Articles | Volume 8, issue 19
15 Oct 2008
 | 15 Oct 2008

Consistent simulation of bromine chemistry from the marine boundary layer to the stratosphere – Part 2: Bromocarbons

A. Kerkweg, P. Jöckel, N. Warwick, S. Gebhardt, C. A. M. Brenninkmeijer, and J. Lelieveld

Abstract. In this second part of a series of articles dedicated to a detailed analysis of bromine chemistry in the atmosphere we address one (out of two) dominant natural sources of reactive bromine. The two main source categories are the release of bromine from sea salt and the decomposition of bromocarbons by photolysis and reaction with OH. Here, we focus on C1-bromocarbons. We show that the atmospheric chemistry general circulation model ECHAM5/MESSy realistically simulates their emission, transport and decomposition from the boundary layer up to the mesosphere. We included oceanic emission fluxes of the short-lived bromocarbons CH2Br2, CH2ClBr, CHClBr2, CHCl2Br, CHBr3 and of CH3Br. The vertical profiles and the surface mixing ratios of the bromocarbons are in general agreement with the (few available) observations, especially in view of the limited information available and the consequent coarseness of the emission fields. For CHBr3, CHCl2Br and CHClBr2 photolysis is the most important degradation process in the troposphere. In contrast to this, tropospheric CH2Br2, CH3Br and CH2ClBr are more efficiently decomposed by reaction with OH. In the free troposphere approximately 40% of the C1-bromocarbons decompose by reaction with OH. Our results indicate that bromoform contributes substantial amounts of reactive bromine to the lower stratosphere and thus should not be neglected in stratospheric simulations.

Final-revised paper