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Discussion papers | Copyright
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2018-466
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 27 Jun 2018

Research article | 27 Jun 2018

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This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of this manuscript was accepted for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP) and is expected to appear here in due course.

Transport, mixing, and feedback of dust, biomass burning and anthropogenic pollutants in eastern Asia: A case study

Derong Zhou1, Ke Ding1, Xin Huang1,2, Lixia Liu1,a, Qiang Liu1, Zhengning Xu1, Fei Jiang3, Congbin Fu1,2, and Aijun Ding1,2 Derong Zhou et al.
  • 1Joint International Research Laboratory of Atmospheric and Earth System Sciences and School of Atmospheric Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210023, China
  • 2Collaborative Innovation Center of Climate Change, Jiangsu Province, China
  • 3Jiangsu Provincial Key Laboratory of Geographic Information Science and Technology, International Institute for Earth System Science, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210023, China
  • anow at: Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Mainz, Germany

Abstract. Anthropogenic fossil fuel (FF) combustion, biomass burning (BB) and desert dust are main sources of air pollutants around the globe. The emission of the three sources in Asia are all very intensive and their influences on air quality is very important, especially in spring. In this study, we investigate the vertical distribution, transport characteristics, source contribution, and meteorological feedback of the dust, BB and FF aerosols in a unique pollution episode occurred in eastern Asia based on various measurement data and modelling methods. Ground-based observations indicated a persistent pollution episode dramatically changing from secondary fine particulate pollution to dust pollution in late March 2015 over the Yangtze River Delta (YRD) region, eastern China. The online-coupled meteorology–chemistry–aerosol modelling together with Lagrangian particle dispersion simulations were conducted to investigate the vertical structure, transport characteristics and mechanisms of the multi-scale, multi-source, and multi-day air pollution episode. The regional polluted continental aerosols mainly accumulated near surface by local anthropogenic emissions mixed with dust aerosols, downwash from the upper planetary boundary layer (PBL) and middle/lower troposphere (MLT), and further transported downwardly by large-scale cold fronts and warm conveyor belts. BB smoke from the Southeast Asia, mainly from forest burning in Indochina, were transported by westerlies around the altitude of 3km from southern China to eastern China, further mixed with dust and FF aerosols in eastern China and experienced long-range transport over the subtropical Pacific Ocean. The three pollutant sources could all transport to eastern China, especially the YRD region around the latitude of 30°N, caused a structure of multi-layer pollutants and well mixed pollutants there. These solar absorption aerosols from FF, BB and dust could also cause significant feedback with MLT meteorology and then enhance local anthropogenic pollution. This study highlights the importance of intensive vertical measurement in the eastern China and the downwind Pacific Ocean with a focus of understanding the complex physical and chemical processes of various pollution sources, and also raises the needs of quantitative understanding of environmental and climate impacts of these pollution sources in regional even global scales.

Derong Zhou et al.
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Derong Zhou et al.
Derong Zhou et al.
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Short summary
We investigate the vertical distribution, transport characteristics, source contribution, and meteorological feedback of the dust, biomass burning and fossil fuel combustion aerosols for a unique pollution episode occurred in late March 2015 in eastern Asia, based on various measurement data and modelling methods. We found that cold front played an important role in the long-range transport of different pollutants and caused a three layer vertical structure of pollutants over eastern China.
We investigate the vertical distribution, transport characteristics, source contribution, and...
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