Editor's Choice Articles

Editor’s Choice articles are based on recommendations by the scientific editors of MDPI journals from around the world. Editors select a small number of articles recently published in the journal that they believe will be particularly interesting to authors, or important in this field. The aim is to provide a snapshot of some of the most exciting work published in the various research areas of the journal.

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Article
Evaluation of TROPOMI and OMI Tropospheric NO2 Products Using Measurements from MAX-DOAS and State-Controlled Stations in the Jiangsu Province of China
Atmosphere 2022, 13(6), 886; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13060886 - 30 May 2022
Abstract
The tropospheric vertical column density of NO2 (Trop NO2 VCD) can be obtained using satellite remote sensing, but it has been discovered that the Trop NO2 VCD is affected by uncertainties such as the cloud fraction, terrain reflectivity, and aerosol [...] Read more.
The tropospheric vertical column density of NO2 (Trop NO2 VCD) can be obtained using satellite remote sensing, but it has been discovered that the Trop NO2 VCD is affected by uncertainties such as the cloud fraction, terrain reflectivity, and aerosol optical depth. A certain error occurs in terms of data inversion accuracy, necessitating additional ground observation verification. This study uses surface NO2 mass concentrations from the China National Environmental Monitoring Center (CNEMC) sites in Jiangsu Province, China in 2019 and the Trop NO2 VCD measured by MAX-DOAS, respectively, to verify the Trop NO2 VCD product (daily and monthly average data), that comes from the TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI) and Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI). The results show that the spatial distributions of NO2 in TROPOMI and OMI exhibit a similar tendency and seasonality, showing the characteristics of being high in spring and winter and low in summer and autumn. On the whole, the concentration of NO2 in the south of Jiangsu Province is higher than that in the north. The Pearson correlation coefficient (r) between the monthly average TROPOMI VCD NO2 and the CNEMC NO2 mass concentration is 0.9, which is greater than the r (0.78) between OMI and CNEMC; the r (0.69) between TROPOMI and the MAX-DOAS VCD NO2 is greater than the r (0.59) between OMI and the MAX-DOAS. As such, the TROPOMI is better than the previous generation of OMI at representing the spatio-temporal distribution of NO2 in the regional scope. On the other hand, the uncertainties of the satellite products provided in this study can constrain regional air quality forecasting models and top-down emission inventory estimation. Full article
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Article
Response of Population Canopy Color Gradation Skewed Distribution Parameters of the RGB Model to Micrometeorology Environment in Begonia Fimbristipula Hance
Atmosphere 2022, 13(6), 890; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13060890 - 30 May 2022
Abstract
The high quality and efficient production of greenhouse vegetation depend on micrometeorology environmental adjusting such as system warming and illumination supplement. In order to improve the quantity, quality, and efficiency of greenhouse vegetation, it is necessary to figure out the relationship between the [...] Read more.
The high quality and efficient production of greenhouse vegetation depend on micrometeorology environmental adjusting such as system warming and illumination supplement. In order to improve the quantity, quality, and efficiency of greenhouse vegetation, it is necessary to figure out the relationship between the crop growth conditions and environmental meteorological factors, which could give constructive suggestions for precise control of the greenhouse environment and reduce the running costs. The parameters from the color information of the plant canopy reflect the internal physiological conditions, thus, the RGB model has been widely used in the color analysis of digital pictures of leaves. We take photographs of Begonia Fimbristipula Hance (BFH) growing in the greenhouse at a fixed time every day and measure the meteorological factors. The results showed that the color scale for the single leaf, single plant, and the populated canopy of the BFH photographs all have skewed cumulative distribution histograms. The color gradation skewness-distribution (CGSD) parameters of the RGB model were increased from 4 to 20 after the skewness analysis, which greatly expanded the canopy leaf color information and could simultaneously describe the depth and distribution characteristics of the canopy color. The 20 CGSD parameters were sensitive to the micrometeorology factors, especially to the radiation and temperature accumulation. The multiple regression models of mean, median, mode, and kurtosis parameters to microclimate factors were established, and the spatial models of skewness parameters were optimized. The models can well explain the response of canopy color to microclimate factors and can be used to monitor the variation of plant canopy color under different micrometeorology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agrometeorology)
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Article
Impact of Stratosphere on Cold Air Outbreak: Observed Evidence by CrIS on SNPP and Its Comparison with Models
Atmosphere 2022, 13(6), 876; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13060876 - 28 May 2022
Abstract
A cold air outbreak (CAO) is an extreme weather phenomenon that has significant social and economic impacts over a large region of the midlatitudes. However, the dynamical mechanism of the occurrence and evolution of CAO events, particularly the role of the stratosphere, is [...] Read more.
A cold air outbreak (CAO) is an extreme weather phenomenon that has significant social and economic impacts over a large region of the midlatitudes. However, the dynamical mechanism of the occurrence and evolution of CAO events, particularly the role of the stratosphere, is not well understood. Through an analysis of one extreme CAO episode that occurred on 27–31 January 2019 across much of the US Midwest, this study examined its thermodynamic structure and the impact of stratospheric downward transport using the single-field-view (SFOV) satellite products (with a spatial resolution of ~14 km at nadir) from the Cross-track Infrared Sounder (CrIS) onboard Suomi National Polar-Orbiting Partnership (SNPP) in conjunction with MERRA-2 and ERA-5 reanalysis products. It is found that along the path of cold air transport, particularly near the coldest surface center, there exists a large enhancement of O3, deep tropopause folding, significant downward transport of stratospheric dry air, and a warm center above the tropopause. The upper warm center can be observed directly using the brightness temperature (BT) of CrIS stratospheric sounding channels. While similar large-scale patterns of temperature (T), relative humidity (RH), and ozone (O3) are captured from CrIS, MERRA-2, and ERA-5 products, it is found that, in the regions impacted by CAO, MERRA-2 has a thicker dry layer under the tropopause (with the difference of RH up to ~10%) and the total column ozone (TCO) from ERA-5 has a relatively large positive bias of 2.8 ± 2.8% compared to that measured by Ozone Mapping and Profiler Suite (OMPS). This study provides some observational evidence from CrIS that confirm the impact of the stratosphere on CAO through downward transport and demonstrates the value of the SFOV retrieval products for CAO dynamic transport study and model evaluation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Technologies in Satellite Observations)
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Article
Versatile Modelling of Extreme Surges in Connection with Large-Scale Circulation Drivers
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 850; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050850 - 23 May 2022
Abstract
In this article, we investigate the dependence of extreme surges on the North Atlantic weather regime variability across different timescales using the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Scandinavian blocking (SCAND) indices. The analysis was done using time series of surges along the North [...] Read more.
In this article, we investigate the dependence of extreme surges on the North Atlantic weather regime variability across different timescales using the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Scandinavian blocking (SCAND) indices. The analysis was done using time series of surges along the North French Coast, covering long time periods (43 to 172 years of data). Time series that exhibited gaps were filled using linear interpolation to allow spectral analyses to be conducted. First, a continuous wavelet analysis on monthly maxima surges in the North French Coast was conducted to identify the multi-timescale variability. Second, a wavelet coherence analysis and maximum overlap discrete wavelet transform (MODWT) were used to study the timescale-dependent relationships between maxima surges and NAO or SCAND. Finally, NAO and SCAND were tested as physical covariates for a nonstationary generalized extreme value (GEV) distribution to fit monthly maxima surge series. Specific low-frequency variabilities characterizing these indices (extracted using MODWT) were also used as covariates to determine whether such specific variabilities would allow for even better GEV fitting. The results reveal common multi-annual timescales of variability between monthly maxima surge time series along the North French coasts: ~2–3 years, ~5–7 years, and ~12–17 years. These modes of variability were found to be mainly induced by the NAO and the SCAND. We identified a greater influence of the NAO on the monthly maxima surges of the westernmost stations (Brest, Cherbourg, Le Havre), while the SCAND showed a greater influence on the northernmost station (Dunkirk). This shows that the physical climate effects at multi-annual scales are manifested differently between the Atlantic/English Channel and the North Sea regions influenced by NAO and SCAND, respectively. Finally, the introduction of these two climate indices was found to clearly enhance GEV models as well as a few timescales of these indices. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Multi-Hazard Risk Assessment)
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Article
Dual-Polarization Radar Observations of the Evolution of a Supercell Tornado and Analysis of the Echo Mechanisms
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 797; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050797 - 13 May 2022
Abstract
To gain a deeper understanding of the structural and evolutionary characteristics of supercell tornadoes that occurred in eastern China on 14 May 2021, observations from the S-band dual-polarization radars, soundings and other instruments are used to investigate the evolutionary process of the tornado [...] Read more.
To gain a deeper understanding of the structural and evolutionary characteristics of supercell tornadoes that occurred in eastern China on 14 May 2021, observations from the S-band dual-polarization radars, soundings and other instruments are used to investigate the evolutionary process of the tornado formation by the mergering and strengthening of supercell storms. The results are described as follows. The updraft by upper divergence and vertical thermal instability induced by the cold source at the tropopause provided the environmental conditions suitable for tornado formation. The tornado event involved three storm merger processes, each of which was associated with an increase in the echo intensity, vertical rising speed, and vertical vorticity of the supercell. Furthermore, during the last merger, the merging of the two vortices resulted in the reduction of the rotation radius of the new vortex, which also provided a favorable condition for tornadogenesis. A schematic was proposed to describe storm mergers. The characteristics of the velocity spectrum width were indicative of the occurrence and evolution of the tornado in this case. During the tornado stage, distinct polarimetric variable signatures (e.g., a tornado debris signature and a differential reflectivity arc) and radial velocity signatures (i.e., a tornadic vortex signature) were observed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Atmospheric Techniques, Instruments, and Modeling)
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Article
European Grid Dataset of Actual Evapotranspiration, Water Availability and Effective Precipitation
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 772; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050772 - 10 May 2022
Abstract
The sustainability of a territory is closely related to its resources. Due to climate change, the most precious natural resource, water, has been negatively affected by climatic conditions in terms of quantity and quality. CLIMAT datasets of 1 km2 spatial resolution were [...] Read more.
