Articles | Volume 8, issue 9
Research article
24 Sep 2015
Research article |  | 24 Sep 2015

The GOME-type Total Ozone Essential Climate Variable (GTO-ECV) data record from the ESA Climate Change Initiative

M. Coldewey-Egbers, D. G. Loyola, M. Koukouli, D. Balis, J.-C. Lambert, T. Verhoelst, J. Granville, M. van Roozendael, C. Lerot, R. Spurr, S. M. Frith, and C. Zehner

Abstract. We present the new GOME-type Total Ozone Essential Climate Variable (GTO-ECV) data record which has been created within the framework of the European Space Agency's Climate Change Initiative (ESA-CCI). Total ozone column observations – based on the GOME-type Direct Fitting version 3 algorithm – from GOME (Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment), SCIAMACHY (SCanning Imaging Absorption SpectroMeter for Atmospheric CHartographY), and GOME-2 have been combined into one homogeneous time series, thereby taking advantage of the high inter-sensor consistency. The data record spans the 15-year period from March 1996 to June 2011 and it contains global monthly mean total ozone columns on a 1°× 1° grid. Geophysical ground-based validation using Brewer, Dobson, and UV–visible instruments has shown that the GTO-ECV level 3 data record is of the same high quality as the equivalent individual level 2 data products that constitute it. Both absolute agreement and long-term stability are excellent with respect to the ground-based data, for almost all latitudes apart from a few outliers which are mostly due to sampling differences between the level 2 and level 3 data. We conclude that the GTO-ECV data record is valuable for a variety of climate applications such as the long-term monitoring of the past evolution of the ozone layer, trend analysis and the evaluation of chemistry–climate model simulations.