Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres

Assessment of the performance of ECC-ozonesondes under quasi-flight conditions in the environmental simulation chamber: Insights from the Juelich Ozone Sonde Intercomparison Experiment (JOSIE)

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Abstract

[1] Since 1996, quality assurance experiments of electrochemical concentration cell (ECC) ozonesondes of two different model types (SPC-6A and ENSCI-Z) have been conducted in the environmental simulation facility at the Research Centre Juelich within the framework of the Juelich Ozone Sonde Intercomparison Experiment (JOSIE). The experiments have shown that the performance characteristics of the two ECC-sonde types can be significantly different, even when operated under the same conditions. Particularly above 20 km the ENSCI-Z sonde tends to measure 5–10% more ozone than the SPC-6A sonde. Below 20 km the differences are 5% or less, but appear to show some differences with year of manufacture. There is a significant difference in the ozone readings when sondes of the same type are operated with different cathode sensing solutions. Testing the most commonly used sensing solutions showed that for each ECC-manufacturer type the use of 1.0% KI and full buffer gives 5% larger ozone values compared with the use of 0.5% KI and half buffer, and as much as 10% larger values compared with 2.0% KI and no buffer. For ozone sounding stations performing long term measurements this means that changing the sensing solution type or ECC-sonde type can easily introduce a change of ±5% or more in their records, affecting determination of ozone trends. Standardization of operating procedures for ECC-sondes yields a precision better than ±(3–5)% and an accuracy of about ±(5–10)% up to 30 km altitude.

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