Global observations of the carbon budget 1. Expected satellite capabilities for emission spectroscopy in the EOS and NPOESS eras

Richard J. Engelen, A. Scott Denning, Kevin R. Gurney, Graeme L. Stephens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

40 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper investigates the expected capabilities of the new generation of infrared satellite sounders for detecting CO2. A general circulation model is used to simulate realistic CO2 fields and to define the needed accuracy of CO2 observations in order to be useful in constraining surface sources and sinks of CO2, which will be described in more detail in a future paper. Optimal estimation retrieval theory is then used to determine the possible accuracy of the satellite measurements and to define the retrieval characteristics. A discussion of several factors that affect the retrievals is also included. We conclude that tropospheric column retrievals of CO2 are possible with an accuracy of better than 1 ppmv on a monthly mean basis. Several factors, like thin cirrus clouds and radiative transfer modeling errors, will degrade these results if not carefully accounted for. The possibility of extensive time and spatial averaging of the satellite observations will overcome some of these problems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2001JD900223
Pages (from-to)20055-20068
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research Atmospheres
Volume106
Issue numberD17
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 16 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Forestry
  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology

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