Articles | Volume 16, issue 21
Research article
01 Nov 2016
Research article |  | 01 Nov 2016

Observing atmospheric formaldehyde (HCHO) from space: validation and intercomparison of six retrievals from four satellites (OMI, GOME2A, GOME2B, OMPS) with SEAC4RS aircraft observations over the southeast US

Lei Zhu, Daniel J. Jacob, Patrick S. Kim, Jenny A. Fisher, Karen Yu, Katherine R. Travis, Loretta J. Mickley, Robert M. Yantosca, Melissa P. Sulprizio, Isabelle De Smedt, Gonzalo González Abad, Kelly Chance, Can Li, Richard Ferrare, Alan Fried, Johnathan W. Hair, Thomas F. Hanisco, Dirk Richter, Amy Jo Scarino, James Walega, Petter Weibring, and Glenn M. Wolfe
Short summary
HCHO column data are widely used as a proxy for VOCs emissions, but validation of the data has been extremely limited. We use accurate aircraft observations to validate and intercompare 6 HCHO retrievals with GEOS-Chem as the intercomparison platform. Retrievals are interconsistent in spatial variability over the SE US and in daily variability, but are biased low by 20–51 %. Our work supports the use of HCHO column as a quantitative proxy for isoprene emission after correction of the low bias.
Final-revised paper