Ground-based assessment of Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS) data for dust transport over the northeastern Mediterranean

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Kubilay N., Oguz T., Kocak M. , Torres O.

GLOBAL BIOGEOCHEMICAL CYCLES, vol.19, no.1, 2005 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 19 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2005
  • Doi Number: 10.1029/2004gb002370


[ 1] Multiyear daily surface aerosol aluminum ( Al) concentration and sunphotometer measurements at Erdemli ( Turkey) sampling station were used to assess the performance of Absorbing Aerosol Index ( AAI) and Aerosol Optical Thickness ( AOT) retrieved from the daily Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer ( TOMS) over the northeastern Mediterranean. A total of 98 moderate- to- high intensity dust events with durations from 1 day to 1 week were identified by aerosol Al concentrations and/ or TOMS- AAI above their threshold values of 1.0 mu g m (-3) and 0.5, respectively. Only 15 events were found to bring appreciable dust load into the northeastern Mediterranean, predominantly below the 850- hPa pressure level, and therefore were not detected effectively by TOMS. Eight of these events corresponded to short- range high intensity intrusions ( Al > 3.0 mu g m (-3)) from nearby dust sources of the Middle East and Arabian deserts, the rest ( seven events) represented moderate- to- high intensity ( Al > 1.0 mu g m (-3)) long- range transport from North Africa. Given the highly complex dynamics of the region, the use of TOMS- AAI data is justified for monitoring Saharan dust transport characteristics in the northeastern Mediterranean. Moreover, the TOMS- AOT data were found to covary linearly with its counterpart obtained by the ground- based measurements ( correlation coefficient 0.86, significant at < 0.001), which lies within the range of estimates suggested by earlier studies.