Articles | Volume 15, issue 22
Research article
18 Nov 2015
Research article |  | 18 Nov 2015

Quantifying sources of black carbon in western North America using observationally based analysis and an emission tagging technique in the Community Atmosphere Model

R. Zhang, H. Wang, D. A. Hegg, Y. Qian, S. J. Doherty, C. Dang, P.-L. Ma, P. J. Rasch, and Q. Fu

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Source attribution of insoluble light-absorbing particles in seasonal snow across northern China
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Subject: Aerosols | Research Activity: Atmospheric Modelling | Altitude Range: Troposphere | Science Focus: Physics (physical properties and processes)
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Cited articles

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Chow, J. C., Watson, J. G., Pritchett, L. C., Pierson, W. R., Frazier, C. A., and Purcell, R. G.: The DRI Thermal/Optical Reflectance carbon analysis system: Description, evaluation and applications in US air quality studies, Atmos. Environ. A, 27, 1185–1201, 1993.
Chow, J. C., Watson, J. G., Chen, L.-W. A., Chang, M. C. O., Robinson, N. F., Trimble, D., and Kohl, S. D.: The IMPROVE_A temperature protocol for thermal/optical carbon analysis: Maintaining consistency with a long-term database, J. Air Waste Manage. Assoc., 57, 1014–1023, 2007.
Short summary
We use a global climate model with an explicit source tagging technique to quantify contributions of emissions from various geographical regions and sectors to BC in North America. Model results are evaluated against measurements of near-surface and in-snow BC. We found strong spatial variations of BC and its radiative forcing that can be quantitatively attributed to the various source origins, and also identified a significant source of BC in snow that is likely missing in most climate models.
Final-revised paper