Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Near-real Time Ozone Forecasting Made Possible By Envisat

Date:
November 6, 2003
Source:
European Space Agency
Summary:
Stratospheric data supplied by Envisat are the basis for a near-real time global ozone forecasting service now available online.

Stratospheric data supplied by Envisat are the basis for a near-real time global ozone forecasting service now available online.

Up in the stratosphere about 25 km above our heads is the ozone layer. Stratospheric ozone absorbs up to 98% of the Sun's harmful ultraviolet light – making the difference between a suntan and sunburn, and safeguarding all life on Earth. But chemical activity in the stratosphere ultimately due to the presence of manmade gases such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) can thin the ozone layer.

The Brussels-based Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BIRA-IASB from its initials in Flemish and French) has developed a service called the Belgian Assimilation System of Chemical Observations from Envisat (BASCOE) that maps and forecasts not only the concentration of ozone in the stratosphere but also 56 other chemical species, including those responsible for ozone depletion.

BASCOE relies on an instrument aboard Envisat called the Michelson Interferometer for Passive Atmospheric Sounding (MIPAS). It works day and night to measure infrared emissions from the Earth's 'limb' – the narrow band of atmosphere between the planetary surface and empty space. Emissions along certain wavelengths work like signatures, indicating the presence of specific atmospheric chemicals.

MIPAS has the capability to measure up to 30 trace gas species, but for the time being only a subset of them is provided by the ESA ground segment operationally to the user community. The others whose concentrations are forecast by BASCOE have their presence calculated indirectly, by assimilating MIPAS level 2 products into a complex computer model of stratospheric chemistry processes developed by BIRA-IASB. The resultant analyses are available within a day.

"The stratosphere is one of the best-understood areas of atmospheric chemistry, a fact which makes the BASCOE model possible," explained Dominique Fonteyn of BIRA-IASB. "In fact this model predates the launch of Envisat, and was originally intended simply as a summary of our existing understanding of stratospheric chemistry. But the large amount of work that went into it – some 50,000 lines of code – made us look at using it in other ways, and assimilating Envisat data into it for operational use.

"The aim was to reduce the usual time delay between satellite observation and data use, in the same way weather forecasting does. As well as chemical interactions, the model also includes weather data provided by the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts, because polar stratospheric clouds transported by winds play a major role in the process of ozone destruction."

Users of the service – available at http://bascoe.oma.be - can obtain forecasts of global ozone levels for the week ahead as well as maps of nitric acid trihydrate (NAT) and active chlorine (ClOx), both implicated in ozone thinning.

The intention to use the MIPAS data to 'fine-tune' the model in future for increased accuracy, along with assimilating data from other Envisat instruments such as GOMOS (Global Ozone Monitoring by Occultation of Stars) and SCIAMACHY (Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Cartography) once they become available.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Space Agency. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

European Space Agency. "Near-real Time Ozone Forecasting Made Possible By Envisat." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 November 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/11/031104063134.htm>.
European Space Agency. (2003, November 6). Near-real Time Ozone Forecasting Made Possible By Envisat. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/11/031104063134.htm
European Space Agency. "Near-real Time Ozone Forecasting Made Possible By Envisat." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/11/031104063134.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 24, 2014) The eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, mainly known for conflict and instability, is an unlikely place for the production of fine cheese. But a farm in the village of Masisi, in North Kivu is slowly transforming perceptions of the area. Known simply as Goma cheese, the Congolese version of Dutch gouda has gained popularity through out the region. Ciara Sutton reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bill Gates: Health, Agriculture Key to Africa's Development

Bill Gates: Health, Agriculture Key to Africa's Development

AFP (July 24, 2014) Health and agriculture development are key if African countries are to overcome poverty and grow, US software billionaire Bill Gates said Thursday, as he received an honourary degree in Ethiopia. Duration: 00:36 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Higgins Breaks Record at Mt. Washington

Higgins Breaks Record at Mt. Washington

Driving Sports (July 24, 2014) Subaru Rally Team USA drivers David Higgins and Travis Pastrana face off against a global contingent of racers at the annual Mt. Washington Hillclimb in New Hampshire. Includes exclusive in-car footage from Higgins' record attempt. Video provided by Driving Sports
Powered by NewsLook.com
Storm Kills Three, Injures 20 at Virginia Campground

Storm Kills Three, Injures 20 at Virginia Campground

Reuters - US Online Video (July 24, 2014) A likely tornado tears through an eastern Virginia campground, killing three and injuring at least 20. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins