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Constraining Aerosol Vertical Profile in the Boundary Layer Using Hyperspectral Measurements of Oxygen Absorption

Zeng, Zhao-Cheng and Natraj, Vijay and Xu, Feng and Pongetti, Thomas J. and Shia, Run-Lie and Kort, Eric A. and Toon, Geoffrey C. and Sander, Stanley P. and Yung, Yuk L. (2018) Constraining Aerosol Vertical Profile in the Boundary Layer Using Hyperspectral Measurements of Oxygen Absorption. Geophysical Research Letters, 45 (19). pp. 10772-10780. ISSN 0094-8276. doi:10.1029/2018gl079286.

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This study attempts to infer aerosol vertical structure in the urban boundary layer using passive hyperspectral measurements. A spectral sorting technique is developed to retrieve total aerosol optical depth (AOD) and effective aerosol layer height (ALH) from hyperspectral measurements in the 1.27‐μm oxygen absorption band by the mountaintop Fourier Transform Spectrometer at the California Laboratory for Atmospheric Remote Sensing instrument (1,673 m above sea level) overlooking the LA basin. Comparison to AOD measurements from Aerosol Robotic Network and aerosol backscatter profile measurements from a Mini MicroPulse Lidar shows agreement, with coefficients of determination (r^2) of 0.74 for AOD and 0.57 for effective ALH. On average, the AOD retrieval has an error of 24.9% and root‐mean‐square error of 0.013, while the effective ALH retrieval has an error of 7.8% and root‐mean‐square error of 67.01 m. The proposed method can potentially be applied to existing and future satellite missions with hyperspectral oxygen measurements to constrain aerosol vertical distribution on a global scale.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Zeng, Zhao-Cheng0000-0002-0008-6508
Natraj, Vijay0000-0003-3154-9429
Xu, Feng0000-0001-5155-9478
Pongetti, Thomas J.0000-0001-9465-0853
Shia, Run-Lie0000-0003-1911-3120
Kort, Eric A.0000-0003-4940-7541
Toon, Geoffrey C.0000-0003-4174-7541
Sander, Stanley P.0000-0003-1424-3620
Yung, Yuk L.0000-0002-4263-2562
Additional Information:© 2018 American Geophysical Union. Received 20 JUN 2018; Accepted 23 SEP 2018; Accepted article online 27 SEP 2018; Published online 12 OCT 2018. We thank Jack Margolis, Chao Liu, Yuan Wang, Siteng Fan, Suniti Sanghavi, Mike Gunson, and Annmarie Eldering for stimulating discussions. V. N. acknowledges support from the NASA Earth Science US Participating Investigator program (solicitation NNH16ZDA001N‐ESUSPI). F. X. acknowledges support from NASA Remote Sensing Theory program under grant 14‐RST14‐0100. We are also thankful for the support from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory Research and Technology Development Program. Part of the research in this study was performed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The CLARS project receives support from the California Air Resources Board and the NIST GHG and Climate Science Program. The MiniMPL was supported by the KISS Program at Caltech; data are available from the NASA Megacity project data portal: AERONET data for the Caltech site are available from We also thank Jochen Stutz from UCLA and his staff for their effort in establishing and maintaining the AERONET Caltech site. CLARS‐FTS data are available from the authors upon request, and part of the data are available from the NASA Megacities Project at We are grateful to the two anonymous reviewers whose comments helped improve the paper.
Group:Keck Institute for Space Studies, Astronomy Department
Funding AgencyGrant Number
California Air Resources BoardUNSPECIFIED
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)UNSPECIFIED
Keck Institute for Space Studies (KISS)UNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Aerosol profiling; PBL; Remote Sensing; Hyperspectral; Megacity; CLARS
Issue or Number:19
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20181008-135406047
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Zeng, Z.‐C., Natraj, V., Xu, F., Pongetti, T. J., Shia, R.‐L., Kort, E. A., et al. (2018). Constraining aerosol vertical profile in the boundary layer using hyperspectral measurements of oxygen absorption. Geophysical Research Letters, 45, 10,772–10,780.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:90156
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:08 Oct 2018 21:46
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 00:41

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