06 Sep 2023
 | 06 Sep 2023
Status: a revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal AMT.

Observing Low Altitude Features in Ozone Concentrations in a Shoreline Environment via Unmanned Aerial Systems

Josie K. Radtke, Benjamin N. Kies, Whitney A. Mottishaw, Sydney M. Zeuli, Aidan T. H. Voon, Kelly L. Koerber, Grant W. Petty, Michael Vermeuel, Timothy H. Bertram, Ankur R. Desai, Joseph P. Hupy, R. Bradley Pierce, Timothy J. Wagner, and Patricia A. Cleary

Abstract. Ozone is a pollutant formed in the atmosphere by photochemical processes involving nitrogen oxides (NOx) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) when exposed to sunlight. Tropospheric boundary layer ozone is regularly measured at ground stations and sampled infrequently through balloon, lidar, and crewed aircraft platforms, which have demonstrated characteristic patterns with altitude. Here, to better resolve vertical profiles of ozone within the atmospheric boundary layer, we developed and evaluated an unmanned aircraft system (UAS) platform for measuring ozone and meteorological parameters of temperature, pressure, and humidity. To evaluate this approach, an UAS was flown with a portable ozone monitor and a meteorological temperature and humidity sensor to compare to tall tower measurements in northern Wisconsin. In June 2020, as a part of the WiscoDISCO20 campaign, a DJI M600 hexacopter UAS was flown with the same sensors to measure Lake Michigan shoreline ozone concentrations. This latter UAS experiment revealed low-altitude structure in ozone concentrations in a shoreline environment showing highest ozone at altitudes from 20–100 mAGL. These first such measurements of low-altitude ozone via UAS in the Great Lakes Region revealed a very shallow layer of ozone rich air lying above the surface.

Josie K. Radtke et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on amt-2023-143', Anonymous Referee #1, 28 Sep 2023
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC1', Patricia Cleary, 09 Nov 2023
  • RC2: 'Comment on amt-2023-143', Anonymous Referee #2, 30 Sep 2023
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC2', Patricia Cleary, 09 Nov 2023

Josie K. Radtke et al.

Josie K. Radtke et al.


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Short summary
This research focused on impact of Chicago pollution plumes on a shoreline area in Kenosha, WI to address the regional issue of high ozone concentrations which get confined within marine air masses over Lake Michigan and move on shore during lake breezes. This manuscript describes the unmanned aerial systems (UAS) observations near the Lake Michigan shoreline that show layers of ozone within this marine air.