The sustainability of a territory is closely related to its resources. Due to climate change, the most precious natural resource, water, has been negatively affected by climatic conditions in terms of quantity and quality. CLIMAT datasets of 1 km2 spatial resolution were used and processed in the ArcGIS environment to generate maps of actual evapotranspiration, water availability, and effective precipitation for the periods of 1961–1990 (1990s), 2011–2040 (2020s), and 2041–2070 (2050s). The product is of paramount importance for the analysis of the actual situation in Europe indicating high water availability in the Alps Range, the Carpathians Mountains, Northern European countries, and the British Islands. On the other hand, low water availability has been evidenced in the Southern and Eastern European areas. For the future period (2050s), the monthly potential evapotranspiration is expected to increase by 30%. The climate models also show an increase in the actual evapotranspiration between past and future periods by 40%. The changes in water availability and effective precipitation between the past (1990s) and future (2050s) indicate decreases of 10%. The most affected areas by climate change are located within the Mediterranean areas, the Iberian Peninsula, and Eastern Europe. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Climatology)
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Article
Density Estimation of Fog in Image Based on Dark Channel Prior
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 710; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050710 - 29 Apr 2022
Abstract
This paper proposes a method and an original index for the estimation of fog density using images or videos. The proposed method had the advantages of convenient operation and low costs for applications in automatic driving and environmental monitoring. The index was constructed [...] Read more.
This paper proposes a method and an original index for the estimation of fog density using images or videos. The proposed method had the advantages of convenient operation and low costs for applications in automatic driving and environmental monitoring. The index was constructed based on a dark channel map and the pseudo-edge details of the foggy image. The effectiveness of the fog density index was demonstrated and validated through experiments on the two existing open datasets. The experimental results showed that the presented index could correctly estimate the fog density of images: (1) the estimated fog density value was consistent with the corresponding label in the Color Hazy Image Database (CHIC) in terms of rank order; (2) the estimated fog density level was consistent with the corresponding label in the Cityscapes database and the accuracy reached as high as 0.9812; (3) the proposed index could be used to evaluate the performance of a video defogging algorithm in terms of residual fog. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Atmospheric Techniques, Instruments, and Modeling)
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Article
Aerosol Optical Thickness Retrieval in Presence of Cloud: Application to S3A/SLSTR Observations
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 691; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050691 - 26 Apr 2022
Abstract
The Combined Inversion of Surface and AeRosols (CISAR) algorithm for the joint retrieval of surface and aerosol single scattering properties has been further developed in order to extend the retrieval to clouds and overcome the need for an external cloud mask. Pixels located [...] Read more.
The Combined Inversion of Surface and AeRosols (CISAR) algorithm for the joint retrieval of surface and aerosol single scattering properties has been further developed in order to extend the retrieval to clouds and overcome the need for an external cloud mask. Pixels located in the transition zone between pure cloud and pure aerosol are often discarded by both aerosol and cloud algorithms, despite being essential for studying aerosol–cloud interactions, which still represent the largest source of uncertainty in climate predictions. The proposed approach aims at filling this gap and deepening the understanding of aerosol properties in cloudy environments. The new CISAR version is applied to Sentinel-3A/SLSTR observations and evaluated against different satellite products and ground measurements. The spatial coverage is greatly improved with respect to algorithms processing only pixels flagged as clear sky by the SLSTR cloud mask. The continuous retrieval of aerosol properties without any safety zone around clouds opens new possibilities for studying aerosol properties in cloudy environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Atmospheric Aerosol Optical Properties)
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Article
Influence of the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation on Super Cyclone Activities over the Bay of Bengal during the Primary Cyclone Season
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 685; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050685 - 25 Apr 2022
Abstract
An obvious interdecadal change can be measured in the super cyclones (SCs, categories 4 and 5) that occur from October to November over the Bay of Bengal (BoB). This change may be modulated by the interdecadal Pacific oscillation (IPO). A La Niña-like difference [...] Read more.
An obvious interdecadal change can be measured in the super cyclones (SCs, categories 4 and 5) that occur from October to November over the Bay of Bengal (BoB). This change may be modulated by the interdecadal Pacific oscillation (IPO). A La Niña-like difference between the 1977–1998 (IP1) and 1999–2014 (IP2) periods forced a local Hadley circulation in the eastern tropical Indian Ocean by strengthening the Walker circulation, which caused plummeting upper-level temperatures and ultimately created favorable thermodynamic conditions to enhance the cyclone intensity. Meanwhile, an equatorial downwelling Kelvin wave caused by heating and westerly wind differences entered the BoB rim along the coast and aptly intensified the cyclone, such that the downwelling Kevin wave and Rossby wave generated by its reflection deepened the thermocline in the BoB. The favorable atmospheric and oceanic conditions in IP2 jointly and preferentially cause far more SC activities from October to November over the BoB compared to IP1. Full article
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Article
A Climatology of Mesoscale Convective Systems in Northwest Mexico during the North American Monsoon
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 665; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050665 - 22 Apr 2022
Abstract
Mesoscale Convective Systems (MCS) may vary greatly with respect to their morphology, propagation mechanism, intensity, and under which synoptic-scale conditions as a function of topographic complexity. In this study, we develop a long-term climatology of MCS during the North American Monsoon focusing on [...] Read more.
Mesoscale Convective Systems (MCS) may vary greatly with respect to their morphology, propagation mechanism, intensity, and under which synoptic-scale conditions as a function of topographic complexity. In this study, we develop a long-term climatology of MCS during the North American Monsoon focusing on MCS morphology, lifecycle, and intensity as well as possible propagation mechanisms. We employ an MCS tracking and classification technique based on 23 years (1995 to 2017) of GOES IR satellite data. MCS intensity is also gauged with 7 years (2011 to 2017) of Vaisala GLD360 lightning data and, finally, monthly and interannual variability in synoptic conditions are examined with ERA5 reanalysis data. Our results based on 1594 identified MCS reveal that 98% are morphologically classified as Persistent Elongated Convective Systems. During the 23 summers (June through September) observed, the number of MCS varied considerably, averaging 70 MCS with minimum of 41 and maximum of 94. MCS typically have an average duration of around 8 h ± with a 2 h standard deviation. Propagation speeds, estimated with Hovmöller diagrams in addition to MCS centroid initial and final position, vary slightly depending on the trajectory. A notable result suggests that MCS propagation speeds are more consistent density currents or cold pools and not gravity waves nor steering-level winds. The results of this study could also provide a dataset for examining larger-scale controls on MCS frequency in addition to assesing convective parameterization and convective-resolving models in regions of complex topography. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Moist Atmospheric Convection)
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Article
Automated Recognition of Macro Downburst Using Doppler Weather Radar
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 672; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050672 - 22 Apr 2022
Abstract
In light of the macro downburst’s ground divergent flow field characteristics and high reflectivity, this paper proposes an algorithm for identifying the downburst area using a Doppler weather radar low-level radial velocity and reflectivity factor (abbreviated as reflectivity, the same below). To binarize [...] Read more.
In light of the macro downburst’s ground divergent flow field characteristics and high reflectivity, this paper proposes an algorithm for identifying the downburst area using a Doppler weather radar low-level radial velocity and reflectivity factor (abbreviated as reflectivity, the same below). To binarize the radial velocity, perform quality control on the radial velocity and reflectivity, then combine the reflectivity and the radial velocity threshold. Following that, use the Eight-Neighborhood method to retrieve the positive and negative velocity connected regions and perform the connected regions. The positive and negative velocity pairs are then matched, and the zero Doppler velocity line between the positive and negative velocity pairs is extracted, followed by the center recognition of the positive and negative velocity downburst areas. The data of downbursts detected by Doppler radar in Jinan, Shandong Province, are used for algorithm verification in this paper. The results show that the proposed algorithm can detect the macro downburst area and identify the downburst center. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Identification and Optimization of Retrieval Model in Atmosphere)
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Article
Forecasting the June Ridge Line of the Western Pacific Subtropical High with a Machine Learning Method
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 660; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050660 - 21 Apr 2022
Abstract
The ridge line of the western Pacific subtropical high (WPSHRL) plays an important role in determining the shift in the summer rain belt in eastern China. In this study, we developed a forecast system for the June WPSHRL index based on the latest [...] Read more.
The ridge line of the western Pacific subtropical high (WPSHRL) plays an important role in determining the shift in the summer rain belt in eastern China. In this study, we developed a forecast system for the June WPSHRL index based on the latest autumn and winter sea surface temperature (SST). Considering the adverse condition created by the small observed sample size, a very simple neural network (NN) model was selected to extract the non-linear relationship between input predictors (SST) and target predictands (WPSHRL) in the forecast system. In addition, some techniques were used to deal with the small sample size, enhance the stabilization of the forecast skills, and analyze the interpretability of the forecast system. The forecast experiments showed that the linear correlation coefficient between the predictions from the forecast system and their corresponding observations was around 0.6, and about three-fifths of the observed abnormal years (the years with an obviously high or low WPSHRL index) were successfully predicted. Furthermore, sensitivity experiments showed that the forecast system is relatively stable in terms of forecast skill. The above results suggest that the forecast system would be valuable in real-life applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Climatology)
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Article
Concept of Using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) for 3D Investigation of Air Quality in the Atmosphere—Example of Measurements Near a Roadside
Atmosphere 2022, 13(5), 663; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13050663 - 21 Apr 2022
Abstract
A substantial amount of air pollution is emitted from urban sources. Hence, investigating air pollutant dispersion from urban sources is of great importance. The mechanisms influencing air pollutant dispersion also need to be studied thoroughly. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)-based systems offer great potential [...] Read more.
A substantial amount of air pollution is emitted from urban sources. Hence, investigating air pollutant dispersion from urban sources is of great importance. The mechanisms influencing air pollutant dispersion also need to be studied thoroughly. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)-based systems offer great potential for mobile exploration of air pollutants in the lower atmosphere due to the high maneuverability of multi-rotor UAVs. The aim of this study was to develop an effective UAV system that can perform high-resolution three-dimensional profiling of pollutants, such as particulate matter (PM), ultrafine particles (UFP), black carbon (BC), as well as meteorological parameters, including air temperature, relative humidity, pressure, wind speed, and wind direction. Different experiments were performed to finalize the positioning of the instruments on the UAV platform so as not to destabilize the drone during flight, even when the wind speed is high and during turbulent flight conditions. Another very crucial question is where to place the air inlet of the measurement devices. In addition, field tests were conducted to evaluate the stability of the UAV platform and the in-flight performance of the sensors. This UAV platform was deployed to perform vertical profiles at the University campus in Stuttgart-Vaihingen and in an area near the campus, close to the federal highway B14. The measurement campaign was performed on three days in February 2021, with a maximum flight height of 120 m above ground. The vertical profiles showed that concentrations were higher on the ground due to the proximity to the source and that high wind speeds assisted pollutant dispersion. The horizontal profiles showed that the pollutant concentrations were higher at the roadside and decreased with increasing distance from the road. In conclusion, this UAV platform represented a low-cost, practical, and reliable method for studying the three-dimensional distribution of pollutants near the source. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Developments in Mobile Monitoring of Air Pollution)
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Article
Experimental Investigation of the Near-Surface Flow Dynamics in Downburst-like Impinging Jets Immersed in ABL-like Winds
Atmosphere 2022, 13(4), 621; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13040621 - 13 Apr 2022
Abstract
Downburst winds are strong downdrafts of cold air that embed into the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) and produce intense horizontal outflow upon impingement on the ground. They are highly transient and three-dimensional extreme wind phenomena with a limited spatiotemporal structure that often makes [...] Read more.
