Articles | Volume 12, issue 17
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 12, 8237–8256, 2012
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 12, 8237–8256, 2012

Research article 13 Sep 2012

Research article | 13 Sep 2012

GEM-AQ/EC, an on-line global multi-scale chemical weather modelling system: model development and evaluation of global aerosol climatology

S. L. Gong1,2, D. Lavoué1,3, T. L. Zhao1, P. Huang1, and J. W. Kaminski4 S. L. Gong et al.
  • 1Air Quality Research Division, Science & Technology Branch, Environment Canada, 4905 Dufferin Street, Toronto, Ontario M3H 5T4, Canada
  • 2Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences, China Meteorological Administration (CMA), Beijing 100081, China
  • 3DL Modeling & Research, Brampton, Ontario, Canada
  • 4Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, York University, 4700 Keele Street, Toronto, Ontario, M3J 1P3, Canada

Abstract. A global air quality modeling system GEM-AQ/EC was developed by implementing tropospheric chemistry and aerosol processes on-line into the Global Environmental Multiscale weather prediction model – GEM. Due to the multi-scale features of the GEM, the integrated model, GEM-AQ/EC, is able to investigate chemical weather at scales from global to urban domains. The current chemical mechanism is comprised of 50 gas-phase species, 116 chemical and 19 photolysis reactions, and is complemented by a sectional aerosol module CAM (The Canadian Aerosol Module) with 5 aerosols types: sulphate, black carbon, organic carbon, sea-salt and soil dust. Monthly emission inventories of black carbon and organic carbon from boreal and temperate vegetation fires were assembled using the most reliable areas burned datasets by countries, from statistical databases and derived from remote sensing products of 1995–2004. The model was run for ten years from from 1995–2004 with re-analyzed meteorology on a global uniform 1° × 1° horizontal resolution domain and 28 hybrid levels extending up to 10 hPa. The simulating results were compared with various observations including surface network around the globe and satellite data. Regional features of global aerosols are reasonably captured including emission, surface concentrations and aerosol optical depth. For various types of aerosols, satisfactory correlations were achieved between modeled and observed with some degree of systematic bias possibly due to large uncertainties in the emissions used in this study. A global distribution of natural aerosol contributions to the total aerosols is obtained and compared with observations.

Final-revised paper