Lower Tropospheric Ozone Measurements by Light Aircraft Equipped with Chemiluminescent Sonde

I. G. McKendry Atmospheric Science Programme, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

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D. G. Steyn Atmospheric Science Programme, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

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S. O’Kane Levelton Associates, Richmond, British Columbia, Canada

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P. Zawar-Reza Department of Geography, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand

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D. Heuff Department of Mathematics, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand

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Abstract

Novel use of a commercial, battery-powered, chemiluminescent ozonesonde on a light aircraft is described. This fast-response instrument, originally designed for balloon deployment into the stratosphere, is light, inexpensive, robust (reuseable), reliable, and accurate. Integration with other lightweight components (data logger, global positioning system, pressure, temperature, and humidity sensors) renders the system suitable for use in a light (rental) aircraft with no modification of the aircraft required. The system is well suited to routine reconnaissance and vertical profiling in regions of complex terrain, and with well-designed field studies, mass budget analyses are feasible. The application and validation of the system is described for the Lower Fraser Valley, British Columbia, a region of complex coastal terrain where photochemical smog is a significant problem in the summer months.

Corresponding author address: Ian G. McKendry, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, ;ns217-1984 West Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2, Canada.

Email: ian@geog.ubc.ca

Abstract

Novel use of a commercial, battery-powered, chemiluminescent ozonesonde on a light aircraft is described. This fast-response instrument, originally designed for balloon deployment into the stratosphere, is light, inexpensive, robust (reuseable), reliable, and accurate. Integration with other lightweight components (data logger, global positioning system, pressure, temperature, and humidity sensors) renders the system suitable for use in a light (rental) aircraft with no modification of the aircraft required. The system is well suited to routine reconnaissance and vertical profiling in regions of complex terrain, and with well-designed field studies, mass budget analyses are feasible. The application and validation of the system is described for the Lower Fraser Valley, British Columbia, a region of complex coastal terrain where photochemical smog is a significant problem in the summer months.

Corresponding author address: Ian G. McKendry, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, ;ns217-1984 West Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2, Canada.

Email: ian@geog.ubc.ca

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