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McGowan, HA, Clark, A (2008). "A vertical profile of PM10 dust concentrations measured during a regional dust event identified by MODIS Terra, western Queensland, Australia". JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH-EARTH SURFACE, 113(F2), F02S03.

Accurate determination of the spatiotemporal properties of dust plumes and their dust concentrations is essential for calibration of satellite products and the initialization and validation of numerical models that simulate the physical properties and affects of dust events. In this paper, we present a 500 m vertical profile of PM10 dust concentrations measured during a regional dust event in western Queensland, Australia. PM10 dust concentrations within the haze were found to be > 20 times background ambient values and decreased with height following an exponential function. We apply an over-land algorithm to MODIS Terra satellite images of the dust haze to enhance its visual appearance against the bright land surface and define its size. In conjunction with the measured attenuation of dust concentrations with height we calculate the PM10 dust load of the plume to be similar to 60% of that which would have been calculated assuming a constant dust concentration up to the dust ceiling height. Results extend previous findings from tower-based studies made close to the surface and confirm that atmospheric dust concentrations decrease rapidly with increasing height, thereby enabling more accurate calculation of atmospheric dust loads during synoptic-scale dust outbreaks.



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