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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-510
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-510
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 15 Jul 2019

Submitted as: research article | 15 Jul 2019

Review status
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.

Biomass-burning and urban emission impacts in the Andes Cordillera region based on in-situ measurements from the Chacaltaya observatory, Bolivia (5240 m a.s.l.)

Chauvigné Aurélien1, Diego Aliaga2, Marcos Andrade2, Patrick Ginot3, Radovan Krejci4, Griša Močnik5, Nadège Montoux1, Isabel Moreno2, Thomas Müller6, Marco Pandolfi7, Karine Sellegri1, Fernando Velarde2, Alfred Wiedensohler6, Kay Weinhold6, and Paolo Laj3,8,9 Chauvigné Aurélien et al.
  • 1Laboratoire de Météorologie Physique, OPGC, CNRS UMR6016, Université d'Auvergne, Clermont-Ferrand, France
  • 2Laboratorio de Física de la Atmósfera, Universidad Mayor de San Andrés, La Paz, Bolivia
  • 3Univ-Grenoble-Alpes, CNRS, IRD, Grenoble-INP, IGE, 38000 Grenoble, France
  • 4Department of Environmental Science and Analytical Chemistry & Bolin Centre of Climate Research, Stockholm University, Stockholm 10691, Sweden
  • 5Condensed Matter Physics Department, Jožef Stefan Institute, Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • 6Leibniz Institute for Tropospheric Research, Permoserstr. 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany
  • 7Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research, c/Jordi-Girona 18–26, 08034, Barcelona, Spain
  • 8CNR-ISAC, National Research Council of Italy – Institute of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, Bologna, Italy
  • 9University of Helsinki, Atmospheric Science division, Helsinki, Finland

Abstract. We present the variability of aerosol particle optical properties measured at the global Atmosphere Watch (GAW) station Chacaltaya (5240 m a.s.l.). The in-situ mountain site is ideally located to study regional impacts of the densely populated urban area of La Paz/El Alto, and the intensive activity in the Amazonian basin. Four year measurements allow to study aerosol particle properties for distinct atmospheric conditions as stable and turbulent layers, different airmass origins, as well as for wet and dry seasons, including biomass-burning influenced periods. The absorption, scattering and extinction coefficients (median annual values of 0.74, 12.14 and 12.96 Mm−1 respectively) show a clear seasonal variation with low values during the wet season (0.57, 7.94 and 8.68 Mm−1 respectively) and higher values during the dry season (0.80, 11.23 and 14.51 Mm−1 respectively). These parameters also show a pronounced diurnal variation (maximum during daytime, minimum during night-time, as a result of the dynamic and convective effects of leading to lower atmospheric layers reaching the site during daytime. Retrieved intensive optical properties are significantly different from one season to the other, showing the influence of different sources of aerosols according to the season. Both intensive and extensive optical properties of aerosols were found to be different among the different atmospheric layers. The particle light absorption, scattering and extinction coefficients are in average 1.94, 1.49 and 1.55 times higher, respectively, in the turbulent layer compared to the stable layer. We observe that the difference is highest during the wet season and lowest during the dry season. Using wavelength dependence of aerosol particle optical properties, we discriminated contributions from natural (mainly mineral dust) and anthropogenic (mainly biomass-burning and urban transport or industries) emissions according to seasons and tropospheric layers. The main sources influencing measurements at CHC are arising from the urban area of La Paz/El Alto, and regional biomass-burning from the Amazonian basin. Results show a 28 % to 80 % increase of the extinction coefficients during the biomass-burning season with respect to the dry season, which is observed in both tropospheric layers. From this analyse, long-term observations at CHC provides the first direct evidence of the impact of emissions in the Amazonian basin on atmospheric optical properties far away from their sources, all the way to the stable layer.

Chauvigné Aurélien et al.
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Chauvigné Aurélien et al.
Chauvigné Aurélien et al.
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Short summary
The study presents for the first time the analyse of aerosol optical properties in the unique high altitude station of Chacaltaya, Bolivia. Ideally located, the station allows to better understand influences of urban area and the Amazonian forest on the tropospheric properties. An emerging method is applied to characterize aerosol origins, and permits to illustrate evidences of natural and anthropogenic influences.
The study presents for the first time the analyse of aerosol optical properties in the unique...
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