Downburst winds are strong downdrafts of cold air that embed into the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) and produce intense horizontal outflow upon impingement on the ground. They are highly transient and three-dimensional extreme wind phenomena with a limited spatiotemporal structure that often makes the anemometric measurements in nature inadequate for reconstructing their complex flow fields. In the framework of the project THUNDERR, an experimental campaign on downburst outflows has been carried out at the WindEEE Dome at Western University, Canada. The present study analyzes the three-dimensional interaction between downburst (DB) outflows produced as large-scale impinging jets and ABL winds. Most experimental, numerical and analytical models in the literature neglect this flow interplay or treat it in an oversimplistic manner through a vector superposition. We found that the generated near-surface outflow is asymmetric, and a high-intensity wind zone develops at the interface between DB and ABL winds. The time variability of the leading edge of the outflow was investigated by synchronizing all wind measurements across the testing chamber. The three-dimensional flow structure was studied using a refined grid of Cobra probes that sampled the flow at high frequencies. The passage of the primary vortex produced a significant decrease in the height of maximum radial wind speed, predominantly in the ABL-streamwise direction. The turbulence intensity was the highest in the region where DB propagates into oppositely directed ABL winds. Full article
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Article
Low- and Medium-Cost Sensors for Tropospheric Ozone Monitoring—Results of an Evaluation Study in Wrocław, Poland
Atmosphere 2022, 13(4), 542; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13040542 - 29 Mar 2022
Abstract
The paper presents the results of a 1.5-year evaluation study of low- and medium-cost ozone sensors. The tests covered electrochemical sensors: SensoriC O3 3E 1 (City Technology) and semiconductor gas sensors: SM50 OZU (Aeroqual), SP3-61-00 (FIS) and MQ131 (Winsen). Three copies of each [...] Read more.
The paper presents the results of a 1.5-year evaluation study of low- and medium-cost ozone sensors. The tests covered electrochemical sensors: SensoriC O3 3E 1 (City Technology) and semiconductor gas sensors: SM50 OZU (Aeroqual), SP3-61-00 (FIS) and MQ131 (Winsen). Three copies of each sensor were enclosed in a measurement box and placed near the reference analyser (MLU 400). In the case of SensoriC O3 3E 1 sensors, the R2 values for the 1-h data were above 0.90 for the first 9 months of deployment, but a performance deterioration was observed in the subsequent months (R2 ≈ 0.6), due to sensor ageing processes. High linear relationships were observed for the SM50 devices (R2 > 0.94), but some periodic data offsets were reported, making regular checking and recalibration necessary. Power-law functions were used in the case of SP3-61-00 (R2 = 0.6–0.7) and MQ131 (R2 = 0.4–0.7). Improvements in the fittings were observed for models that included temperature and relative humidity data. In the case of SP3-61-00, the R2 values increased to above 0.82, while for MQ131 they increased to above 0.86. The study also showed that the measurement uncertainty of tested sensors meets the EU Directive 2008/50/EC requirements for indicative measurements and, in some cases, even for fixed measurements. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Pollution, Air Quality and Human Health)
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Article
A Sensitivity Study on High Resolution NWP ICON—LAM Model over Italy
Atmosphere 2022, 13(4), 540; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13040540 - 29 Mar 2022
Abstract
In this work, the results of a sensitivity study based on ICON-LAM simulations at 2.5 km of spatial resolution over the Italian area, driven by ECMWF IFS global data, are presented. The main aim is to provide a contribution to the selection of [...] Read more.
In this work, the results of a sensitivity study based on ICON-LAM simulations at 2.5 km of spatial resolution over the Italian area, driven by ECMWF IFS global data, are presented. The main aim is to provide a contribution to the selection of suitable parameterization schemes that result in more effective for a proper representation of the Italian climate features. Model evaluation was conducted in terms of the air temperature and precipitation for three subregions, comparing a set of 13 simulations against SCIA and E-OBS standard datasets. In addition, evaluation was also conducted against selected data stations scattered over the Italian area. We found that the ICON-LAM model was able to provide a good representation of the temperature over Italy, whereas non-negligible biases were observed for precipitation in certain regions. The model proved to be sensitive to changes in physical parameterization schemes. In particular, we found that the explicit treatment of deep convection and the “clouds as in turbulence” scheme for cloud cover allowed for a better representation of precipitation in the summer over the Alpine region. The single moment scheme is currently the best option for cloud microphysics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Meteorology)
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Article
Effects of Indoor Air Pollution on the Development of Children under Five Years of Age in Sri Lanka
Atmosphere 2022, 13(4), 509; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13040509 - 23 Mar 2022
Abstract
Air pollution is a multifaceted environmental toxin affecting the Central Nervous System (CNS) through diverse pathways. The CNS of young children is particularly susceptible to the detrimental effects of toxins, as brain development continues postnatally with the formation of interneuronal connections, glial cell [...] Read more.
Air pollution is a multifaceted environmental toxin affecting the Central Nervous System (CNS) through diverse pathways. The CNS of young children is particularly susceptible to the detrimental effects of toxins, as brain development continues postnatally with the formation of interneuronal connections, glial cell proliferation and myelination of axons. Indoor air pollution (IAP) from solid fuel combustion is more harmful than outdoor air pollution. Numerous air pollutants hazardous to health are released during the burning of unprocessed biomass. The primary source of fuel in Sri Lanka for cooking is biomass, mainly wood. In this study, we evaluated the influence of IAP resulting from biomass combustion on the neurodevelopment of children. In a cohort of children under five years living in a semi-urban area of Sri Lanka, neurodevelopment was assessed using Denver II developmental screening test. Air quality levels were measured (Carbon Monoxide (CO) and Particulate Matter 2.5 (PM2.5)) in a subsample. There were significantly high levels of CO and PM2.5 in the ambient air of households using biomass as the primary fuel for cooking. Children living in these households had a significantly higher number of children with ‘suspect’ developmental assessment scores in the language, social behavior and play and gross motor development domains. Full article
Article
The Impact of Intra-Seasonal Oscillation on Westward Track Deflection of Super Typhoon Fitow (2013)
Atmosphere 2022, 13(3), 474; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13030474 - 14 Mar 2022
Abstract
Typhoon Fitow (2013) took an unusual westward track deflection after a lengthy northward movement over the western North Pacific (WNP). Based on observation and wave analysis, it is found that the track deflection of Fitow is attributed to the transition of environmental flow [...] Read more.
Typhoon Fitow (2013) took an unusual westward track deflection after a lengthy northward movement over the western North Pacific (WNP). Based on observation and wave analysis, it is found that the track deflection of Fitow is attributed to the transition of environmental flow from meridional to zonal orientation, which is closely associated with a low-frequency intra-seasonal oscillation (ISO). Furthermore, the impact of ISO on tropical cyclone (TC) unusual movement is investigated using the Advanced Research version of Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF-ARW) model. The control simulation (CTL) reproduces well the synoptic pattern and track deflection of the TC. The TC moves straightly westward and northwestward without track deflection in the sensitivity experiments with the removal of total ISOs and the west-propagating ISO component, while keeping the recurving track with the removal of east-propagating ISO, which suggests that the west-propagating ISO plays a dominant role in the westward track deflection. In the experiment of removing west-propagating ISOs, an anomalous southeast–northwest-oriented wave train around the TC is modified, the mid-latitude trough decays, and the enhanced zonally elongated subtropical high is responsible for the straight northwestward motion of the TC. However, after removing a weaker convection anomaly associated with east-propagating ISOs in the form of a southwest–northeast oriented dipole circulation, the TC is affected by a sustained shallow mid-latitude trough and a west-extended ridge of subtropical high to keep the cyclonic track turning analogous to the counterpart in CTL. The piecewise potential vorticity inversion diagnosis further assesses the contribution of the different ISO components to TC track deflection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Meteorology)
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Article
Meteorological Analysis of the 2021 Extreme Wildfires in Greece: Lessons Learned and Implications for Early Warning of the Potential for Pyroconvection
Atmosphere 2022, 13(3), 475; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13030475 - 14 Mar 2022
Abstract
The 2021 fire season in Greece was the worst of the past 13 years, resulting in more than 130,000 ha of burnt area, with about 70% consumed by five wildfires that ignited and spread in early August. Common to these wildfires was the [...] Read more.
The 2021 fire season in Greece was the worst of the past 13 years, resulting in more than 130,000 ha of burnt area, with about 70% consumed by five wildfires that ignited and spread in early August. Common to these wildfires was the occurrence of violent pyroconvection. This work presents a meteorological analysis of this outbreak of extreme pyroconvective wildfires. Our analysis shows that dry and warm antecedent weather preconditioned fuels in the fire-affected areas, creating a fire environment that alone could effectively support intense wildfire activity. Analysis of surface conditions revealed that the ignition and the most active spread of all wildfires coincided with the most adverse fire weather since the beginning of the fire season. Further, the atmospheric environment was conducive to violent pyroconvection, as atmospheric instability gradually increased amid the breakdown of an upper-air ridge ahead of an approaching long-wave trough. In summary, we highlight that the severity and extent of the 2021 Greek wildfires were not surprising considering the fire weather potential for the period when they ignited. Continuous monitoring of the large- and local-scale conditions that promote extreme fire behavior is imperative for improving Greece’s capacity for managing extreme wildfires. Full article
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Article
Signal Simulation of Dual-Polarization Weather Radar and Its Application in Range Ambiguity Mitigation
Atmosphere 2022, 13(3), 432; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13030432 - 08 Mar 2022
Abstract
In this paper, a dual-polarization weather radar echo signal simulation method is proposed for the evaluation of the performance enhancement of dual-polarization weather radar systems, the optimization of signal processing algorithms and the improvement of scanning strategies. The actual weather radar base data [...] Read more.
