Aerosol transport over the Andes from the Amazon Basin to the remote Pacific Ocean: A multiyear CALIOP assessment
2015 (English)In: Journal of Geophysical Research - Atmospheres, ISSN 2169-897X, E-ISSN 2169-8996, Vol. 120, no 16, 8411-8425 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Six years (200702012) of data from the Cloud-Aerosol Lidar with Orthogonal Polarization (CALIOP) satellite instrument were used to investigate the vertical distribution and transport of aerosols over the tropical South American continent and the southeast Pacific Ocean. The multiyear aerosol extinction assessment indicates that aerosols, mainly biomass burning particles emitted during the dry season in the Amazon Basin, are lifted in significant amounts over the Andes. The aerosols are mainly transported in the planetary boundary layer between the surface and 2 km altitude with an aerosol extinction maximum near the surface. During the transport toward the Andes, the aerosol extinction decreases at a rate of 0.02 km(-1) per kilometer of altitude likely due to dilution and deposition processes. Aerosols reaching the top of the Andes, at altitudes typically between 4 and 5 km, are entrained into the free troposphere (FT) over the southeast Pacific Ocean. A comparison between CALIOP observations and ERA-Interim reanalysis data indicates that during their long-range transport over the tropical Pacific Ocean, these aerosols are slowly transported toward the marine boundary layer by the large-scale subsidence at a rate of 0.4 cm s(-1). The observed vertical/horizontal transport ratio is 0.700.8 m km(-1) Continental aerosols linked to transport over the Andes can be traced on average over 4000 km away from the continent indicating an aerosol residence time of 809 days in the FT over the Pacific Ocean. The FT aerosol optical depth (AOD) above the Pacific Ocean near South American coast accounts on average for 6% and 25% of the total AOD during the season of low and high biomass burning, respectively. This result shows that, during the biomass burning season, continental aerosols largely influence the AOD over the remote southeast Pacific Ocean. Overall, FT AOD decrease exponentially with the distance to continental sources at a rate of about 10% per degree of longitude over the Pacific Ocean.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 120, no 16, 8411-8425 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-122274DOI: 10.1002/2015JD023254ISI: 000363425200025OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-122274DiVA: diva2:865578
FunderSwedish National Space Board