Articles | Volume 5, issue 10
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 5, 2403–2411, 2012
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 5, 2403–2411, 2012

Research article 16 Oct 2012

Research article | 16 Oct 2012

Quantitative bias estimates for tropospheric NO2 columns retrieved from SCIAMACHY, OMI, and GOME-2 using a common standard for East Asia

H. Irie1, K. F. Boersma2,3, Y. Kanaya4, H. Takashima4,5, X. Pan4, and Z. F. Wang6 H. Irie et al.
  • 1Center for Environmental Remote Sensing, Chiba University, 1-33 Yayoicho, Inage-ku, Chiba 263-8522, Japan
  • 2Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute, Climate Observations Department, P.O. Box 201, 3730 AE De Bilt, The Netherlands
  • 3Eindhoven University of Technology, Fluid Dynamics Lab, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
  • 4Research Institute for Global Change, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, 3173-25 Showa-machi, Kanazawa-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa 236-0001, Japan
  • 5Department of Earth System Science, Faculty of Science, Fukuoka University, 8-19-1 Nanakuma, Jounan-ku, Fukuoka 814-0180, Japan
  • 6LAPC, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029, China

Abstract. For the intercomparison of tropospheric nitrogen dioxide (NO2) vertical column density (VCD) data from three different satellite sensors (SCIAMACHY, OMI, and GOME-2), we use a common standard to quantitatively evaluate the biases for the respective data sets. As the standard, a regression analysis using a single set of collocated ground-based Multi-Axis Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (MAX-DOAS) observations at several sites in Japan and China from 2006–2011 is adopted. Examinations of various spatial coincidence criteria indicates that the slope of the regression line can be influenced by the spatial distribution of NO2 over the area considered. While the slope varies systematically with the distance between the MAX-DOAS and satellite observation points around Tokyo in Japan, such a systematic dependence is not clearly seen and correlation coefficients are generally higher in comparisons at sites in China. On the basis of these results, we focus mainly on comparisons over China and estimate the biases in SCIAMACHY, OMI, and GOME-2 data (TM4NO2A and DOMINO version 2 products) against the MAX-DOAS observations to be −5 ± 14%, −10 ± 14%, and +1 ± 14%, respectively, which are all small and insignificant. We suggest that these small biases now allow for analyses combining these satellite data for air quality studies, which are more systematic and quantitative than previously possible.