Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 11, 5351-5378, 2011
www.atmos-chem-phys-discuss.net/11/5351/2011/
doi:10.5194/acpd-11-5351-2011
© Author(s) 2011. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
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This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP). Please refer to the corresponding final paper in ACP.
Characterization of wildfire NOx emissions using MODIS fire radiative power and OMI tropospheric NO2 columns
A. K. Mebust1, A. R. Russell1, R. C. Hudman1, L. C. Valin1, and R. C. Cohen1,2
1Dept. of Chemistry, University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, California, USA
2Dept. of Earth and Planetary Science, University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, California, USA

Abstract. We use observations of fire radiative power (FRP) from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and tropospheric NO2 column measurements from the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) to derive NO2 wildfire emission coefficients (g MJ−1) for three land types over California and Nevada. Retrieved emission coefficients were 0.279 ± 0.077, 0.342 ± 0.053, and 0.696 ± 0.088 g MJ−1 NO2 for forest, grass and shrub fuels, respectively. These emission coefficients reproduce ratios of emissions with fuel type reported previously using independent methods. However, the magnitude of these coefficients is lower than prior estimates, which suggests either a negative bias in the OMI NO2 retrieval over regions of active emissions, or that the average fire observed in our study has a smaller ratio of flaming to smoldering combustion than measurements used in prior estimates of emissions. Our results indicate that satellite data can provide an extensive characterization of the variability in fire NOx emissions; 67% of the variability in emissions in this region can be accounted for using an FRP-based parameterization.

Citation: Mebust, A. K., Russell, A. R., Hudman, R. C., Valin, L. C., and Cohen, R. C.: Characterization of wildfire NOx emissions using MODIS fire radiative power and OMI tropospheric NO2 columns, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 11, 5351-5378, doi:10.5194/acpd-11-5351-2011, 2011.
 
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