Evaluation of Present-day Aerosols over China Simulated from the Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate Model Intercomparison Project (ACCMIP)

Tuesday, 16 December 2014: 11:50 AM
Hong Liao and Wenyuan Chang, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Beijing, China
High concentrations of aerosols over China lead to strong radiative forcing that is important for both regional and global climate. To understand the representation of aerosols in China in current global climate models, we evaluate extensively the simulated present-day aerosol concentrations and aerosol optical depth (AOD) over China from the 12 models that participated in Atmospheric Chemistry & Climate Model Intercomparison Project (ACCMIP), by using ground-based measurements and satellite remote sensing. Ground-based measurements of aerosol concentrations used in this work include those from the China Meteorological Administration (CMA) Atmosphere Watch Network (CAWNET) and the observed fine-mode aerosol concentrations collected from the literature. The ground-based measurements of AOD in China are taken from the AErosol RObotic NETwork (AERONET), the sites with CIMEL sun photometer operated by Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and from Chinese Sun Hazemeter Network (CSHNET). We find that the ACCMIP models generally underestimate concentrations of all major aerosol species in China. On an annual mean basis, the multi-model mean concentrations of sulfate, nitrate, ammonium, black carbon, and organic carbon are underestimated by 63%, 73%, 54%, 53%, and 59%, respectively. The multi-model mean AOD values show low biases of 20-40% at studied sites in China. The ACCMIP models can reproduce seasonal variation of nitrate but cannot capture well the seasonal variations of other aerosol species. Our analyses indicate that current global models generally underestimate the role of aerosols in China in climate simulations.