Articles | Volume 8, issue 1
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 8, 81–95, 2015

Special issue: Atmospheric limb imaging with GLORIA

Atmos. Meas. Tech., 8, 81–95, 2015
Research article
09 Jan 2015
Research article | 09 Jan 2015

Retrieval of three-dimensional small-scale structures in upper-tropospheric/lower-stratospheric composition as measured by GLORIA

M. Kaufmann1, J. Blank1,*, T. Guggenmoser1, J. Ungermann1, A. Engel7, M. Ern1, F. Friedl-Vallon2, D. Gerber4, J. U. Grooß1, G. Guenther1, M. Höpfner2, A. Kleinert2, E. Kretschmer2, Th. Latzko2, G. Maucher2, T. Neubert9, H. Nordmeyer2, H. Oelhaf2, F. Olschewski3, J. Orphal2, P. Preusse1, H. Schlager8, H. Schneider9, D. Schuettemeyer6, F. Stroh1, O. Suminska-Ebersoldt2, B. Vogel1, C. M. Volk3, W. Woiwode2, and M. Riese1 M. Kaufmann et al.
  • 1Institute of Energy and Climate Research, Stratosphere (IEK-7), Research Centre Jülich, 52425 Jülich, Germany
  • 2Institute for Meteorology and Climate Research, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Karlsruhe, Germany
  • 3Physics Department, University of Wuppertal, 42097 Wuppertal, Germany
  • 4RAL Space, STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Harwell Oxford, Didcot, OX11 0QX, UK
  • 6European Space Agency, Mission Science Division, 2200AG Noordwijk, the Netherlands
  • 7Institute for Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, Goethe University Frankfurt, 60438 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
  • 8German Aerospace Center, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Atmospheric Trace Species, 82234 Oberpfaffenhofen-Wessling, Germany
  • 9Central Institute of Engineering, Electronics and Analytics (ZEA-2) – Electronic Systems, Research Centre Jülich, Jülich, Germany
  • *now at: Google Inc., Dublin, Ireland

Abstract. The three-dimensional quantification of small-scale processes in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere is one of the challenges of current atmospheric research and requires the development of new measurement strategies. This work presents the first results from the newly developed Gimballed Limb Observer for Radiance Imaging of the Atmosphere (GLORIA) obtained during the ESSenCe (ESa Sounder Campaign) and TACTS/ESMVal (TACTS: Transport and composition in the upper troposphere/lowermost stratosphere, ESMVal: Earth System Model Validation) aircraft campaigns. The focus of this work is on the so-called dynamics-mode data characterized by a medium-spectral and a very-high-spatial resolution. The retrieval strategy for the derivation of two- and three-dimensional constituent fields in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere is presented. Uncertainties of the main retrieval targets (temperature, O3, HNO3, and CFC-12) and their spatial resolution are discussed. During ESSenCe, high-resolution two-dimensional cross-sections have been obtained. Comparisons to collocated remote-sensing and in situ data indicate a good agreement between the data sets. During TACTS/ESMVal, a tomographic flight pattern to sense an intrusion of stratospheric air deep into the troposphere was performed. It was possible to reconstruct this filament at an unprecedented spatial resolution of better than 500 m vertically and 20 × 20 km horizontally.