In this paper, a dual-polarization weather radar echo signal simulation method is proposed for the evaluation of the performance enhancement of dual-polarization weather radar systems, the optimization of signal processing algorithms and the improvement of scanning strategies. The actual weather radar base data are used in the simulation as the reference weather scene, which avoids using a complex algorithm for weather modeling. Moreover, based on radar weather equations, the radar system parameters are added into the radar echo signal modeling to establish the relationship between the simulated echo signal and radar system. As a result, the final simulated echo signal not only shows both the time and frequency domain characteristics of the weather target, but also includes the effects of the important performance of the dual-polarization weather radar system. In addition, to evaluate the performance of range ambiguity mitigation using phase coding and batch working modes, two different simulation methods for the radar signal are established on the method above; one is for batch working mode with long-PRT (pulse repetition time) and short-PRT transmission and receiving, and the other is for phase-coded mode with phase-coded transmission and phase-uncoded receiving. Under the same weather scene, the observation of these two different methods of range ambiguity mitigation are simulated and compared. Results show that the performance of the phase coding mode for mitigating range ambiguity is better than that of the batch mode. Obviously, the simulation method can be used to directly show the observation of different algorithms for mitigation range ambiguity under the same weather process, and quickly compare and evaluate the algorithm’s performance, which is not possible for real radars. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Radar Sensing Atmosphere: Modelling, Imaging and Prediction)
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Article
Analysis of Wildfires in the Mid and High Latitudes Using a Multi-Dataset Approach: A Case Study in California and Krasnoyarsk Krai
Atmosphere 2022, 13(3), 428; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13030428 - 07 Mar 2022
Abstract
In this study, we investigate the emissions from wildfires in the mid latitude (California) and high latitude (Krasnoyarsk Krai) during the periods of 16–17 August 2020 and 28 July 2019, respectively. Wildfires are unique in themselves as they are driven by various factors [...] Read more.
In this study, we investigate the emissions from wildfires in the mid latitude (California) and high latitude (Krasnoyarsk Krai) during the periods of 16–17 August 2020 and 28 July 2019, respectively. Wildfires are unique in themselves as they are driven by various factors such as fuel type, topology, and meteorology. In this study, we analyze whether there are any major variations in the emissions and transport of pollutants between two large wildfire cases in the mid latitude of California and high latitude of Krasnoyarsk Krai. The study is important to understand and characterize the emission regime from biomass burning of different land covers using a mutli-dataset approach. We analyze whether there are any major variations in the emissions and transport of pollutants from these wildfires. For example, the aerosol extinction coefficient profile showed smoke detected at the highest altitude of 9 km in Krasnoyarsk Krai, whereas in California the highest altitude was observed at approximately 6 km. Moreover, large values of black carbon (BC) concentration were observed in Krasnoyarsk Krai approximately 7 µg/m3 compared to the 0.44 µg/m3 observed in California. Areas with an immense dense vegetation are prone to large emissions. The results from this case study suggest that high latitude wildfires emit more pollutants than mid latitude wildfires. However, more studies in the future will be conducted to conclude this observation and finding with certainty. Full article
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Article
Aviation Turbulence Forecasting over the Portuguese Flight Information Regions: Algorithm and Objective Verification
Atmosphere 2022, 13(3), 422; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13030422 - 05 Mar 2022
Abstract
Aviation turbulence remains one of the leading causes of weather-related aviation accidents. Therefore, turbulence prediction is a major concern of aviation forecasters. This paper describes the turbulence index (TURBIPMA) developed and used operationally at the Portuguese Institute of Sea and [...] Read more.
Aviation turbulence remains one of the leading causes of weather-related aviation accidents. Therefore, turbulence prediction is a major concern of aviation forecasters. This paper describes the turbulence index (TURBIPMA) developed and used operationally at the Portuguese Institute of Sea and Atmosphere (IPMA), based on several diagnostics derived from ECMWF forecasts, using a new calibration approach. The forecast skill of the TURBIPMA and of individual diagnostics are evaluated using turbulence observations over the Portuguese Flight Information Regions and surrounding areas, for 12 months between February 2020 and March 2021 (excluding May and June). The forecasting skill of the predictors is discussed in terms of the Relative Operating Characteristic (ROC) curves, which is widely applied, but also in terms of novel measures such as the Symmetric Extremal Dependence Index (SEDI) and Symmetric Extreme Dependency Score (SEDS). The new measures are particularly relevant in assessing forecasts of rare events, such as moderate-or-greater turbulence. The operational index outperforms individual diagnostics (such as Ellrod) in terms of all verification measures. Furthermore, the use of a new Richardson number function was proven to be beneficial. Finally, the turbulence prediction by IPMA was comparable to that of the London WAFC for one turbulence episode. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Atmospheric Turbulence: Observations and Models)
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Article
Sources and Seasonal Variance of Ambient Volatile Organic Compounds in the Typical Industrial City of Changzhi, Northern China
Atmosphere 2022, 13(3), 393; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13030393 - 27 Feb 2022
Abstract
Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted from industrial processes, which are major emission sources of air pollutants, could cause significant impacts on air quality. However, studies on the comprehensive analysis from sources contributing to the health risk perspective regarding ambient VOCs in industrial cities [...] Read more.
Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted from industrial processes, which are major emission sources of air pollutants, could cause significant impacts on air quality. However, studies on the comprehensive analysis from sources contributing to the health risk perspective regarding ambient VOCs in industrial cities are limited. In this study, VOC samples were collected from 15 April 2018 to 19 October 2018 in Changzhi, a typical industrial city in northern China, and a total of 57 VOCs were measured for analysis. The average VOC concentrations were 54.4 µg·m−3, with the highest concentrations in autumn (58.4 µg·m−3). Ambient VOCs in spring, summer and autumn were all dominated by alkanes (66.8%), with contributions of 70.3%, 66.3% and 63.8%, respectively. The top five concentrations of total VOCs were isopentane (19.0%), ethane (9.5%), n-butane (8.1%), benzene (7.9%) and propane (5.2%), indicating that vehicle exhaust and coal combustion are the main sources of VOCs. Source apportionment by principal component analysis showed that vehicle exhaust (27.5%) and coal combustion (23.5%) were the main sources of VOCs in Changzhi, followed by industrial production (17.4%), solvent evaporation (13.5%), liquefied petroleum gas/natural gas leaking (9.5%), and biogenic emissions (8.7%). Sources of coal combustion and vehicle exhaust contributed more VOCs than industrial production. The carcinogenic risks of benzene (3.4 × 10−5) and ethylbenzene (2.2 × 10−6) were higher than the limit levels (1 × 10−6). Coal combustion contributed most (25.3%) to the carcinogenic risks because of its high VOC emissions. In an industrial city such as Changzhi, vehicle exhaust and coal combustion have become major sources of ambient air VOCs owing to the increasingly stringent industrial standards. Therefore, VOCs from vehicle exhaust and coal combustion also need to take into account mitigation measures for VOCs from the perspective of source contribution to health risk. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Air Quality and Human Health)
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Article
Ionospheric Science: An Example of the Importance of Diversity in Approaches to Scientific Research
Atmosphere 2022, 13(3), 394; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13030394 - 27 Feb 2022
Cited by 1
Abstract
This paper discusses the strategic importance of contemporary ionospheric science. It outlines some key features of the evolution of the science from the first practical experiments in the 1920s through to the diverse inter-disciplinary science of today. This science includes fundamental studies of [...] Read more.
This paper discusses the strategic importance of contemporary ionospheric science. It outlines some key features of the evolution of the science from the first practical experiments in the 1920s through to the diverse inter-disciplinary science of today. This science includes fundamental studies of partially ionised plasmas and of the complex systems that arise when those plasmas are coupled to neutral atmospheres and magnetospheres. However, the science also has great potential to deliver societal benefits if the science can be refined to obtain a deep physical understanding of ionospheric phenomena and that understanding is then transitioned into use by operational services such as forecasts of ionospheric conditions. Thus, ionospheric science is now very similar in form to other environment sciences and, the same as them, needs to be positioned in a diverse scientific culture that supports the full range of science research, including not only curiosity-driven studies, but also targeted research to deepen our physical understanding to a level that is sufficient to enable a transition to operational services. That diversity also includes support for that transition and also facilitates feedback from operations teams to researchers. Such feedback can be a powerful stimulus for future research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ionospheric Monitoring and Modelling for Space Weather)
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Article
Ionospheric Variability during the 2020–2021 SSW: COSMIC-2 Observations and WACCM-X Simulations
Atmosphere 2022, 13(3), 368; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13030368 - 22 Feb 2022
Abstract
Variability in the ionosphere during the 2020–2021 sudden stratospheric warming (SSW) is investigated using a combination of Constellation Observing System for Meteorology, Ionosphere, and Climate-2 (COSMIC-2) observations and the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model with thermosphere–ionosphere eXtension (WACCM-X) simulations. The unprecedented spatial–temporal sampling [...] Read more.
Variability in the ionosphere during the 2020–2021 sudden stratospheric warming (SSW) is investigated using a combination of Constellation Observing System for Meteorology, Ionosphere, and Climate-2 (COSMIC-2) observations and the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model with thermosphere–ionosphere eXtension (WACCM-X) simulations. The unprecedented spatial–temporal sampling of the low latitude ionosphere afforded by COSMIC-2 enables investigating the short-term (<5 days) variability in the ionosphere during the SSW event. The COSMIC-2 observations reveal a reduction in the diurnal and zonal mean ionosphere total electron content (ITEC) and reduced amplitude of the diurnal variation in the ionosphere during the SSW. Enhanced ITEC amplitudes of the semidiurnal solar and lunar migrating tides and the westward propagating semidiurnal tide with zonal wavenumber 3 are also observed. The WACCM-X simulations demonstrate that these variations are driven by variability in the stratosphere–mesosphere during the 2020–2021 SSW event. The results show the impact of the 2020–2021 SSW on the mean state, diurnal, and semidiurnal variations in the ionosphere, as well as the capabilities of the COSMIC-2 mission to observe short-term variability in the ionosphere that is driven by meteorological variability in the lower atmosphere. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in GNSS Radio Occultation Technique and Applications)
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Article
Evaluating Probability Distribution Functions for the Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index over Ethiopia
Atmosphere 2022, 13(3), 364; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13030364 - 22 Feb 2022
Abstract
Drought indices are used to identify and monitor drought events. The standardized precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI) is a widely used index based on accumulated water balance. There is, however, no broad consensus on which probability distribution is the most appropriate for water balances. [...] Read more.
