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Atmospheric Composition, Climate Variability & Change

Mineral dust is an important climate-forcing factor, causing large and variable radiative effects on local and global scales. One current outstanding issue is the quantification of spatial and temporal variability of the dust burden and properties for reducing uncertainty in dust direct radiative forcing predictions. Despite modeling studies that have investigated intercontinental dust transport, the estimated uncertainty in dust deposition is at least an order of magnitude in some regions, due to high spatial and temporal variability and limited observations. Our previous work demonstrates how MISR and MODIS space-based aerosol products provide complementary information, characterizing (1) transported desert dust plume extent over water, (2) aerosol optical thickness (AOT) evolution, and (3) particle size and fraction spherical evolution for the thicker parts of these plumes. We also demonstrated that stereo-derived plume heights from MISR could provide dust cloud elevation, within about a few hundred kilometers downwind of major sources. These data represent constraints that the satellites offer for aerosol transport model validation, and for obtaining additional information about dust lofting and intercontinental transport. In this project, we will use the JPL Aerosol Measurement and Processing System (AMAPS) data analysis system to analyze the MISR and MODIS joint products, to characterize seasonal and inter-annual variability of dust-plume property evolution, vertical profiles, and deposition. MISR observations will be used to map dust source properties and dust plume heights near but downwind of the sources. We will supplement our analysis with CALIPSO data and AERONET retrievals where available. Our results will be used to compare and improve dust parameterization of three transport models: the Goddard Chemistry Aerosol Radiation and Transport (GOCART), the NRL Aerosol Analysis and Prediction System (NAAPS) and Dust Regional Atmospheric Model (DREAM). In particular, we will: (1) Perform joint MISR/MODIS data analysis of North African dust transport for multiple years, providing a record containing seasonal and inter-annual variations in dust deposition. (2) Test model representations of dust source strength, plume dispersion, and dust removal rates during transport, working with three aerosol modeling groups, GOCART (Mian Chin) and NAAPS (Jianglong Zhang) and DREAM (Pavel Kishcha). (3) Work with the modelers to assess dust material transports and direct radiative effects with the constrained models.

Project PI: Olga Kalashnikova/Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Jet Propulsion Laboratory M/S 180-401 4800 Oak Grove Drive Pasadena, CA 91109

Phone: 818.393.0469

Fax: 818.393.4619

Email: Olga.V.Kalashnikova@jpl.nasa.gov

http://science.jpl.nasa.gov/people/Kalashnikova/

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Started: Aug 10, 2010

Last Activity: Dec 15, 2010

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