What does this program measure?
The purpose of this program is to measure important trace gases using an Infrared (IR) absorption spectrum. Automated observations of solar IR spectra using a FTIR spectrometer are conducted daily from Monday to Friday. Ozone and other stratospheric chemicals (such as Nitric Acid - HNO3, Hydrogen Chloride - HCL, etc.) are measured in parts-per-million (ppm) as a function of altitude & total column amount.
How does this program work?
A computer-automated system observes the solar infrared spectra using a Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrometer (FTIR). FTIR Spectroscopy looks at molecular absorptions in direct sunlight. These measurements occur 5 times per week at MLO.
Why is this research important?
Primarily in order to monitor the chemistry of the stratosphere. Looking at Ozone depleting compounds, greenhouse gas & pollutant transport.
Are there any trends in the data?
Chlorofluorocarbons (CFC’s) are stabilizing. Pollutant transportation of biomass burning in China is being monitored.
How does this program fit into the big picture?
What is it's role in global climate change?
This project is part of the international NDACC network, which monitors the upper atmosphere & provides baseline data on its health & information to modelers.
Comments and References
NDACC FTIR Monitoring (Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy)