Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2021-408
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2021-408

  21 Dec 2021

21 Dec 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal AMT.

A Relaxed Eddy Accumulation (REA) LOPAP-System for Flux Measurements of Nitrous Acid (HONO)

Lisa von der Heyden, Walter Wißdorf, Ralf Kurtenbach, and Jörg Kleffmann Lisa von der Heyden et al.
  • Department of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, Faculty for Mathematics and Natural Sciences, University of Wuppertal, 42097 Wuppertal, Germany

Abstract. In the present study a Relaxed Eddy Accumulation (REA) system for the quantification of vertical fluxes of nitrous acid (HONO) was developed and tested. The system is based on a three-channel-LOPAP instrument, for which two channels are used for the updrafts and downdrafts, respectively, and a third one for the correction of chemical interferences. The instrument is coupled to a REA gas inlet, for which an ultrasonic anemometer controls two fast magnetic valves to probe the two channels of the LOPAP instrument depending on the vertical wind direction. A software (PyREA) was developed, which controls the valves and measurement cycles, which regularly alternates between REA-, zero- and parallel ambient measurements. In addition, the assignment of the updrafts and downdrafts to the physical LOPAP channels is periodically alternated, to correct for differences in the interferences of the different air masses. During the study, only small differences of the interferences were identified for the updrafts and downdrafts excluding significant errors when using only one interference channel. In laboratory experiments, high precision of the two channels and the independence of the dilution corrected HONO concentrations on the length of the valve switching periods were demonstrated.

A field campaign was performed in order to test the new REA-LOPAP system at the TROPOS monitoring station in Melpitz, Germany. HONO fluxes in the range of −4·1013 molecules m−2 s−1 (deposition) to +1.0·1014 molecules m−2 s−1 (emission) were obtained. A typical diurnal variation of the HONO fluxes was observed with low, partly negative fluxes during night-time and higher positive fluxes around noon. After an intensive rain period the positive HONO emissions during daytime were continuously increasing, which was explained by the drying of the upper most ground surfaces. Similar to other campaigns, the highest correlation of the HONO flux was observed with the product of the NO2 photolysis frequency and the NO2 concentration (J(NO2)·[NO2]), which implies a HONO formation by photosensitized conversion of NO2 on organic surfaces, like e.g. humic acids. Other postulated HONO formation mechanisms are also discussed, but are ranked being of minor importance for the present field campaign.

Lisa von der Heyden et al.

Status: open (until 25 Jan 2022)

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  • RC1: 'Comment on amt-2021-408', Anonymous Referee #1, 06 Jan 2022 reply

Lisa von der Heyden et al.

Lisa von der Heyden et al.

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Short summary
A Relaxed Eddy Accumulation (REA) system based on the LOPAP technique for the quantification of vertical fluxes of nitrous acid (HONO) was developed and tested in a field campaign. Typical diurnal variations of the HONO fluxes were observed with low, partly negative fluxes during night-time and higher positive fluxes around noon. The highest correlation of the HONO flux was observed with the product of the NO2 photolysis frequency and the NO2 concentration.