Articles | Volume 10, issue 23
13 Dec 2010
 | 13 Dec 2010

Measurements and modelling of molecular iodine emissions, transport and photodestruction in the coastal region around Roscoff

R. J. Leigh, S. M. Ball, J. Whitehead, C. Leblanc, A. J. L. Shillings, A. S. Mahajan, H. Oetjen, J. D. Lee, C. E. Jones, J. R. Dorsey, M. Gallagher, R. L. Jones, J. M. C. Plane, P. Potin, and G. McFiggans

Abstract. Iodine emissions from the dominant six macroalgal species in the coastal regions around Roscoff, France, have been modelled to support the Reactive Halogens in the Marine Boundary Layer Experiment (RHaMBLe) undertaken in September 2006. A two-dimensional model is used to explore the relationship between geographically resolved regional emissions (based on maps of seaweed beds in the area and seaweed I2 emission rates previously measured in the laboratory) and in situ point and line measurements of I2 performed respectively by a broadband cavity ringdown spectroscopy (BBCRDS) instrument sited on the shoreline and a long-path differential optical absorption spectroscopy (LP-DOAS) instrument sampling over an extended light path to an off-shore island. The modelled point and line I2 concentrations compare quantitatively with BBCRDS and LP-DOAS measurements, and provide a link between emission fields and the different measurement geometries used to quantify atmospheric I2 concentrations during RHaMBLe. Total I2 emissions over the 100 km2 region around Roscoff are calculated to be 1.7×1019 molecules per second during the lowest tides.

During the night, the model replicates I2 concentrations up to 50 pptv measured along the LP-DOAS instrument's line of sight, and predicts spikes of several hundred pptv in certain conditions. Point I2 concentrations up to 50 pptv are also calculated at the measurement site, in broad agreement with the BBCRDS observations. Daytime measured concentrations of I2 at the site correlate with modelled production and transport processes. However substantial recycling of the photodissociated I2 is required for the model to quantitatively match measured concentrations. This result corroborates previous modelling of iodine and NOx chemistry in the semi-polluted marine boundary layer which proposed a mechanism for recycling I2 via the formation, transport and subsequent reactions of the IONO2 reservoir compound.

The methodology presented in this paper provides a tool for linking spatially distinct measurements to inhomogeneous and temporally varying emission fields.

Final-revised paper