Articles | Volume 7, issue 12
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 7, 4049–4070, 2014
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 7, 4049–4070, 2014

Research article 02 Dec 2014

Research article | 02 Dec 2014

Constrained two-stream algorithm for calculating aerosol light absorption coefficient from the Particle Soot Absorption Photometer

T. Müller1, A. Virkkula2,3,4, and J. A. Ogren5 T. Müller et al.
  • 1Leibniz Institute for Tropospheric Research, Leipzig, Germany
  • 2Finnish Meteorological Institute, Air Quality Research, Helsinki, Finland
  • 3University of Helsinki, Department of Physics, Helsinki, Finland
  • 4Institute for Climate and Global Change Research, School of Atmospheric Sciences Nanjing, University Nanjing, Nanjing, China
  • 5NOAA, Earth System Research Laboratory, Boulder, CO 80305, USA

Abstract. We present a new correction scheme for filter-based absorption photometers based on a constrained two-stream (CTS) radiative transfer model and experimental calibrations. The two-stream model was initialized using experimentally accessible optical parameters of the filter. Experimental calibrations were taken from the literature and from dedicated experiments for the present manuscript. Uncertainties in the model and calibration experiments are discussed and uncertainties for retrieval of absorption coefficients are derived. For single-scattering albedos lower than 0.8, the new CTS method and also other correction schemes suffer from the uncertainty in calibration experiments, with an uncertainty of about 20% in the absorption coefficient. For high single-scattering albedos, the CTS correction significantly reduces errors. At a single-scattering albedo of about 0.98 the error can be reduced to 30%, whereas errors using the Bond correction (Bond et al., 1999) are up to 100%. The correction scheme was tested using data from an independent experiment. The tests confirm the modeled performance of the correction scheme when comparing the CTS method to other established correction methods.