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Retrieval of stratospheric aerosol distributions from SCIAMACHY limb measurements: first steps and methodology

Florian Ernst(1), Christian von Savigny(1), Alexei Rozanov(1), Vladimir Rozanov(1), Heinrich Bovensmann(1) and John P. Burrows(1)

(1) IUP University of Bremen, Otto-Hahn-Allee 1, 28359 Bremen, Germany

Abstract

Stratospheric aerosols play an important role in the atmospheric global radiation budget. A large error in atmospheric trace gas retrieval, especially ozone, is based on a lack of knowledge of accurate aerosol concentrations. SAGE I – III provided a 25-year record of stratospheric aerosols by means of solar occultation technique. Since the demise of SAGE II and III in 2005/2006, the continuity of this stratospheric aerosol data set is jeopardized. Goal of this work is to demonstrate that aerosol extinction profiles can be retrieved from SCIAMACHY limb scatter measurements to sustain the series. Since the eruption of Pinatubo in 1991 was the last large source of volcanic aerosols in stratosphere, we have now the opportunity to retrieve background aerosol profiles. The radiative transfer model SCIATRAN is used to derive aerosol extinction profiles and size distributions for SCIAMACHY limb data. First steps, the algorithm and sensitivity studies are presented here.