Drought indices are used to identify and monitor drought events. The standardized precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI) is a widely used index based on accumulated water balance. There is, however, no broad consensus on which probability distribution is the most appropriate for water balances. This issue is investigated for Ethiopia using 125 meteorological stations spread across the country. Based on long-term series, a selection was made among the generalized extreme value, Pearson type 3, and generalized logistics (Genlog) distributions. Additionally, the effect of using actual, instead of potential, evapotranspiration and a limited amount of data (10, 15, 20, and 25 years) is explored. Genlog is found to be the best distribution for all accumulation periods. Furthermore, there is a considerable difference amongst the SPEI values estimated from the three distributions on the identification of extreme wet or extreme dry periods. Next, there are significant differences between standardized precipitation actual evapotranspiration index (SPAEI) and SPEI, signifying the importance of drought index selection for proper drought monitoring. Finally, time series of 20 or 25 years of data lead to almost similar SPEI values to those estimated using more than 30 years of data, so could potentially be used to assess drought in Ethiopia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agrometeorology)
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Article
A New Method for the Assessment of the Oxidative Potential of Both Water-Soluble and Insoluble PM
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 349; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020349 - 19 Feb 2022
Cited by 1
Abstract
Water-soluble and insoluble fractions of airborne particulate matter (PM) exhibit different toxicological potentials and peculiar mechanisms of action in biological systems. However, most of the research on the oxidative potential (OP) of PM is focused exclusively on its water-soluble fraction, since experimental criticisms [...] Read more.
Water-soluble and insoluble fractions of airborne particulate matter (PM) exhibit different toxicological potentials and peculiar mechanisms of action in biological systems. However, most of the research on the oxidative potential (OP) of PM is focused exclusively on its water-soluble fraction, since experimental criticisms were encountered for detaching the whole PM (soluble and insoluble species) from field filters. However, to estimate the actual potential effects of PM on human health, it is essential to assess the OP of both its water-soluble and insoluble fractions. In this study, to estimate the total OP (TOP), an efficient method for the detachment of intact PM10 from field filters by using an electrical toothbrush was applied to 20 PM10 filters in order to obtain PM10 water suspensions to be used for the DCFH, AA and DTT oxidative potential assays (OPDCFH, OPAA and OPDTT). The contribution of the insoluble PM10 to the TOP was evaluated by comparing the TOP values to those obtained by applying the three OP assays to the water-soluble fraction of 20 equivalent PM10 filters. The OP of the insoluble fraction (IOP) was calculated as the difference between the TOP and the WSOP. Moreover, each PM10 sample was analyzed for the water-soluble and insoluble fractions of 10 elements (Al, Cr, Cs, Cu, Fe, Li, Ni, Rb, Sb, Sn) identified as primary elemental tracers of the main emission sources in the study area. A principal component analysis (PCA) was performed on the data obtained to identify the predominant sources for the determination of TOP, WSOP, and IOP. Results showed that water-soluble PM10 released by traffic, steel plant, and biomass burning is mainly responsible for the generation of the TOP as well as of the WSOP. This evidence gave strength to the reliability of the results from OP assays performed only on the water-soluble fraction of PM. Lastly, the IOPDCFH and IOPDTT were found to be principally determined by insoluble PM10 from mineral dust. Full article
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Article
Clustering Analysis on Drivers of O3 Diurnal Pattern and Interactions with Nighttime NO3 and HONO
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 351; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020351 - 19 Feb 2022
Abstract
The long-path differential optical absorption spectroscopy (LP-DOAS) technique was deployed in Shanghai to continuously monitor ozone (O3), formaldehyde (HCHO), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), nitrous acid (HONO), and nitrate radical (NO3) mixing ratios from September 2019 to August 2020. [...] Read more.
The long-path differential optical absorption spectroscopy (LP-DOAS) technique was deployed in Shanghai to continuously monitor ozone (O3), formaldehyde (HCHO), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), nitrous acid (HONO), and nitrate radical (NO3) mixing ratios from September 2019 to August 2020. Through a clustering method, four typical clusters of the O3 diurnal pattern were identified: high during both the daytime and nighttime (cluster 1), high during the nighttime but low during the daytime (cluster 2), low during both the daytime and nighttime (cluster 3), and low during the nighttime but high during the daytime (cluster 4). The drivers of O3 variation for the four clusters were investigated for the day- and nighttime. Ambient NO caused the O3 gap after midnight between clusters 1 and 2 and clusters 3 and 4. During the daytime, vigorous O3 generation (clusters 1 and 4) was found to accompany higher temperature, lower humidity, lower wind speed, and higher radiation. Moreover, O3 concentration correlated with HCHO for all clusters except for the low O3 cluster 3, while O3 correlated with HCHO/NOx, but anti-correlated with NOx for all clusters. The lower boundary layer height before midnight hindered O3 diffusion and accordingly determined the final O3 accumulation over the daily cycle for clusters 1 and 4. The interactions between the O3 diel profile and other atmospheric reactive components established that higher HONO before sunrise significantly promoted daytime O3 generation, while higher daytime O3 led to a higher nighttime NO3 level. This paper summarizes the interplays between day- and nighttime oxidants and oxidation products, particularly the cause and effect for daytime O3 generation from the perspective of nighttime atmospheric components. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Optical Remote Sensing of Atmosphere)
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Article
Venus’ Cloud-Tracked Winds Using Ground- and Space-Based Observations with TNG/NICS and VEx/VIRTIS
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 337; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020337 - 17 Feb 2022
Abstract
Characterizing the wind speeds of Venus and their variability at multiple vertical levels is essential for a better understanding of the atmospheric superrotation, constraining the role of large-scale planetary waves in the maintenance of this superrotation, and in studying how the wind field [...] Read more.
Characterizing the wind speeds of Venus and their variability at multiple vertical levels is essential for a better understanding of the atmospheric superrotation, constraining the role of large-scale planetary waves in the maintenance of this superrotation, and in studying how the wind field affects clouds’ distribution. Here, we present cloud-tracked wind results of the Venus nightside, obtained with unprecedented quality using ground-based observations during July 2012 with the near-infrared camera and spectrograph (NICS) of the Telescopio Nazionale Galileo (TNG) in La Palma. These observations were performed during 3 consecutive days for periods of 2.5 h starting just before dawn, sensing the nightside lower clouds of Venus close to 48 km of altitude with images taken at continuum K filter at 2.28 μm. Our observations cover a period of time when ESA’s Venus Express was not able to observe these deeper clouds of Venus due to a failure in the infrared channel of its imaging spectrometer, VIRTIS-M, and the dates were chosen to coordinate these ground-based observations with Venus Express’ observations of the dayside cloud tops (at about 70 km) with images at 380 nm acquired with the imaging spectrometer VIRTIS-M. Thanks to the quality and spatial resolution of TNG/NICS images and the use of an accurate technique of template matching to perform cloud tracking, we present the most detailed and complete profile of wind speeds ever performed using ground-based observations of Venus. The vertical shear of the wind was also obtained for the first time, obtained by the combination of ground-based and space-based observations, during the Venus Express mission since the year 2008, when the infrared channel of VIRTIS-M stopped working. Our observations exhibit day-to-day changes in the nightside lower clouds, the probable manifestation of the cloud discontinuity, no relevant variations in the zonal winds, and an accurate characterization of their decay towards the poles, along with the meridional circulation. Finally, we also present the latitudinal profiles of zonal winds, meridional winds, and vertical shear of the zonal wind between the upper clouds’ top and lower clouds, confirming previous findings by Venus Express. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Planetary Atmospheres: From Solar System to Exoplanets)
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Article
Study of an Asymmetric and Anticyclonic Bow Echo Near Taiwan
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 331; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020331 - 16 Feb 2022
Abstract
On 2 April 2007, a strong bow echo struck southern Taiwan, with a peak surface wind speed of 26 m s−1. On observation, the rear inflow jet (RIJ) was located at the northern flank and only one anticyclonic vortex dominated behind [...] Read more.
On 2 April 2007, a strong bow echo struck southern Taiwan, with a peak surface wind speed of 26 m s−1. On observation, the rear inflow jet (RIJ) was located at the northern flank and only one anticyclonic vortex dominated behind the bow structure. This case was different from commonly occurring cyclonic–anticyclonic pairs of bookend vortices, and was investigated through data analysis, model simulation, and vorticity budget diagnostics. The present bow echo formed at the leading edge of a cold front, with favorable ingredients of instability, large west-southwesterly vertical wind shear, and dry air aloft. Farther behind the front, however, stable conditions could not support deep convection and the portion north of the RIJ was therefore missing. Within a frontal flow structure, the developing mechanism of the anticyclonic vortex also differed from typical cases. As the low-level (west-southwesterly) vertical shear pointed from right to left of the line, and the tilting effect of updrafts generated positive (negative) vorticity at the front (rear) side. South of and below the RIJ, the anticyclonic vorticity was enhanced by the stretching and tilting effect of system-generated horizontal vorticity via a sinking motion. These sources of vorticity were then advected downward and southwestward by the postfrontal flow near the surface. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Meteorology)
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Article
Effect of Diesel Soot on the Heterogeneous Reaction of NO2 on the Surface of γ-Al2O3
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 333; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020333 - 16 Feb 2022
Abstract
Soot and aged soot are often found to be mixed with atmospheric particles, which inevitably affect various atmospheric heterogeneous reactions and secondary aerosol formation. Previous studies have investigated the heterogeneous reaction of NO2 with different types of soot, but there are few [...] Read more.
