Articles | Volume 21, issue 22
Research article
 | Highlight paper
17 Nov 2021
Research article | Highlight paper |  | 17 Nov 2021

A sulfur dioxide Covariance-Based Retrieval Algorithm (COBRA): application to TROPOMI reveals new emission sources

Nicolas Theys, Vitali Fioletov, Can Li, Isabelle De Smedt, Christophe Lerot, Chris McLinden, Nickolay Krotkov, Debora Griffin, Lieven Clarisse, Pascal Hedelt, Diego Loyola, Thomas Wagner, Vinod Kumar, Antje Innes, Roberto Ribas, François Hendrick, Jonas Vlietinck, Hugues Brenot, and Michel Van Roozendael


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Short summary
We present a new algorithm to retrieve sulfur dioxide from space UV measurements. We apply the technique to high-resolution TROPOMI measurements and demonstrate the high sensitivity of the approach to weak SO2 emissions worldwide with an unprecedented limit of detection of 8 kt yr−1. This result has broad implications for atmospheric science studies dealing with improving emission inventories and identifying and quantifying missing sources, in the context of air quality and climate.
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