Mishra, AK; Shibata, T (2012). Synergistic analyses of optical and microphysical properties of agricultural crop residue burning aerosols over the Indo-Gangetic Basin (IGB). ATMOSPHERIC ENVIRONMENT, 57, 205-218.
Agriculture crop residue burning is one of the important sources of trace gas emissions and aerosol loading over the Indo-Gangetic Basin (IGB). The present study deals with the spatial variability including the vertical structure of optical and microphysical properties of aerosols, during the crop residue burning season (October and November) of 2009 over the IGB. Increased number of fire counts observed by MODIS (MODerate resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) that is associated with high aerosol optical depth (MODIS-AOD > 0.7) and enhanced tropospheric columnar NO2 concentrations observed by OMI (Ozone Monitoring Instrument), suggests agriculture crop residue burning as a main source of aerosol loading over the IGB during October and November. PARASOL (Polarization and Anisotropy of Reflectances for Atmospheric Science coupled with Observations from a Lidar) observations show an increase in fine mode AOD (at 865 nm) from October (0.1-0.2) to November (0.2-0.3) over the IGB, which is well corroborated with MODIS observations. CALIOP (Cloud-Aerosol Lidar with Orthogonal Polarization) data shows the elevated aerosol plume (4.0-4.5 km) over the north-west IGB (associated with burning activities) that could have been caused by positive buoyancy through pyro-convection. However, large concentrations of aerosol were found below 1.0 km altitude. The averaged vertical structure of crop residue burning aerosols shows an exponential decrease with altitude (mean scale height similar to 1.44 +/- 0.20 km). Aerosol optical and microphysical properties coupled with backward air trajectories analyses at Kanpur indicated regional transport of biomass burning aerosols in a downwind direction from north-west IGB to south-east IGB. Aerosol classification, using AERONET (AErosol RObotic NETwork)-derived absorption properties coupled with size parameter (2006-2010) showed clear seasonal dependency of aerosol types which revealed the presence of biomass burning aerosols only during the crop residue burning season. The findings of this study will be further used for quantification of the properties of atmospheric brown clouds and their effects on global climate change. (C) 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.