Some efforts have already been conducted in the main megacities in order to reduce their emissions (e.g. traffic regulations, shift from coal to natural gas for domestic uses ). Anyhow there is still a strong need for air quality forecasting improvement. This will be handled by a better description and understanding of the processes controlling the vertical distribution of aerosols.
The ALS and WLS lidar remote sensors from LEOSPHERE are offering the best solution to tackle these challenges by providing the dynamical structure of the atmosphere along any line of sight. As a result, the ALS can therefore retrieve automatically and continuously the height of the planetary boundary layer which is controlling the dilution of pollutants. But It can also detect any plume around up to several kms away, and track it. Individual sources of pollution will be then highlighted. Hence, adding some information about the type of aerosols emitted, the ALS will be able to get the information on the mass concentration.
The WLS provides the profile of wind speed and direction, turbulence and vertical winds, which are of key interest to forecast the formation, transformation and dissipation of pollutants.
Aerosols may have a greater impact on patterns of overall rainfall and future climate change than previously thought. In example, the extensive pollution haze emanating from Asia may be re-shaping rainfall patterns in northern Australia. Recent climate modelling shows that there may be important effects on southern hemisphere climate due to aerosol pollution from the Northern Hemisphere. These include an increase of rainfall certain areas, and an increase of air pressure over others, which may have contributed to less rainfall there. The ALS can measure and detect different aerosol layers and through the backscattering trajectories it is possible to identify the original pollution source causing major climate changes.
What's the contribution of the regional pollution to the concentrations of particulate matter recorded locally? Regional-to-local transfer of pollutants is indeed a growing concern expressed by air quality managers. Monitoring the vertical structure of the urban and regional atmosphere, while identifying the primary nature of aerosols (anthropogenic from mineral dust for example) brings an innovative contribution to the challenge that is supported by the ALS 300 and its ability to monitor continuously the evolution of the mixing layer above, as well as to discriminate the rough shape of the particles.
American Meteorological Society annual meeting will be held in Atlanta from the 17th to the 21st of January 2010. The 90th meeting will focus on "Weather, Climate and Subject: New demands on science & services". We will be pleased to welcome you on our [...] Read more »