The Influence of Aerosol Composition on Photolysis Rates Based on Airborne Observations
Tuesday, 15 December 2015
Poster Hall (Moscone South)
The potential variability in modeled photolysis rates introduced by aerosol optical properties measured at visible wavelengths is presented here. Aerosol scattering and absorption were measured aboard the NASA P-3B aircraft during the Deriving Information on Surface conditions from Column and Vertically Resolved Observations Relevant to Air Quality (DISCOVER-AQ) using a TSI Nephelometer and a Radiance Research Particle Soot Absorption Photometer (PSAP), respectively. To isolate the effect of aerosols on photolysis rates, cloud-free case studies were identified using aircraft videos for the four DISCOVER-AQ deployments: Baltimore, MD-Washington, D.C. in July 2011, the California Central Valley in January/February 2013, Houston, TX in September 2013, and Denver, CO in July 2014. For these case studies, absorption measurements at 470 and 532 nm were extrapolated to the Nephelometer wavelengths (450 and 550nm) using the 470-532nm absorption Angstrom exponent (AAE470-532) to calculate aerosol extinction and SSAs at these wavelengths. Photolysis rates were modeled using the Tropospheric Ultraviolet model version 5.2 (TUV 5.2) for three scenarios: 1) an aerosol-free case, 2) using a spectrally-flat SSA at 550nm and 3) using a spectrally-dependent SSA derived from scattering and absorption measurements. Modeled photolysis rates were compared to those measured aboard the P-3B during DISCOVER-AQ. The relationship between airborne measurements of water soluble organic carbon (WSOC) made by a Particle-Into-Liquid-Sampler (PILS), AAE470-532 and model/measurement discrepancies were explored to assess the influence of aerosol composition on photolysis rates. Additional comparisons between photolysis rates modeled with vertically-resolved aerosol optical properties and those modeled using column-average values were performed to assess the influence of aerosol vertical distribution on photolysis rates.