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Long-Range Transmission of Pollutants Simulated by a Two-Dimensional Pseudospectral Dispersion Model

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  • 1 Danish Meteorological Institute, Copenhagen, Denmark
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Abstract

The pseudospectral dispersion model (Christensen and Prahm, 1976) is adapted for simulation of the long-range transmission of sulphur pollutants in the European region, covering an area of about 4000 km × 4000 km. Regional “background” concentrations of sulphur oxides are found to be highly dependent on distant sources and to correlate poorly with local source strength during the considered three- and four-day episodes. The simulation is based on emission data, given in squares of about 50 km × 50 km and on synoptic wind fields derived from observed wind velocities of the 850 mb level and the surface level. The two-dimensional model includes a constant vertical mixing depth. Appropriate values for the deposition and the transformation rates of SO2 and SO4=(??) are used. The concentration of pollutants computed from the two-dimensional pseudospectral dispersion model reflects the variable meteorological conditions. Computed concentrations are compared with measurements, giving spatial correlations between 0.4 and 0.8 for more than 400 ground-based 24 h mean values, and a spatial correlation of 0.9 for eight aircraft samples averaged over ∼30 min. A discussion of the influence of different sources of error in the model simulation is given. The high numerical accuracy of the pseudospectral model is combined with a modest consumption of CPU computer time. This study is the first application of the pseudospectral dispersion model which compares computed concentrations with measured field data. The model has possible applications as a tool for assessment of the impact of both national and international emission regulation strategies.

Abstract

The pseudospectral dispersion model (Christensen and Prahm, 1976) is adapted for simulation of the long-range transmission of sulphur pollutants in the European region, covering an area of about 4000 km × 4000 km. Regional “background” concentrations of sulphur oxides are found to be highly dependent on distant sources and to correlate poorly with local source strength during the considered three- and four-day episodes. The simulation is based on emission data, given in squares of about 50 km × 50 km and on synoptic wind fields derived from observed wind velocities of the 850 mb level and the surface level. The two-dimensional model includes a constant vertical mixing depth. Appropriate values for the deposition and the transformation rates of SO2 and SO4=(??) are used. The concentration of pollutants computed from the two-dimensional pseudospectral dispersion model reflects the variable meteorological conditions. Computed concentrations are compared with measurements, giving spatial correlations between 0.4 and 0.8 for more than 400 ground-based 24 h mean values, and a spatial correlation of 0.9 for eight aircraft samples averaged over ∼30 min. A discussion of the influence of different sources of error in the model simulation is given. The high numerical accuracy of the pseudospectral model is combined with a modest consumption of CPU computer time. This study is the first application of the pseudospectral dispersion model which compares computed concentrations with measured field data. The model has possible applications as a tool for assessment of the impact of both national and international emission regulation strategies.

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