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MAX-DOAS measurements of HONO slant column densities during the MAD-CAT campaign: inter-comparison, sensitivity studies on spectral analysis settings, and error budget

MPS-Authors
http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons140374

Wang,  Y.
Satellite Remote Sensing, Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons100850

Beirle,  S.
Satellite Remote Sensing, Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons187728

Lampel,  J.
Satellite Remote Sensing, Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons101213

Remmers,  J.
Satellite Remote Sensing, Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons101349

Wagner,  T.
Satellite Remote Sensing, Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Wang, Y., Beirle, S., Hendrick, F., Hilboll, A., Jin, J., Kyuberis, A. A., et al. (2017). MAX-DOAS measurements of HONO slant column densities during the MAD-CAT campaign: inter-comparison, sensitivity studies on spectral analysis settings, and error budget. Atmospheric Measurement Techniques, 10, 3719-3742. doi:10.5194/amt-10-3719-2017.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002E-058F-1
Abstract
In order to promote the development of the passive DOAS technique the Multi Axis DOAS – Comparison cam- paign for Aerosols and Trace gases (MAD-CAT) was held at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz, Germany, from June to October 2013. Here, we systematically compare the differential slant column densities (dSCDs) of nitrous acid (HONO) derived from measurements of seven differ- ent instruments. We also compare the tropospheric difference of SCDs (delta SCD) of HONO, namely the difference of the SCDs for the non-zenith observations and the zenith ob- servation of the same elevation sequence. Different research groups analysed the spectra from their own instruments us- ing their individual fit software. All the fit errors of HONO dSCDs from the instruments with cooled large-size detectors are mostly in the range of 0.1 to 0.3 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 for an integration time of 1 min. The fit error for the mini MAX-DOAS is around 0.7 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 . Al- though the HONO delta SCDs are normally smaller than 6 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 , consistent time series of HONO delta SCDs are retrieved from the measurements of different instruments. Both fits with a sequential Fraunhofer reference spectrum (FRS) and a daily noon FRS lead to similar con- sistency. Apart from the mini-MAX-DOAS, the systematic absolute differences of HONO delta SCDs between the in- struments are smaller than 0.63 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 . The correlation coefficients are higher than 0.7 and the slopes of linear regressions deviate from unity by less than 16 % for the elevation angle of 1 ◦ . The correlations decrease with an increase in elevation angle. All the participants also analysed synthetic spectra using the same baseline DOAS settings to results from their re- spective fit programs. In general the errors are smaller than 0.3 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 , which is about half of the sys- tematic difference between the real measurements. The differences of HONO delta SCDs retrieved in the selected three spectral ranges 335–361, 335–373 and 335– 390 nm are considerable (up to 0.57 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 ) for both real measurements and synthetic spectra. We per- formed sensitivity studies to quantify the dominant system- atic error sources and to find a recommended DOAS set- ting in the three spectral ranges. The results show that wa- ter vapour absorption, temperature and wavelength depen- dence of O 4 absorption, temperature dependence of Ring spectrum, and polynomial and intensity offset correction all together dominate the systematic errors. We recom- mend a fit range of 335–373 nm for HONO retrievals. In such fit range the overall systematic uncertainty is about 0.87 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 , much smaller than those in the other two ranges. The typical random uncertainty is es- timated to be about 0.16 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 , which is only 25 % of the total systematic uncertainty for most of the instruments in the MAD-CAT campaign. In summary for most of the MAX-DOAS instruments for elevation an- gle below 5 ◦ , half daytime measurements (usually in the morning) of HONO delta SCD can be over the detection limit of 0.2 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 with an uncertainty of ∼ 0.9 × 10 15 molecules cm − 2 .