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He, QS, Li, CC, Mao, JT, Lau, AKH, Chu, DA (2008). Analysis of aerosol vertical distribution and variability in Hong Kong. JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH-ATMOSPHERES, 113(D14), D14211.

Aerosol vertical distribution is an important piece of information to improve aerosol retrieval from satellite remote sensing. Aerosol extinction coefficient profile and its integral form, aerosol optical depth (AOD), as well as atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) height and haze layer height can be derived using lidar measurements. In this paper, we used micropulse lidar measurements acquired from May 2003 to June 2004 to illustrate seasonal variations of AOD and ABL height in Hong Kong. On average, about 64% of monthly mean aerosol optical depths were contributed by aerosols within the mixing layer (with a maximum (similar to 76%) in November and a minimum (similar to 55%) in September) revealing the existence of large abundance of aerosols above ABL due to regional transport. The characteristics of seasonal averaged aerosol profiles over Hong Kong in the study period are presented to illustrate seasonal phenomena of aerosol transport and associated meteorological conditions. The correlation between AOD and surface extinction coefficient, as found, is generally poor (r(2) similar to 0.42) since elevated aerosol layers increase columnar aerosol abundance but not extinction at surface. The typical aerosol extinction profile in the ABL can be characterized by a low value near the surface and values increased with altitude reaching the top of ABL. When aerosol vertical profile is assumed, surface extinction coefficient can be derived from AOD using two algorithms, which are discussed in detail in this paper. Preliminary analysis showed that better estimates of the extinction coefficient at the ground level could be obtained using two-layer aerosol extinction profiles (r(2) similar to 0.78, slope similar to 0.82, and intercept similar to 0.15) than uniform profiles of extinction with height within the ABL (r(2) similar to 0.65, slope similar to 0.27, and intercept similar to 0.03). The improvement in correlation is promising on mapping satellite retrieved AOD to surface aerosol extinction coefficient for urban and regional environmental studies on air quality related issues.



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