Soot and aged soot are often found to be mixed with atmospheric particles, which inevitably affect various atmospheric heterogeneous reactions and secondary aerosol formation. Previous studies have investigated the heterogeneous reaction of NO2 with different types of soot, but there are few studies on the heterogeneous reaction of NO2 with mixtures containing diesel soot (DS) or aged DS and mineral dust particles. In this study, the effects of DS and aged DS on the heterogeneous reaction of NO2 on the surface of γ-Al2O3 were investigated via in-situ diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier transform spectrometry (DRIFTS). The results showed that the DS or DS n-hexane extract significantly inhibited the formation of nitrate on γ-Al2O3 particles and promoted the formation of nitrite. At 58% RH, with the increase of DS or DS n-hexane extract loading amount, the effect of DS or DS n-hexane extract on the formation of nitrate changed from promotion to inhibition, but DS or DS n-hexane extract always promoted the formation of nitrite. The results also showed that light was conducive to the formation of nitrate on the DS-γ-Al2O3 or DS-n-hexane extract-γ-Al2O3 particles. Furthermore, the influence of soot aging on the heterogeneous reaction of NO2 was investigated under light and no light. In the dark, O3-aged DS-γ-Al2O3 or O3-aged DS-n-hexane extract-γ-Al2O3 firstly inhibited the formation of nitrate on the mixed particles and then promoted it, while the effect of aged DS on nitrite formation was complex. Under light, the O3-aged DS-γ-Al2O3 firstly promoted the formation of nitrate on the mixed particles and then inhibited it, while the O3-aged DS-n-hexane extract-γ-Al2O3 promoted the formation of nitrate on the mixed particles. Our results further showed that the production of nitrate on the O3-aged particles under light or no light was greater than that of the UV-nitrate-aged particles. This study is helpful to deeply understand the atmospheric chemical behavior of soot and the heterogeneous conversion of atmospheric NO2. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brown Carbon and Its Atmospheric Chemical Evolution)
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Article
Multiparametric Sensor Node for Environmental Monitoring Based on Energy Harvesting
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 321; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020321 - 15 Feb 2022
Abstract
The heterogeneity and levels of chemicals released into the environment have dramatically grown in the last few years. Therefore, new low-cost tools are increasingly required to monitor pollution and follow its trends over time. Recent approaches in electronics and wireless communications permit the [...] Read more.
The heterogeneity and levels of chemicals released into the environment have dramatically grown in the last few years. Therefore, new low-cost tools are increasingly required to monitor pollution and follow its trends over time. Recent approaches in electronics and wireless communications permit the expansion of low-power, low-cost, and multiparametric sensor nodes that are limited in size and communicate untethered in small distances. For such a monitoring system to be ultimately feasible, a suitable power source for these nodes must be found. The present research falls within the frame of this global effort. The study sits within the context discussed above with the particular aim of developing groundbreaking technology-based solutions by means of efficient environmentally powered wireless smart sensors. This paper presents a multiparametric sensor node for indoor/outdoor air quality monitoring, able to work without battery and human intervention, harvesting energy from the surrounding environment for perpetual operation. The complete system design of the sensor and experimental results are reported. The evaluation of the energy-harvesting blocks with a budget allocation of the power consumption is also discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Atmospheric Techniques, Instruments, and Modeling)
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Article
Community-Engaged Use of Low-Cost Sensors to Assess the Spatial Distribution of PM2.5 Concentrations across Disadvantaged Communities: Results from a Pilot Study in Santa Ana, CA
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 304; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020304 - 11 Feb 2022
Cited by 1
Abstract
PM2.5 is an air pollutant that is widely associated with adverse health effects, and which tends to be disproportionately located near low-income communities and communities of color. We applied a community-engaged research approach to assess the distribution of PM2.5 concentrations in [...] Read more.
PM2.5 is an air pollutant that is widely associated with adverse health effects, and which tends to be disproportionately located near low-income communities and communities of color. We applied a community-engaged research approach to assess the distribution of PM2.5 concentrations in the context of community concerns and urban features within and around the city of Santa Ana, CA. Approximately 183 h of one-minute average PM2.5 measurements, along with high-resolution geographic coordinate measurements, were collected by volunteer community participants using roughly two dozen low-cost AtmoTube Pro air pollution sensors paired with real-time GPS tracking devices. PM2.5 varied by region, time of day, and month. In general, concentrations were higher near the city’s industrial corridor, which is an area of concern to local community members. While the freeway systems were shown to correlate with some degree of elevated air pollution, two of four sampling days demonstrated little to no visible association with freeway traffic. Concentrations tended to be higher within socioeconomically disadvantaged communities compared to other areas. This pilot study demonstrates the utility of using low-cost air pollution sensors for the application of community-engaged study designs that leverage community knowledge, enable high-density air monitoring, and facilitate greater health-related awareness, education, and empowerment among communities. The mobile air-monitoring approach used in this study, and its application to characterize the ambient air quality within a defined geographic region, is in contrast to other community-engaged studies, which employ fixed-site monitoring and/or focus on personal exposure. The findings from this study underscore the existence of environmental health inequities that persist in urban areas today, which can help to inform policy decisions related to health equity, future urban planning, and community access to resources. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Developments in Mobile Monitoring of Air Pollution)
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Article
Spatiotemporal Patterns and Regional Transport of Ground-Level Ozone in Major Urban Agglomerations in China
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 301; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020301 - 10 Feb 2022
Abstract
Ground-level ozone (O3) pollution has become a serious environmental issue in major urban agglomerations in China. To investigate the spatiotemporal patterns and regional transports of O3 in Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei (BTH-UA), the Yangtze River Delta (YRD-UA), the Triangle of Central China (TC-UA), [...] Read more.
Ground-level ozone (O3) pollution has become a serious environmental issue in major urban agglomerations in China. To investigate the spatiotemporal patterns and regional transports of O3 in Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei (BTH-UA), the Yangtze River Delta (YRD-UA), the Triangle of Central China (TC-UA), Chengdu–Chongqing (CY-UA), and the Pearl River Delta urban agglomeration (PRD-UA), multiple transdisciplinary methods were employed to analyze the O3-concentration data that were collected from national air quality monitoring networks operated by the China National Environmental Monitoring Center (CNEMC). It was found that although ozone concentrations have decreased in recent years, ozone pollution is still a serious issue in China. O3 exhibited different spatiotemporal patterns in the five urban agglomerations. In terms of monthly variations, O3 had a unimodal structure in BTH-UA but a bimodal structure in the other urban agglomerations. The maximum O3 concentration was in autumn in PRD-UA, but in summer in the other urban agglomerations. In spatial distribution, the main distribution of O3 concentration was aligned in northeast–southwest direction for BTH-UA and CY-UA, but in northwest–southeast direction for YRD-UA, TC-UA, and PRD-UA. O3 concentrations exhibited positive spatial autocorrelations in BTH-UA, YRD-UA, and TC-UA, but negative spatial autocorrelations in CY-UA and PRD-UA. Variations in O3 concentration were more affected by weather fluctuations in coastal cities while the variations were more affected by seasonal changes in inland cities. O3 transport in the center cities of the five urban agglomerations was examined by backward trajectory and potential source analyses. Local areas mainly contributed to the O3 concentrations in the five cities, but regional transport also played a significant role. Our findings suggest joint efforts across cities and regions will be necessary to reduce O3 pollution in major urban agglomerations in China. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biometeorology)
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Article
Experimental and Theoretical Studies of Trans-2-Pentenal Atmospheric Ozonolysis
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 291; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020291 - 09 Feb 2022
Abstract
We investigated the kinetics, mechanism and secondary organic aerosols formation of the ozonolysis of trans-2-pentenal (T2P) using four different reactors with Fourier Transform InfraRed (FTIR) spectroscopy and Gas Chromatography (GC) techniques at T = 298 ± 2 K and 760 Torr in dry [...] Read more.
We investigated the kinetics, mechanism and secondary organic aerosols formation of the ozonolysis of trans-2-pentenal (T2P) using four different reactors with Fourier Transform InfraRed (FTIR) spectroscopy and Gas Chromatography (GC) techniques at T = 298 ± 2 K and 760 Torr in dry conditions. The rate coefficients and branching ratios were also evaluated using the canonical variational transition (CVT) state theory coupled with small curvature tunneling (CVT/SCT) in the range 278–350 K. The experimental rate coefficient at 298 K was (1.46 ± 0.17) × 10−18 cm3 molecule−1 s−1, in good agreement with the theoretical rate. The two primary carbonyls formation yields, glyoxal and propanal, were 57 ± 10% and 42 ± 12%, respectively, with OH scavenger compared to 38 ± 8% for glyoxal and 26 ± 5% for propanal without OH scavenger. Acetaldehyde and 2-hydroxypropanal were also identified and quantified with yields of 9 ± 3% and 5 ± 2%, respectively, in the presence of OH scavenger. For the OH production, an upper limit of 24% was estimated using mesitylene as OH tracer. Combining experimental and theoretical findings enabled the establishment of a chemical mechanism. Finally, the SOA formation was observed with mass yields of about 1.5%. This work provides additional information on the effect of the aldehyde functional group on the fragmentation of the primary ozonide. Full article
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Article
Characteristics of Dry-Wet Climate Change in China during the Past 60 Years and Its Trends Projection
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 275; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020275 - 07 Feb 2022
Cited by 3
Abstract
Based on the homogenized daily data of 2255 meteorological stations during the past 60 years from 1961 to 2020, the potential evapotranspiration was calculated using the revised FAO56 Penman–Monteith model, and then the annual AI (aridity index, the ratio of annual potential evapotranspiration [...] Read more.
Based on the homogenized daily data of 2255 meteorological stations during the past 60 years from 1961 to 2020, the potential evapotranspiration was calculated using the revised FAO56 Penman–Monteith model, and then the annual AI (aridity index, the ratio of annual potential evapotranspiration to annual precipitation) was employed to analyze the dry-wet climate change in China. The GCM models’ prediction data was used to analyze the possible trends of dry-wet climate in China by the end of this century. The results showed that in the past 60 years, the climate in China was getting wetter, especially in the western regions of China, including Xinjiang, western Qinghai, Gansu, western Inner Mongolia, and northwestern Tibet. In the last 10 years, China’s climate has become more humid. Compared with the 1960s, the total area of aridity has decreased by about 650,000 square kilometers. The changes of different climate zones have regional and periodical characteristics. There was a tendency to get wet periods in all four seasons, especially in summer. Analysis of GCM model projection data shows that by the end of this century, the climate in China would have a general trend of becoming drier. The drier regions are mainly located in the central and eastern parts of China, while the western regions of China continue to maintain the wetting trends. In the case of high emissions, the trends of drying in the central and eastern and wetting in the west are more significant than in the case of medium emission. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Meteorological Extremes in China)
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Article
Sensible Heat and Latent Heat Flux Estimates in a Tall and Dense Forest Canopy under Unstable Conditions
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 264; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020264 - 04 Feb 2022
Abstract
A method to estimate the sensible heat flux (H) for unstable atmospheric condition requiring measurements taken in half-hourly basis as input and involving the land surface temperature (LST), HLST, was tested over a tall and dense aspen stand. The [...] Read more.
