Lewis, J; De Young, R; Ferrare, R; Chu, DA (2010). Comparison of summer and winter California central valley aerosol distributions from lidar and MODIS measurements. ATMOSPHERIC ENVIRONMENT, 44(35), 4510-4520.
Aerosol distributions from two aircraft lidar campaigns conducted in the California Central Valley are compared in order to identify seasonal variations. Aircraft lidar flights were conducted in June 2003 and February 2007. While the ground PM2.5 (particulate matter with diameter <= 2.5 mu m) concentration was highest in the winter, the aerosol optical depth (ADD) measured from the MODIS and lidar instruments was highest in the summer. A multiyear seasonal comparison shows that PM2.5 in the winter can exceed summer PM2.5 by 68%, while summer AOD from MODIS exceeds winter AOD by 29%. Warmer temperatures and wildfires in the summer produce elevated aerosol layers that are detected by satellite measurements, but not necessarily by surface particulate matter monitors. Temperature inversions, especially during the winter, contribute to higher PM2.5 measurements at the surface. Measurements of the mixing layer height from lidar instruments provide valuable information needed to understand the correlation between satellite measurements of AOD and in situ measurements of PM2.5. Lidar measurements also reflect the ammonium nitrate chemistry observed in the San Joaquin Valley, which may explain the discrepancy between the MODIS AOD and PM2.5 measurements. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.