Radiative Forcing and Stratospheric Warming of Pyrocumulonimbus Smoke Aerosols: First Modeling Results with Multisensor (EPIC, CALIPSO, and CATS) Views from Space
Journal Article - Open Access
NAVAL RESEARCH LAB WASHINGTON DC WASHINGTON United States
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Smoke particles can be injected by pyrocumulonimbus pyroCb in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere, but their effects on the radiative budget of the planet remain elusive. Here, by focusing on the record-setting Pacific Northwest pyroCb event of August 2017, we show with satellite-based estimates of pyroCb emissions and injection heights in a chemical transport model GEOS-Chem that pyroCb smoke particles can result in radiative forcing of similar to 0.02 Wm2 at the top of the atmosphere averaged globally in the 2 months following the event and up to 0.9 Kday heating in the Arctic upper troposphere and lower stratosphere. The modeled aerosol distributions agree with observations from satellites Earth Polychromatic Imaging Camera EPIC, Cloud-Aerosol Transport System CATS, and Cloud-Aerosol Lidar with Orthogonal Polarization CALTON, showing the hemispheric transport of pyroCb smoke aerosols with a lifetime of 5 months. Hence, warming by pyroCb aerosols can have similar temporal duration but opposite sign to the well-documented cooling of volcanic aerosols and be significant for climate prediction.
- Physical Chemistry
- Atmospheric Physics