Eyjafjallajökull volcano plume particle-type characterization from space-based multi-angle imaging 1Earth Science Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt MD 20771, USA
22 Oct 2012
2Science Systems and Applications Inc., Lanham MD 20706, USA
Received: 12 Jun 2012 – Published in Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss.: 19 Jul 2012Abstract. The Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) Research Aerosol algorithm
makes it possible to study individual aerosol plumes in considerable detail.
From the MISR data for two optically thick, near-source plumes of the spring
2010 Eyjafjallajökull volcano eruption, we map aerosol optical depth
(AOD) gradients and changing aerosol particle types with this algorithm;
several days downwind, we identify the occurrence of volcanic ash particles
and retrieve AOD, demonstrating the extent and the limits of ash detection
and mapping capability with the multi-angle, multi-spectral imaging data.
Retrieved volcanic plume AOD and particle microphysical properties are
distinct from background values near-source, as well as for over-water cases
several days downwind. The results also provide some indication that as they
evolve, plume particles brighten, and average particle size decreases. Such
detailed mapping offers context for suborbital plume observations having
much more limited sampling. The MISR Standard aerosol product identified
similar trends in plume properties as the Research algorithm, though with
much smaller differences compared to background, and it does not resolve
plume structure. Better optical analogs of non-spherical volcanic ash, and
coincident suborbital data to validate the satellite retrieval results, are
the factors most important for further advancing the remote sensing of
volcanic ash plumes from space.
Revised: 28 Sep 2012 – Accepted: 28 Sep 2012 – Published: 22 Oct 2012
Citation: Kahn, R. A. and Limbacher, J.: Eyjafjallajökull volcano plume particle-type characterization from space-based multi-angle imaging, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 12, 9459-9477, doi:10.5194/acp-12-9459-2012, 2012.