Biomass burning emissions in north Australia during the early dry season: an overview of the 2014 SAFIRED campaign
Marc D. Mallet1, Maximilien J. Desservettaz2, Branka Miljevic1, Andelija Milic1, Zoran D. Ristovski1, Joel Alroe1, Luke T. Cravigan1, E. Rohan Jayaratne1, Clare Paton-Walsh2, David W. T. Griffith2, Stephen R. Wilson2, Graham Kettlewell2, Marcel V. van der Schoot3, Paul Selleck3, Fabienne Reisen3, Sarah J. Lawson3, Jason Ward3, James Harnwell3, Min Cheng3, Rob W. Gillett3, Suzie B. Molloy3, Dean Howard4, Peter F. Nelson4, Anthony L. Morrison4, Grant C. Edwards4, Alastair G. Williams5, Scott D. Chambers5, Sylvester Werczynski5, Leah R. Williams6, Holly L. Winton7,a, Brad Atkinson8, Xianyu Wang9, and Melita D. Keywood31Department of Chemistry, Physics and Mechanical Engineering, Queensland University of Technology, Queensland, Brisbane, 4000, Australia 2Centre for Atmospheric Chemistry, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, New South Wales, 2522, Australia 3CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere, Aspendale, Victoria, 3195, Australia 4Department of Environmental Sciences, Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, 2109, Australia 5Australian Nuclei Science and Technology Organisation, Sydney, New South Wales, 2232, Australia 6Aerodyne Research, Inc., Billerica, Massachusetts, 01821, USA 7Physics and Astronomy, Curtin University, Perth, Western Australia, 6102, Australia 8Bureau of Meteorology, Darwin, Northern Territory, 0810, Australia 9National Research Centre for Environmental Toxicology, Brisbane, Queensland, 4108, Australia anow at: British Antarctic Survey, National Environmental Research Council, Cambridge, CB30HT, UK
Received: 28 Sep 2016 – Accepted for review: 04 Nov 2016 – Discussion started: 10 Nov 2016
Abstract. The SAFIRED (Savannah Fires in the Early Dry Season) campaign took place from 29th of May, 2014 until the 30th June, 2014 at the Australian Tropical Atmospheric Research Station (ATARS) in the Northern Territory, Australia. The purpose of this campaign was to investigate emissions from fires in the early dry season in northern Australia. Measurements were made of biomass burning aerosols, volatile organic compounds, polycyclic aromatic carbons, greenhouse gases, radon, mercury cycle, and trace metals. Aspects of the biomass burning aerosol emissions investigated included; emission factors of various emitted species, physical and chemical aerosol properties, aerosol aging, micronutrient supply to the ocean, nucleation, and aerosol water uptake. Over the course of the month-long campaign, biomass burning signals were prevalent and emissions from several large single burning events were observed at ATARS.
Biomass burning emissions dominated the gas and aerosol concentrations in this region. Nine major biomass burning events were identified and associated with intense or close individual smoke plumes. Dry season fires are extremely frequent and widespread across the northern region of Australia, which suggests that the measured aerosol and gaseous emissions at ATARS are likely representative of signals across the entire region of north Australia. Air mass forward trajectories show that these biomass burning emissions are carried north west over the Timor Sea and could influence the atmosphere over Indonesia and the tropical atmosphere over the Indian Ocean.
The outcomes of this campaign will be numerous. This region is an environment with little human impact and provides a unique look into the characteristics of biomass burning aerosol without the influence of other significant emission sources. Relationships between the aerosol physical and chemical properties, gas concentrations and meteorological data for the entire month will provide fundamental knowledge required to understand the influence of early dry season burning in this tropical region on the atmosphere. In this paper we present characteristics of the biomass burning observed at the sampling site and provide an overview of the more specific outcomes of the SAFIRED campaign.
Mallet, M. D., Desservettaz, M. J., Miljevic, B., Milic, A., Ristovski, Z. D., Alroe, J., Cravigan, L. T., Jayaratne, E. R., Paton-Walsh, C., Griffith, D. W. T., Wilson, S. R., Kettlewell, G., van der Schoot, M. V., Selleck, P., Reisen, F., Lawson, S. J., Ward, J., Harnwell, J., Cheng, M., Gillett, R. W., Molloy, S. B., Howard, D., Nelson, P. F., Morrison, A. L., Edwards, G. C., Williams, A. G., Chambers, S. D., Werczynski, S., Williams, L. R., Winton, H. L., Atkinson, B., Wang, X., and Keywood, M. D.: Biomass burning emissions in north Australia during the early dry season: an overview of the 2014 SAFIRED campaign, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., doi:10.5194/acp-2016-866, in review, 2016.