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Global satellite observations of column-averaged carbon dioxide and methane: The GHG-CCI XCO_2 and XCH_4 CRDP3 data set

Buchwitz, M. and Reuter, M. and Schneising, O. and Hewson, W. and Detmers, R. G. and Boesch, H. and Hasekamp, O. P. and Aben, I. and Bovensmann, H. and Burrows, J. P. and Butz, A. and Chevallier, F. and Dils, B. and Frankenberg, C. and Heymann, J. and Lichtenberg, G. and De Mazière, M. and Notholt, J. and Parker, R. and Warneke, T. and Zehner, C. and Griffith, D. W. T. and Deutscher, N. M. and Kuze, A. and Suto, H. and Wunch, D. (2017) Global satellite observations of column-averaged carbon dioxide and methane: The GHG-CCI XCO_2 and XCH_4 CRDP3 data set. Remote Sensing of Environment, 203 . pp. 276-295. ISSN 0034-4257. doi:10.1016/j.rse.2016.12.027.

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Carbon dioxide (CO_2) and methane (CH_4) are the two most important greenhouse gases emitted by mankind. Better knowledge of the surface sources and sinks of these Essential Climate Variables (ECVs) and related carbon uptake and release processes is needed for important climate change related applications such as improved climate modelling and prediction. Some satellites provide near-surface-sensitive atmospheric CO_2 and CH_4 observations that can be used to obtain information on CO_2 and CH_4 surface fluxes. The goal of the GHG-CCI project of the European Space Agency's (ESA) Climate Change Initiative (CCI) is to use satellite data to generate atmospheric CO_2 and CH_4 data products meeting demanding GCOS (Global Climate Observing System) greenhouse gas (GHG) ECV requirements. To achieve this, retrieval algorithms are regularly being improved followed by annual data reprocessing and analysis cycles to generate better products in terms of extended time series and continuously improved data quality. Here we present an overview about the latest GHG-CCI data set called Climate Research Data Package No. 3 (CRDP3) focusing on the GHG-CCI core data products, which are column-averaged dry-air mole fractions of CO_2 and CH_4, i.e., XCO_2 and XCH_4, as retrieved from SCIAMACHY/ENVISAT and TANSO/GOSAT satellite radiances covering the time period end of 2002 to end of 2014. We present global maps and time series including initial validation results obtained by comparisons with Total Carbon Column Observing Network (TCCON) ground-based observations. We show that the GCOS requirements for systematic error (< 1 ppm for XCO_2, < 10 ppb for XCH_4) and long-term stability (< 0.2 ppm/year for XCO_2, < 2 ppb/year for XCH_4) are met for nearly all products (an exception is SCIAMACHY methane especially since 2010). For XCO_2 we present comparisons with global models using the output of two CO_2 assimilation systems (MACC version 14r2 and CarbonTracker version CT2013B). We show that overall there is reasonable consistency and agreement between all data sets (within ~ 1–2 ppm) but we also found significant differences depending on region and time period.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Boesch, H.0000-0003-3944-9879
Butz, A.0000-0003-0593-1608
Chevallier, F.0000-0002-4327-3813
Frankenberg, C.0000-0002-0546-5857
Parker, R.0000-0002-0801-0831
Warneke, T.0000-0001-5185-3415
Griffith, D. W. T.0000-0002-7986-1924
Deutscher, N. M.0000-0002-2906-2577
Wunch, D.0000-0002-4924-0377
Alternate Title:Global satellite observations of column-averaged carbon dioxide and methane: The GHG-CCI XCO 2 and XCH 4 CRDP3 data set
Additional Information:© 2017 Elsevier. Received 2 June 2016, Revised 10 October 2016, Accepted 30 December 2016, Available online 9 January 2017. This study has been funded by ESA (ESA ESRIN/Contract No. 4000109871/14/I-NB) via the GHG-CCI project of ESA's Climate Change Initiative (CCI). We thank ESA/DLR for providing us with SCIAMACHY Level 1 data products and JAXA for GOSAT Level 1B data. We also thank ESA for making these GOSAT products available via the ESA Third Party Mission archive. We also thank the TCCON team (in particular P. Wennberg, CalTech) for providing TCCON data (obtained via, the European MACC/CAMS projects for providing CO_2 model fields (obtained from and NOAA/ESRL for providing CarbonTracker data (obtained via
Funding AgencyGrant Number
European Space Agency (ESA)4000109871/14/I-NB
Subject Keywords:SCIAMACHY; GOSAT; Greenhouse gases; Carbon dioxide; Methane; Climate change
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180104-160725642
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:M. Buchwitz, M. Reuter, O. Schneising, W. Hewson, R.G. Detmers, H. Boesch, O.P. Hasekamp, I. Aben, H. Bovensmann, J.P. Burrows, A. Butz, F. Chevallier, B. Dils, C. Frankenberg, J. Heymann, G. Lichtenberg, M. De Mazière, J. Notholt, R. Parker, T. Warneke, C. Zehner, D.W.T. Griffith, N.M. Deutscher, A. Kuze, H. Suto, D. Wunch, Global satellite observations of column-averaged carbon dioxide and methane: The GHG-CCI XCO2 and XCH4 CRDP3 data set, In Remote Sensing of Environment, Volume 203, 2017, Pages 276-295, ISSN 0034-4257, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:84110
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:05 Jan 2018 15:34
Last Modified:15 Nov 2021 20:16

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