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Colloquium

Department of Atmospheric Science

Mon., Mar. 26, 3:10 pm, EN6085

Airborne greenhouse and trace gas measurements and modeling: evaluating regional emissions for carbon and air quality management

Dr. Bianca Baier

NOAA

Abstract

My research goals to date have included the deployment of both ground-based and airborne atmospheric greenhouse and other trace gas measurement systems, and the use of these observations to evaluate and improve model predictions of air quality and climate. Early work includes the development, characterization, and deployment of a ground-based in situ ozone production rate sensor, the use of this sensor to evaluate simple chemical models, and its potential for inclusion in air quality monitoring networks. Current work involves airborne flask sampling of greenhouse and trace gases as part of the ACT-America campaign, and the use of flask tracer species alongside Lagrangian modeling techniques to characterize regional carbon flux estimates.

Future research goals have a continued aim towards better predicting air quality and climate through regional-scale observations and modeling. As an example, a critical aspect of understanding the global carbon cycle involves the capability to quantify carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) and methane (CH 4 ) sources and sinks at regional to continental scales using atmospheric data. Atmospheric inversion modeling couples observations of greenhouse gases with transport models to optimize carbon fluxes, but contains large uncertainties at regional scales, where management and mitigation practices are put in place. Airborne greenhouse and trace gas measurements can help to estimate both anthropogenic and biogenic carbon fluxes at these relevant spatial scales using refined, top-down flux estimation techniques and high-accuracy, high-precision instrumentation. With the available facilities and measurement platforms at the University of Wyoming, airborne greenhouse and trace gas observations can be used to evaluate model transport and fluxes in an effort to better constrain regional-scale carbon emissions. Further, with uncertainties in how urban- or ecosystem-level carbon sources and sinks will change in the future or with our changing climate, these airborne observations can be a critical asset to the scientific community for emissions quantification, evaluation of satellite retrievals, and assimilation in global models.


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