Validation of Halogen Occultation Experiment CH4 measurements from the UARS
Article first published online: 21 SEP 2012
Copyright 1996 by the American Geophysical Union.
Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres (1984–2012)
Volume 101, Issue D6, pages 10183–10203, 30 April 1996
How to Cite
1996), Validation of Halogen Occultation Experiment CH4 measurements from the UARS, J. Geophys. Res., 101(D6), 10183–10203, doi:10.1029/95JD02736., et al. (
- Issue published online: 21 SEP 2012
- Article first published online: 21 SEP 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 19 AUG 1995
- Manuscript Received: 4 NOV 1994
Global distributions of CH4 in the mesosphere and stratosphere have been measured continuously since October 11, 1991, by the Halogen Occultation Experiment (HALOE) onboard the UARS. CH4 mixing ratio is obtained using the gas filter correlation technique operating in the 3.3-μm region. Since measurements are made during solar occultation in the 57° inclination orbit, data are collected 15 times daily for both sunrises and sunsets. This provides coverage of one hemisphere in a month period. One complete hemispheric sweep (from equator to ∼80° latitude) is made during the spring and summer seasons of two hemispheres, and a partial sweep (from equator to around 50° latitude) is made during the fall and winter seasons of two hemispheres. HALOE CH4 measurements are validated using direct comparisons with correlative data and internal consistency checks using other HALOE-measured tracers, HF, and aerosols. It is estimated for the 0.3- to 50-mbar region that the total error, including systematic and random components, is less than 15% and that the precision is better than 7%. The CH4 gas filter channel does not depend significantly on the Pinatubo aerosol extinction. An experimentally accurate measurement of CH4 is very important because CH4 is a primary interfering gas in the HALOE HCl channel and, subsequently, can cause HCl measurement error. Simultaneous measurements of CH4 and other HALOE species (O3, H2O, NO, NO2, HCl, HF, and aerosol extinction coefficients) provide important information on atmospheric dynamic and chemical processes, since CH4 can be used as a tracer and an indicator of atmospheric transport processes. Several new pieces of information on previously unreported HALOE-observed features are also presented.