Articles | Volume 20, issue 9
Research article
13 May 2020
Research article |  | 13 May 2020

The role of plume-scale processes in long-term impacts of aircraft emissions

Thibaud M. Fritz, Sebastian D. Eastham, Raymond L. Speth, and Steven R. H. Barrett

Related authors

Background nitrogen dioxide (NO2) over the United States and its implications for satellite observations and trends: effects of nitrate photolysis, aircraft, and open fires
Ruijun Dang, Daniel J. Jacob, Viral Shah, Sebastian D. Eastham, Thibaud M. Fritz, Loretta J. Mickley, Tianjia Liu, Yi Wang, and Jun Wang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 23, 6271–6284,,, 2023
Short summary
Nitrogen oxides in the free troposphere: implications for tropospheric oxidants and the interpretation of satellite NO2 measurements
Viral Shah, Daniel J. Jacob, Ruijun Dang, Lok N. Lamsal, Sarah A. Strode, Stephen D. Steenrod, K. Folkert Boersma, Sebastian D. Eastham, Thibaud M. Fritz, Chelsea Thompson, Jeff Peischl, Ilann Bourgeois, Ilana B. Pollack, Benjamin A. Nault, Ronald C. Cohen, Pedro Campuzano-Jost, Jose L. Jimenez, Simone T. Andersen, Lucy J. Carpenter, Tomás Sherwen, and Mat J. Evans
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 23, 1227–1257,,, 2023
Short summary
Implementation and evaluation of the GEOS-Chem chemistry module version 13.1.2 within the Community Earth System Model v2.1
Thibaud M. Fritz, Sebastian D. Eastham, Louisa K. Emmons, Haipeng Lin, Elizabeth W. Lundgren, Steve Goldhaber, Steven R. H. Barrett, and Daniel J. Jacob
Geosci. Model Dev., 15, 8669–8704,,, 2022
Short summary
Harmonized Emissions Component (HEMCO) 3.0 as a versatile emissions component for atmospheric models: application in the GEOS-Chem, NASA GEOS, WRF-GC, CESM2, NOAA GEFS-Aerosol, and NOAA UFS models
Haipeng Lin, Daniel J. Jacob, Elizabeth W. Lundgren, Melissa P. Sulprizio, Christoph A. Keller, Thibaud M. Fritz, Sebastian D. Eastham, Louisa K. Emmons, Patrick C. Campbell, Barry Baker, Rick D. Saylor, and Raffaele Montuoro
Geosci. Model Dev., 14, 5487–5506,,, 2021
Short summary

Related subject area

Subject: Gases | Research Activity: Atmospheric Modelling and Data Analysis | Altitude Range: Troposphere | Science Focus: Chemistry (chemical composition and reactions)
The atmospheric oxidizing capacity in China – Part 1: Roles of different photochemical processes
Jianing Dai, Guy P. Brasseur, Mihalis Vrekoussis, Maria Kanakidou, Kun Qu, Yijuan Zhang, Hongliang Zhang, and Tao Wang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 23, 14127–14158,,, 2023
Short summary
Benefits of net-zero policies for future ozone pollution in China
Zhenze Liu, Oliver Wild, Ruth M. Doherty, Fiona M. O'Connor, and Steven T. Turnock
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 23, 13755–13768,,, 2023
Short summary
Simulating impacts on UK air quality from net-zero forest planting scenarios
Gemma Purser, Mathew R. Heal, Edward J. Carnell, Stephen Bathgate, Julia Drewer, James I. L. Morison, and Massimo Vieno
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 23, 13713–13733,,, 2023
Short summary
Understanding offshore high-ozone events during TRACER-AQ 2021 in Houston: insights from WRF–CAMx photochemical modeling
Wei Li, Yuxuan Wang, Xueying Liu, Ehsan Soleimanian, Travis Griggs, James Flynn, and Paul Walter
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 23, 13685–13699,,, 2023
Short summary
Opinion: Establishing a science-into-policy process for tropospheric ozone assessment
Richard G. Derwent, David D. Parrish, and Ian C. Faloona
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 23, 13613–13623,,, 2023
Short summary

Cited articles

Airbus: Global market forecast 2017–2036, available at: (last access: 10 April 2019), 2017. a
Beard, K. V. and Ochs III, H. T.: Collisions between small precipitation drops, Part II: Formulas for coalescence, temporary coalescence, and satellites, J. Atmos. Sci., 52, 3977–3996, 1995. a
Boeing: Commercial Market Outlook 2018-2037, available at: (last access: 10 April 2019), 2017. a
Brasseur, G., Cox, R., Hauglustaine, D., Isaksen, I., Lelieveld, J., Lister, D., Sausen, R., Schumann, U., Wahner, A., and Wiesen, P.: European scientific assessment of the atmospheric effects of aircraft emissions, Atmos. Environ., 32, 2329–2418, 1998. a
Brasseur, G. P., Müller, J.-F., and Granier, C.: Atmospheric impact of NOx emissions by subsonic aircraft: A three-dimensional model study, J. Geophys. Res.-Atmos., 101, 1423–1428, 1996. a
Short summary
Aircraft exhaust drives formation of ozone and is a dominant anthropogenic influence in the upper troposphere. These impacts are mitigated by non-linear chemistry inside the aircraft plume, which cuts off part of the ozone production pathway and reduces the long-term impact of aircraft in a way which is not captured by current models. The ice clouds which form in aircraft exhaust ("contrails") also play a role, converting emitted nitrogen oxides into more stable forms such as nitric acid.
Final-revised paper