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Kaskaoutis, DG, Nastos, PT, Kosmopoulos, PG, Kambezidis, HD (2010). "The combined use of satellite data, air-mass trajectories and model applications for monitoring dust transport over Athens, Greece". INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF REMOTE SENSING, 31(19), 5089-5109.

This study focused on Saharan dust (SD) events over Athens, Greece, based on measurements of the daily aerosol optical depth at 550 nm (AOD550) and the fine-mode fraction (FM) derived from Terra Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) observations. Back-trajectories ending at Athens at altitudes of 500, 1000 and 4000m were calculated by means of the Hybrid Single-Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory (HYSPLIT) model. Several criteria were taken into account to identify the SD events. According to these criteria and the altitudes of the air masses, three dust transport mechanisms were identified: (1) vertical transport (VT), including the whole atmospheric column, (2) upper atmosphere transport (UAT), above the atmospheric boundary layer, and (3) boundary layer transport (BLT), only within the lower atmospheric levels. The Aerosol Index (AI) derived from Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS) data was found to be adequate for characterization of the dust load over Athens, while higher values of the AI were found in cases where the dust was transported in the upper atmosphere. The predictions of the Dust Regional Atmospheric Model (DREAM) were consistent with the satellite observations and back trajectories, indicating the suitability of the model for monitoring dust transport over the Mediterranean. The analysis presents three case studies, one for each transport mechanism, where the aerosol field deduced from satellites and models is presented over the Eastern Mediterranean. In conclusion, this study shows that the combination of remote sensing measurements and back-trajectory calculations constitutes a powerful tool for the identification of SD events over Athens, while modelling can monitor the spread of the dust.



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