Validation of Ozone Monitoring Instrument nitrogen dioxide columns

E.A. Celarier, E.J. Brinksma, J.F. Gleason, J.P. Veefkind, A. Cede, J.R. Herman, D.V. Ionov, F. Goutail, J.-P. Pommereau, J.-C. Lambert, M. Roozendael, Van, G. Pinardi, F. Wittrock, A. Schönhardt, A. Richter, O.W. Ibrahim, T. Wagner, B. Bojkov, G. Mount, E. SpineiC. M. Chen, T. J. Pongetti, S. P. Sander, E.J. Bucsela, M.O. Wenig, D.P.J. Swart, H. Volten, M. Kroon, P.F. Levelt

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We review the standard nitrogen dioxide (NO2) data product (Version 1.0.), which is based on measurements made in the spectral region 415–465 nm by the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) on the NASA Earth Observing System-Aura satellite. A number of ground- and aircraft-based measurements have been used to validate the data product's three principal quantities: stratospheric, tropospheric, and total NO2 column densities under nearly or completely cloud-free conditions. The validation of OMI NO2 is complicated by a number of factors, the greatest of which is that the OMI observations effectively average the NO2 over its field of view (minimum 340 km2), while a ground-based instrument samples at a single point. The tropospheric NO2 field is often very inhomogeneous, varying significantly over tens to hundreds of meters, and ranges from 1016 cm-2 over urban and industrial areas. Because of OMI's areal averaging, when validation measurements are made near NO2 sources the OMI measurements are expected to underestimate the ground-based, and this is indeed seen. Further, we use several different instruments, both new and mature, which might give inconsistent NO2 amounts; the correlations between nearby instruments is 0.8–0.9. Finally, many of the validation data sets are quite small and span a very short length of time; this limits the statistical conclusions that can be drawn from them. Despite these factors, good agreement is generally seen between the OMI and ground-based measurements, with OMI stratospheric NO2 underestimated by about 14% and total and tropospheric columns underestimated by 15–30%. Typical correlations between OMI NO2 and ground-based measurements are generally >0.6.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberD15S15
Pages (from-to)D15S15-1/23
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research. D, Atmospheres
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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