1Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement/IPSL,CEA-CNRS-UVSQ, Gif-sur-Yvette, France
2Centre Nationale des recherches Météorologiques, Toulouse, France
3Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
4Department of Meteorology, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania, USA
Abstract. We investigate the ability of a mesoscale model to reconstruct CO2 fluxes at regional scale. Formally, we estimate the reduction of error for a CO2 flux inversion at 8 km resolution in the South West of France, during four days of the CarboEurope Regional Experiment Strategy (CERES) in spring 2005. Measurements from two towers and two airplanes are available for this campaign. The lagrangian particle dispersion model LPDM was coupled to the non-hydrostatic model Meso-NH and integrated in a matrix inversion framework. Impacts of aircraft and tower measurements are quantified separately and together. We find that the configuration with both towers and aircraft is able to significantly reduce uncertainties on the 4-day averaged CO2 fluxes over about half of the 300×300 km2 domain. Most of this reduction comes from the tower measurements, even though the impact of aircraft measurements remains noticeable. Imperfect knowledge of boundary conditions does not significantly impact the error reduction for surface fluxes. We test alternative strategies to improve the impact of aircraft measurements and find that most information comes from measurements inside the boundary layer. We find that there would be a large improvement in error reduction if we could improve our ability to model nocturnal concentrations at tower sites.