A method to estimate the sensible heat flux (H) for unstable atmospheric condition requiring measurements taken in half-hourly basis as input and involving the land surface temperature (LST), HLST, was tested over a tall and dense aspen stand. The method avoids the need to estimate the zero-plane displacement and the roughness length for momentum. The net radiation (Rn) and the latent heat flux (λE) dominated the surface energy balance (SEB). Therefore, λE was estimated applying the residual method using HLST as input, λER-LST. The sum of H and λE determined with the eddy covariance (EC) method led to a surface energy imbalance of 20% Rn. Thus, the reference taken for the comparisons were determined forcing the SEB using the EC Bowen ratio (BREB method). For clear sky days, HLST performed close to HBREB. Therefore, it showed potential in the framework of remote sensing because the input requirements are similar to current methods widely used. For cloudy days, HLST scattered HBREB and nearly matched the accumulated sensible hear flux. Regardless of the time basis and cloudiness, λER-LST was close to λEBREB. For all the data, both HLST and λER-LST were not biased and showed, respectively, a mean absolute relative error of 24.5% and 12.5% and an index of agreement of 68.5% and 80%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agrometeorology)
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Article
South America Seasonal Precipitation Prediction by Gradient-Boosting Machine-Learning Approach
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 243; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020243 - 31 Jan 2022
Abstract
Machine learning has experienced great success in many applications. Precipitation is a hard meteorological variable to predict, but it has a strong impact on society. Here, a machine-learning technique—a formulation of gradient-boosted trees—is applied to climate seasonal precipitation prediction over South America. The [...] Read more.
Machine learning has experienced great success in many applications. Precipitation is a hard meteorological variable to predict, but it has a strong impact on society. Here, a machine-learning technique—a formulation of gradient-boosted trees—is applied to climate seasonal precipitation prediction over South America. The Optuna framework, based on Bayesian optimization, was employed to determine the optimal hyperparameters for the gradient-boosting scheme. A comparison between seasonal precipitation forecasting among the numerical atmospheric models used by the National Institute for Space Research (INPE, Brazil) as an operational procedure for weather/climate forecasting, gradient boosting, and deep-learning techniques is made regarding observation, with some showing better performance for the boosting scheme. Full article
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Article
Integrated Climate Action Planning (ICLAP) in Asia-Pacific Cities: Analytical Modelling for Collaborative Decision Making
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 247; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020247 - 31 Jan 2022
Abstract
While climate change has global causations and impacts, there is growing consensus on addressing the 2 °C challenge through local actions. However, at the local level, there is disintegrated knowledge on the following: (a) short-, mid- and long-term climate vulnerability, (b) economy and [...] Read more.
While climate change has global causations and impacts, there is growing consensus on addressing the 2 °C challenge through local actions. However, at the local level, there is disintegrated knowledge on the following: (a) short-, mid- and long-term climate vulnerability, (b) economy and GHG structures and their future pathways, and (c) useful mitigation and adaptation undertaken elsewhere. We evaluate these gaps through a comprehensive review of scientific literature and policy approaches of urban-climate studies in the Asia-Pacific Region. Based on the research findings, we develop a collaborative research framework of an integrated climate action planning (ICLAP) model for evidence-based decision-making tool. It adopts an innovative methodology integrating knowledge and data from diverse analytics, as follows: (a) spatial: downscaling global/regional climate scenarios to forecast local climate variability (50 km × 50 km) for 2030 (SDG target) and 2050; (b) statistical: a meta-analysis of 49 five-million-plus cities to forecast economic, energy and GHG scenarios; (c) bibliometric: a systematic review of global urban climate interventions from Google Scholar that collectively aid cities on policy inputs for mid-term climate variability, GHG profiles and available solutions at their disposal. We conclude with a discussion on scientific and policy relevance of such a tool in fostering overall urban, regional and global sustainability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urbanization and Its Climate Impact)
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Article
Seasonal Temperature Extremes in the North Eurasian Regions Depending on ENSO Phase Transitions
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 249; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020249 - 31 Jan 2022
Abstract
Seasonal anomalies of surface air temperature were analyzed for the North Eurasian regions in mid-latitudes using long-term data from the end of the 19th century with an assessment of El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) effects. In particular, temperature anomalies in the spring–summer months [...] Read more.
Seasonal anomalies of surface air temperature were analyzed for the North Eurasian regions in mid-latitudes using long-term data from the end of the 19th century with an assessment of El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) effects. In particular, temperature anomalies in the spring–summer months for the European (ER) and Asian (AR) Russian regions for different phase transitions of the ENSO phenomena were estimated using the Niño3, Niño3.4 and Niño4 indices. The largest frequency of the extremely high-temperature and drought conditions in spring–summer months in ER was detected for years starting in the El Niño phase with the transition to the La Niña phase at the end of the year. Such conditions were realized in ER in summer 2010 (“Russian heatwave”). The corresponding largest frequency of high temperature in AR was obtained for conditions with the continuation of the El Niño phase during the whole year. Such conditions in AR were noted, in particular, in the summer of 2015, with an extremely high temperature and extremely low precipitation in the Lake Baikal basin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ENSO Atmospheric Teleconnections to the Mid-to-High Latitudes)
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Article
Variations of Black Carbon Concentrations in Two Sites in Mexico: A High-Altitude National Park and a Semi-Urban Site
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 216; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020216 - 28 Jan 2022
Abstract
Black carbon (BC), a component of carbonaceous material, has an important role in the environment, and it is considered a short-lived climate forcer that plays a vital role in the global climate system. BC concentrations were analyzed during 2017 in two sites in [...] Read more.
Black carbon (BC), a component of carbonaceous material, has an important role in the environment, and it is considered a short-lived climate forcer that plays a vital role in the global climate system. BC concentrations were analyzed during 2017 in two sites in Mexico, Juriquilla and Altzomoni, which have different emission sources and atmospheric dynamics. The annual average BC concentrations in 2017 were 0.84 ± 0.70 and 0.58 ± 0.37 µg m−3 for Juriquilla and Altzomoni, respectively. The principal contributors for the highest BC concentration in Juriquilla were anthropogenic sources, while pollutants transport from nearby cities was more important for Altzomoni. Comparison between this analysis and previous reports from 2015 for both sampling sites demonstrated an increase in BC concentration. Results of this study could contribute to a better understanding of BC effects under different emission conditions and provide a scientific reference for developing BC reduction strategies over Mexico. Full article
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Article
Culturable Filamentous Fungi in the Air of Recreational Areas and Their Relationship with Bacteria and Air Pollutants during Winter
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 207; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020207 - 27 Jan 2022
Abstract
One of the greatest environmental health problems to arise in recent years is air pollution. Inorganic and organic particles are important components of air aerosol. The potential of air microbiota as an indicator of air quality is gaining increasing research interest. The aim [...] Read more.
One of the greatest environmental health problems to arise in recent years is air pollution. Inorganic and organic particles are important components of air aerosol. The potential of air microbiota as an indicator of air quality is gaining increasing research interest. The aim of the present study was to determine the relationship between the level of fungal contamination and the levels of bacteria and smog particles in outdoor air in recreational areas during the heating season. A quantitative and qualitative mycological evaluation and quantitative bacteriological evaluation of air quality in 10 selected parks were performed. The numbers of microorganisms in the air were correlated with smog levels. The mean prevalence of fungi was 18.96 ± 15.43–23.30 ± 26.70 CFU/m3 of air and the mean bacterial count was 74.06 ± 130.89–268.04 ± 126.10 CFU/m3. Among the isolated fungi, clinically significant species were identified: four species belonged to Risk Group 2, and 17 to Risk Group 1. The predominant genera were Aspergillus, Penicillium and Alternaria. The total number of bacteria demonstrated a positive correlation with the size of the park, air temperature and ozone level during sampling, and a negative correlation with humidity, pressure and smog parameters (CO, NO, NO2 and NOx). The qualitative and quantitative composition of bioaerosols can be used as a bioindicator for environmental monitoring. There is a need for more efficient monitoring of airborne pollutants and microorganisms to learn about the structure of the air biota, the mechanisms regulating their occurrence, and to identify potential threats to human health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Particulate Matter Content and Health Risk Assessment)
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Article
Interfacial Dark Aging Is an Overlooked Source of Aqueous Secondary Organic Aerosol
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 188; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020188 - 24 Jan 2022
Abstract
In this work, the relative yields of aqueous secondary organic aerosols (aqSOAs) at the air–liquid (a–l) interface are investigated between photochemical and dark aging using in situ time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS). Our results show that dark aging is an important source [...] Read more.
In this work, the relative yields of aqueous secondary organic aerosols (aqSOAs) at the air–liquid (a–l) interface are investigated between photochemical and dark aging using in situ time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS). Our results show that dark aging is an important source of aqSOAs despite a lack of photochemical drivers. Photochemical reactions of glyoxal and hydroxyl radicals (•OH) produce oligomers and cluster ions at the aqueous surface. Interestingly, different oligomers and cluster ions form intensely in the dark at the a–l interface, contrary to the notion that oligomer formation mainly depends on light irradiation. Furthermore, cluster ions form readily during dark aging and have a higher water molecule adsorption ability. This finding is supported by the observation of more frequent organic water cluster ion formation. The relative yields of water clusters in the form of protonated and hydroxide ions are presented using van Krevelen diagrams to explore the underlying formation mechanisms of aqSOAs. Large protonated and hydroxide water clusters (e.g., (H2O)nH+, 17 < n ≤ 44) have reasonable yields during UV aging. In contrast, small protonated and hydroxide water clusters (e.g., (H2O)nH+, 1 ≤ n ≤ 17) form after several hours of dark aging. Moreover, cluster ions have higher yields in dark aging, indicating the overlooked influence of dark aging interfacial products on aerosol optical properties. Molecular dynamic simulation shows that cluster ions form stably in UV and dark aging. AqSOAs molecules produced from dark and photochemical aging can enhance UV absorption of the aqueous surface, promote cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) activities, and affect radiative forcing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Insights into Secondary Organic Aerosol Formation)
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Article
Characterisation of Thunderstorms with Multiple Lightning Jumps
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 171; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020171 - 21 Jan 2022
Cited by 2
Abstract
Several works have shown that lightning jumps are precursors of severe weather in deep-convective thunderstorms. Since 2017, the Meteorological Service of Catalonia has operationally run an algorithm that identifies lightning jumps (LJs) in real time. It has resulted in being an effective tool [...] Read more.
