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© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 02 Jan 2020

Submitted as: research article | 02 Jan 2020

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A revised version of this preprint was accepted for the journal ACP.

Validation of Aura-OMI QA4ECV NO2 Climate Data Records with ground-based DOAS networks: role of measurement and comparison uncertainties

Steven Compernolle1, Tijl Verhoelst1, Gaia Pinardi1, José Granville1, Daan Hubert1, Arno Keppens1, Sander Niemeijer2, Bruno Rino2, Alkis Bais3, Steffen Beirle4, Folkert Boersma5,8, John P. Burrows6, Isabelle De Smedt1, Henk Eskes5, Florence Goutail7, François Hendrick1, Alba Lorente8, Andrea Pazmino7, Ankie Piters5, Enno Peters6, Jean-Pierre Pommereau7, Julia Remmers4, Andreas Richter6, Jos van Geffen5, Michel Van Roozendael1, Thomas Wagner4, and Jean-Christopher Lambert1 Steven Compernolle et al.
  • 1Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BIRA-IASB), Uccle, Belgium
  • 2s[&]t Corporation, Delft, The Netherlands
  • 3Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Laboratory of Atmospheric Physics (AUTH), Thessaloniki, Greece
  • 4Max Planck Institute for Chemistry (MPIC), Mainz, Germany
  • 5Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI), De Bilt, The Netherlands
  • 6Institute of Environmental Physics, University of Bremen (IUP-B), Bremen, Germany
  • 7Laboratoire Atmosphères, Milieux, Observations Spatiales, CNRS, Guyancourt, France
  • 8Wageningen University, Meteorology and Air Quality Group, Wageningen, the Netherlands

Abstract. The QA4ECV version 1.1 stratospheric and tropospheric NO2 vertical column density (VCD) climate data records (CDR) from the satellite sensor OMI are validated, using NDACC zenith scattered light DOAS (ZSL-DOAS) and Multi Axis-DOAS (MAX-DOAS) data as a reference. The QA4ECV OMI stratospheric VCD have a small bias of ~ 0.2 Pmolec cm-2 (5–10 %) and a dispersion of 0.2 to 1 Pmolec cm-2 with respect to the ZSL-DOAS measurements. QA4ECV tropospheric VCD observations from OMI are restricted to near-cloud-free scenes, leading to a negative sampling bias (with respect to the unrestricted scene ensemble) of a few Pmolec cm-2 up to −10 Pmolec cm-2 (−40 %) in one extreme high-pollution case. QA4ECV OMI tropospheric VCD has a negative bias with respect to the MAX-DOAS data (−1 to −4 Pmolec cm-2), a feature also found for the OMI OMNO2 standard data product. The tropospheric VCD discrepancies between satellite and ground-based data exceed by far the combined measurement uncertainties. Depending on the site, part of the discrepancy can be attributed to a combination of comparison errors (notably horizontal smoothing difference error), measurement/retrieval errors related to clouds and aerosols, and to the difference in vertical smoothing and a priori profile assumptions.

Steven Compernolle et al.

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Steven Compernolle et al.

Steven Compernolle et al.


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Latest update: 27 May 2020
Publications Copernicus
Short summary
Tropospheric and stratospheric NO2 columns from the satellite product OMI QA4ECV NO2 are validated, by comparing with ground-based measurements at 11 sites. OMI stratospheric column has a small negative bias and OMI tropospheric a stronger negative bias relative to the ground-based data. Discrepancies are attributed to (i) comparison errors like the difference in horizontal smoothing and (ii) to measurement errors related to clouds, aerosols, vertical smoothing and a priori profile assumptions.
Tropospheric and stratospheric NO2 columns from the satellite product OMI QA4ECV NO2 are...