Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 8, 1261-1289, 2008
www.atmos-chem-phys-discuss.net/8/1261/2008/
doi:10.5194/acpd-8-1261-2008
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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.
Technical Note: Impact of nonlinearity on changing the a priori of trace gas profiles estimates from the Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer (TES)
S. S. Kulawik1, K. W. Bowman1, M. Luo1, C. D. Rodgers2, and L. Jourdain1
1Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA
2University Oxford, Clarendon Lab, Oxford OX1 3PU, UK

Abstract. Non-linear optimal estimates of atmospheric profiles from the Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer (TES) may contain a priori information that varies geographically, which is a confounding factor in the analysis and physical interpretation of an ensemble of profiles. A common strategy is to transform these profile estimates to a common prior using a linear operation thereby facilitating the interpretation of profile variability. However, this operation is dependent on the assumption of not worse than moderate non-linearity near the solution of the non-linear estimate. We examines the robustness of this assumption when exchanging the prior by comparing atmospheric retrievals from the Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer processed with a uniform prior with those processed with a variable prior and converted to a uniform prior following the non-linear retrieval. We find that linearly converting the prior following a non-linear retrieval is shown to have a minor effect on the results as compared to a non-linear retrieval using a uniform prior when compared to the expected total error, with less than 10% of the change in the prior ending up as unbiased fluctuations in the profile estimate results.

Citation: Kulawik, S. S., Bowman, K. W., Luo, M., Rodgers, C. D., and Jourdain, L.: Technical Note: Impact of nonlinearity on changing the a priori of trace gas profiles estimates from the Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer (TES), Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 8, 1261-1289, doi:10.5194/acpd-8-1261-2008, 2008.
 
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