17268571

RESUMEN

We present what we believe to be a novel approach to simulating the spectral fine structure (<1 nm) in measurements of spectrometers such as the Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment (GOME). GOME measures the Earth's radiance spectra and daily solar irradiance spectra from which a reflectivity spectrum is commonly extracted. The high-frequency structures contained in such a spectrum are, apart from atmospheric absorption, caused by Raman scattering and by a shift between the solar irradiance and the Earth's radiance spectrum. Normally, an a priori high-resolution solar spectrum is used to simulate these structures. We present an alternative method in which all the required information on the solar spectrum is retrieved from the GOME measurements. We investigate two approaches for the spectral range of 390-400 nm. First, a solar spectrum is reconstructed on a fine spectral grid from the GOME solar measurement. This approach leads to undersampling errors of up to 0.5% in the modeling of the Earth's radiance spectra. Second, a combination of the solar measurement and one of the Earth's radiance measurement is used to retrieve a solar spectrum. This approach effectively removes the undersampling error and results in residuals close to the GOME measurement noise of 0.1%.

8.
Appl Opt ; 45(23): 5993-6006, 2006 Aug 10.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-16926888

RESUMEN

Accurate radiative transfer calculations in cloudy atmospheres are generally time consuming, limiting their practical use in satellite remote sensing applications. We present a model to efficiently calculate the radiative transfer of polarized light in atmospheres that contain homogeneous cloud layers. This model combines the Gauss-Seidel method, which is efficient for inhomogeneous cloudless atmospheres, with the doubling method, which is efficient for homogeneous cloud layers. Additionally to reduce the computational effort for radiative transfer calculations in absorption bands, the cloud reflection and transmission matrices are interpolated over the absorption and scattering optical thicknesses within the cloud layer. We demonstrate that the proposed radiative transfer model in combination with this interpolation technique is efficient for the simulation of satellite measurements for inhomogeneous atmospheres containing one homogeneous cloud layer. For example, the Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Cartography (SCIAMACHY) measurements in the oxygen A band (758-773 nm) and the Hartley-Huggins ozone band (295-335 nm) with a spectral resolution of 0.4 nm can be simulated for these atmospheres within 1 min on a 2.8 GHz PC with an accuracy better than 0.1%.

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