Retrieval of ozone profiles from OMPS limb scattering observations
Abstract. This study describes a retrieval algorithm developed at the University of Bremen to obtain vertical profiles of ozone from limb observations performed by the Ozone Mapper and Profiler Suite (OMPS). This algorithm is based on the technique originally developed for use with data from the SCanning Imaging Absorption spectroMeter for Atmospheric CHartographY (SCIAMACHY) instrument. As both instruments make limb measurements of the scattered solar radiation in the ultraviolet (UV) and visible (Vis) spectral ranges, an underlying objective of the study is to obtain consolidated and consistent ozone profiles from the two satellites and to produce a combined data set. The retrieval algorithm uses radiances in the UV and Vis wavelength ranges normalized to the radiance at an upper tangent height to obtain ozone concentrations in the altitude range of 12–60 km. Measurements at altitudes contaminated by clouds in the instrument field of view are identified and filtered out. An independent aerosol retrieval is performed beforehand and its results are used to account for the stratospheric aerosol load in the ozone inversion. The typical vertical resolution of the retrieved profiles varies from ∼ 2.5 km at lower altitudes ( < 30 km) to ∼ 1.5 km (about 45 km) and becomes coarser at upper altitudes. The retrieval errors resulting from the measurement noise are estimated to be 1–4 % above 25 km, increasing to 10–30 % in the upper troposphere. OMPS data are processed for the whole of 2016. The results are compared with the NASA product and validated against profiles derived from passive satellite observations or measured in situ by balloon-borne sondes. Between 20 and 60 km, OMPS ozone profiles typically agree with data from the Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) v4.2 within 5–10 %, whereas in the lower altitude range the bias becomes larger, especially in the tropics. The comparison of OMPS profiles with ozonesonde measurements shows differences within ±5 % between 13 and 30 km at northern middle and high latitudes. At southern middle and high latitudes, an agreement within 5–7 % is also achieved in the same altitude range. An unexpected bias of approximately 10–20 % is detected in the lower tropical stratosphere. The processing of the 2013 data set using the same retrieval settings and its validation against ozonesondes reveals a much smaller bias; a possible reason for this behaviour is discussed.