Several works have shown that lightning jumps are precursors of severe weather in deep-convective thunderstorms. Since 2017, the Meteorological Service of Catalonia has operationally run an algorithm that identifies lightning jumps (LJs) in real time. It has resulted in being an effective tool for nowcasting severe weather with a lead time between 15 min and 120 min in advance. This time can be of high value for managing emergencies caused by severe phenomena or heavy rains. The present research focused on the events’ analysis in which more than one lightning jump occurred, searching for those elements that differentiate single warning cases. Thunderstorms producing LJs were divided into two main categories, depending on the number of jumps triggered during the life cycle. Besides, both classes were split into two main sub-types, based on the level of the LJ that occurred. Multiple LJ thunderstorms produce more Level 2—related to severe weather—jumps than Level 1—small hail or intense precipitation—while in the case of a single LJ, the opposite behaviour occurs. In general, multiple LJ thunderstorms with at least one Level 2 jump are the more intense and have a higher vertical development. Finally, lineal and well-organised thunderstorms are the more common modes in those intenser cases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drought and Precipitation Extremes)
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Article
Study of Planetary Boundary Layer, Air Pollution, Air Quality Models and Aerosol Transport Using Ceilometers in New South Wales (NSW), Australia
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 176; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020176 - 21 Jan 2022
Cited by 1
Abstract
The planetary boundary layer height (PBLH) is one of the key factors in influencing the dispersion of the air pollutants in the troposphere and, hence, the air pollutant concentration on ground level. For this reason, accurate air pollutant concentration depends on the performance [...] Read more.
The planetary boundary layer height (PBLH) is one of the key factors in influencing the dispersion of the air pollutants in the troposphere and, hence, the air pollutant concentration on ground level. For this reason, accurate air pollutant concentration depends on the performance of PBLH prediction. Recently, ceilometers, a lidar instrument to measure cloud base height, have been used by atmospheric scientists and air pollution control authorities to determine the mixing level height (MLH) in improving forecasting and understanding the evolution of aerosol layers above ground at a site. In this study, ceilometer data at an urban (Lidcombe) and a rural (Merriwa) location in New South Wales, Australia, were used to investigate the relationship of air pollutant surface concentrations and surface meteorological variables with MLH, to validate the PBLH prediction from two air quality models (CCAM-CTM and WRF-CMAQ), as well as to understand the aerosol transport from sources to the receptor point at Merriwa for the three case studies where high PM10 concentration was detected in each of the three days. The results showed that surface ozone and temperature had a positive correlation with MLH, while relative humidity had negative correlation. For other pollutants (PM10, PM2.5, NO2), no clear results were obtained, and the correlation depended on the site and regional emission characteristics. The results also showed that the PBLH prediction by the two air quality models corresponded reasonably well with the observed ceilometer data and the cause and source of high PM10 concentration at Merriwa can be found by using ceilometer MLH data to corroborate back trajectory analysis of the transport of aerosols to the receptor point at Merriwa. Of the three case studies, one had aerosol sources from the north and north west of Merriwa in remote NSW, where windblown dust is the main source, and the other two had sources from the south and south east of Merriwa, where anthropogenic sources dominate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Atmospheric Techniques, Instruments, and Modeling)
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Article
Impacts of Sea–Land Breeze Circulation on the Formation and Development of Coastal Sea Fog along the Shandong Peninsula: A Case Study
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 165; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020165 - 20 Jan 2022
Abstract
Among the China Seas, the Yellow Sea has the highest occurrence frequency of sea fog that can be categorized into widespread sea fog and coastal sea fog. In this paper, we study a typical coastal sea fog along the Shandong Peninsula that is [...] Read more.
Among the China Seas, the Yellow Sea has the highest occurrence frequency of sea fog that can be categorized into widespread sea fog and coastal sea fog. In this paper, we study a typical coastal sea fog along the Shandong Peninsula that is accompanied by sea-land breezes. Based on a series of numerical experiments conducted by the Weather Research and Forecasting model with high spatial resolution, the impacts of the sea–land breezes on the formation and development of sea fog are investigated in detail. The land breeze can act as an accelerator that enhances humidification and cooling near the coast which promotes sea fog formation during the nighttime, resulting from nearshore vapor convergence and offshore cool-air transportation jointly by the descending branch and low-level breeze of the land breeze circulation. During the daytime, the sea breeze acts as a reducer that inhibits sea fog development, including the contraction of fog area caused by onshore advection of the sea breeze on cloud liquid water, and the restraint of fog vertical growth due to warming and drying by the descending branch of the sea breeze circulation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Influence of Sea Breeze on Urban Meteorology)
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Article
Historic Storms Detected in a Changing Environment over Recent Centuries in the Belle Henriette Lagoon
Atmosphere 2022, 13(2), 151; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13020151 - 18 Jan 2022
Abstract
This paper explores extreme storms with marine flooding events in historical times. It focuses on the challenges associated with detecting these events with a degree of certainty in a changing environment. The paleoenvironmental changes which turned the Gulf of Pictons into the Belle [...] Read more.
This paper explores extreme storms with marine flooding events in historical times. It focuses on the challenges associated with detecting these events with a degree of certainty in a changing environment. The paleoenvironmental changes which turned the Gulf of Pictons into the Belle Henriette lagoon have required the reconstruction of events to be based on cored sediments. This study aims to establish how sedimentological washovers can be detected in a depositional environment that has changed profoundly over recent centuries. The Belle Henriette lagoon site is unique. Despite the profound environmental changes that have taken place, the impact of storms was well preserved in the five cores extracted. Eighteen historical extreme storms with marine floods were detected in the sediment. By cross-referencing with historical archives, thirteen storms were estimated in 1990, 1940, 1896, 1876, 1859, 1838, 1820, 1811, 1751, 1711, 1645, 1469, and 1351. Five older storms dating back to 1090, 1036, 941, 809, and 581 will also be discussed. By conducting a thorough historical review, we can conclude that these extreme storms caused significant damage and had a profound impact on the socioeconomic coastal communities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Extreme Climate Events in France)
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Article
Possible Causes of the Occurrence of a Rare Antarctic Sudden Stratospheric Warming in 2019
Atmosphere 2022, 13(1), 147; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13010147 - 17 Jan 2022
Cited by 1
Abstract
A minor Antarctic sudden stratospheric warming (SSW) with the strongest circulation changes since the first major SSW over the Antarctic was recorded in 2002 occurred in early September 2019. The diagnosis demonstrates two possible causes of this SSW. First, the tropical central Pacific [...] Read more.
A minor Antarctic sudden stratospheric warming (SSW) with the strongest circulation changes since the first major SSW over the Antarctic was recorded in 2002 occurred in early September 2019. The diagnosis demonstrates two possible causes of this SSW. First, the tropical central Pacific warming is identified, which enhanced the amplitude of tropospheric planetary wavenumber 1 (W1) in the extratropics on the seasonal time scale. Second, the impact of intraseasonal convection anomalies similar to previous studies is also suggested here. The enhanced deep convection over the South Pacific Convergence Zone (SPCZ) in late August–early September excited a Rossby wave train to deepen an anomalous ridge, which significantly and persistently strengthened the tropospheric W1. The central Pacific warming and intraseasonal convection anomalies jointly provided the conditions for the occurrence of the Antarctic SSW in 2019 on different time scales. On the other hand, the difference of the stratospheric state between the Antarctic SSWs in 2019 and 2002 may be an important reason why the 2019 event did not meet the major SSW criteria. The stratospheric state before the 2019 SSW event is somewhat not as ideal as that of the 2002 event. Vertical planetary waves are, hence, more difficult to enter into the polar stratosphere, making it more difficult to trigger major events. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Climatology)
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Article
Studies of the Dispersed Composition of Atmospheric Aerosol and Its Relationship with Small Gas Impurities in the Near-Water Layer of Lake Baikal Based on the Results of Ship Measurements in the Summer of 2020
Atmosphere 2022, 13(1), 139; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13010139 - 14 Jan 2022
Cited by 2
Abstract
The atmosphere over Lake Baikal covers a vast area (31,500 square meters) and has more significant differences in the composition and variability of gaseous and aerosol components in atmospheric air than in coastal continental areas and is still a poorly studied object. In [...] Read more.
The atmosphere over Lake Baikal covers a vast area (31,500 square meters) and has more significant differences in the composition and variability of gaseous and aerosol components in atmospheric air than in coastal continental areas and is still a poorly studied object. In recent years, the anthropogenic impact on the ecosystem of Lake Baikal has been increasing due to the development of industry in the region, the expansion of tourist infrastructure and recreational areas of the coastal zone of the lake. In addition, one of the significant sources of atmospheric pollution in the Baikal region is the emissions of smoke aerosol and trace gases from forest fires, the number of which is increasing in the region. This article presents the results of experimental studies of the dispersed composition of aerosols and gas impurities, such as ozone, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen oxides during route ship measurements in the water area of Lake Baikal in the summer of 2020. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Aerosols)
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Article
Circulation and Climate Variability in the Czech Republic between 1961 and 2020: A Comparison of Changes for Two “Normal” Periods
Atmosphere 2022, 13(1), 137; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos13010137 - 14 Jan 2022
Cited by 2
Abstract
Thirty-year periods are treated in climatology as spans with relatively representative and stable climatic patterns, which can be used for calculating climate normals. Annual and seasonal series of circulation types were used to compare two 30-year sub-periods, 1961–1990 and 1991–2020, the second one [...] Read more.
Thirty-year periods are treated in climatology as spans with relatively representative and stable climatic patterns, which can be used for calculating climate normals. Annual and seasonal series of circulation types were used to compare two 30-year sub-periods, 1961–1990 and 1991–2020, the second one being strongly influenced by recent global warming. This analysis was conducted according to the objective classification of circulation types and the climatic characteristics of sunshine duration, temperature, humidity, precipitation, and wind speed as calculated for the territory of the Czech Republic during the 1961–2020 period. For both sub-periods, their statistical characteristics were calculated, and the statistical significance of differences between them was evaluated. There was a statistically significant increase in the annual frequencies of anticyclonic circulation types and a significant decrease in cyclonic circulation types during 1991–2020 compared with 1961–1990. Generally, in both 30-year periods, significant differences in means, variability, characteristics of distribution, density functions, and linear trends appear for all climatic variables analysed except precipitation. This indicates that the recent 30-year “normal” period of 1991–2020, known to be influenced more by recent climate change, is by its climatic characteristics unrepresentative of the stable climatic patterns of previous 30-year periods. Full article
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