The contribution of natural and anthropogenic very short-lived species to stratospheric bromine
- 1Institute for Climate and Atmospheric Science, School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK
- 2School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, USA
- 3Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, University of Miami, Miami, USA
- 4Earth System Research Laboratory, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Boulder, Colorado, USA
Abstract. We have used a global three-dimensional chemical transport model to quantify the impact of the very short-lived substances (VSLS) CHBr3, CH2Br2, CHBr2Cl, CHBrCl2, CH2BrCl and C2H5-Br on the bromine budget of the stratosphere. Atmospheric observations of these gases allow constraints on surface mixing ratios that, when incorporated into our model, contribute ~4.9–5.2 parts per trillion (ppt) of inorganic bromine (Bry) to the stratosphere. Of this total, ~76 % comes from naturally-emitted CHBr3 and CH2Br2. The remaining species individually contribute modest amounts. However, their accumulated total accounts for up to ~1.2 ppt of the supply and thus should not be ignored. We have compared modelled tropical profiles of a range of VSLS with observations from the recent 2009 NSF HIPPO-1 aircraft campaign. Modelled profiles agree reasonably well with observations from the surface to the lower tropical tropopause layer.
We have also considered the poorly studied anthropogenic VSLS, C2H5Br, CH2BrCH2Br, n-C3H7Br and i-C3H7Br. We find the local atmospheric lifetime of these species in the tropical tropopause layer are ~183, 603, 39 and 49 days, respectively. These species, particularly C2H5Br and CH2BrCH2Br, would thus be important carriers of bromine to the stratosphere if emissions were to increase substantially. Our model shows ~70–73 % and ~80–85 % of bromine from these species in the tropical boundary layer can reach the lower stratosphere.