Vertical Distribution of Aerosol Extinction Cross Section and Inference of Aerosol Imaginary Index in the Troposphere by Lidar Technique

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  • 1 Institute of Atmospheric Physics, The University of Arizona, Tucson 85721
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Abstract

Vertical profiles of aerosol extinction and backscatter in the troposphere are obtained from multizenith angle lidar measurements. A direct slant path solution was found to be not possible due to horizontal inhomogeneity of the atmosphere. Regression analysis with respect to zenith angle for a layer integration of the angle-dependent lidar equation was thus employed to determine the optical thickness and aerosol extinction-to-backscatter ratio for defined atmospheric layers, and subsequently, cross-section profiles could be evaluated. Measurements were made with an elastic backscatter ruby lidar system with calibration by a standard target procedure. The results from 20 measurement cases are presented. For layer-aerosol optical thicknesses >0.04, useful results were obtained, and corroboration by solar radiometer aerosol optical depth data was found. The mean mixed-layer aerosol extinction-to-backscatter ratio for the measurements was 19.5 sr with a standard deviation of 8.3 sr. With the use of an aerosol size distribution inverted from wavelength-dependent solar aerosol optical depth data, the measured extinction-to-backscatter ratio was compared to Mie theory calculations, and the imaginary index giving best agreement was determined. A maximum upper limit of 0.015 was indicated for the aerosol imaginary index. but the mean result was 0.003 for a real index of 1.52.

Abstract

Vertical profiles of aerosol extinction and backscatter in the troposphere are obtained from multizenith angle lidar measurements. A direct slant path solution was found to be not possible due to horizontal inhomogeneity of the atmosphere. Regression analysis with respect to zenith angle for a layer integration of the angle-dependent lidar equation was thus employed to determine the optical thickness and aerosol extinction-to-backscatter ratio for defined atmospheric layers, and subsequently, cross-section profiles could be evaluated. Measurements were made with an elastic backscatter ruby lidar system with calibration by a standard target procedure. The results from 20 measurement cases are presented. For layer-aerosol optical thicknesses >0.04, useful results were obtained, and corroboration by solar radiometer aerosol optical depth data was found. The mean mixed-layer aerosol extinction-to-backscatter ratio for the measurements was 19.5 sr with a standard deviation of 8.3 sr. With the use of an aerosol size distribution inverted from wavelength-dependent solar aerosol optical depth data, the measured extinction-to-backscatter ratio was compared to Mie theory calculations, and the imaginary index giving best agreement was determined. A maximum upper limit of 0.015 was indicated for the aerosol imaginary index. but the mean result was 0.003 for a real index of 1.52.

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