Articles | Volume 12, issue 2
06 Feb 2018
Research article | 06 Feb 2018
Black carbon and mineral dust in snow cover on the Tibetan Plateau
Yulan Zhang et al.
Tanguang Gao, Jie Liu, Tingjun Zhang, Yuantao Hu, Jianguo Shang, Shufa Wang, Xiongxin Xiao, Chuankun Liu, Shichang Kang, Mika Sillanpää, and Yulan Zhang
The Cryosphere Discuss.,
Preprint retractedShort summary
Understanding the interactions between groundwater and surface water in permafrost regions is essential to the understanding of flood frequencies and river water quality of high latitude/altitude basins. Thus, we analyzed the interaction between surface water and groundwater in a permafrost region in the northern Tibetan Plateau by using heat tracing methods.
Yongqin Liu, Pengcheng Fang, Bixi Guo, Mukan Ji, Pengfei Liu, Guannan Mao, Baiqing Xu, Shichang Kang, and Junzhi Liu
Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 14, 2303–2314,Short summary
Glaciers are an important pool of microorganisms, organic carbon, and nitrogen. This study constructed the first dataset of microbial abundance and total nitrogen in Tibetan Plateau (TP) glaciers and the first dataset of dissolved organic carbon in ice cores on the TP. These new data could provide valuable information for research on the glacier carbon and nitrogen cycle and help in assessing the potential impacts of glacier retreat due to global warming on downstream ecosystems.
Lukas Jansing, Lukas Papritz, Bruno Dürr, Daniel Gerstgrasser, and Michael Sprenger
Weather Clim. Dynam. Discuss.,
Preprint under review for WCDShort summary
This study presents a five-year climatology of three main Foehn types and three Deep Foehn subtypes. The main types differ in the large-scale and Alpine-scale weather conditions, the subtypes in terms of the amount and extent of precipitation on the Alpine south side. They are found to strongly affect the local meteorological characteristics at Altdorf. The study concludes by setting the new classification into a historic context.
Mukesh Rai, Shichang Kang, Junhua Yang, Maheswar Rupakheti, Dipesh Rupakheti, Lekhendra Tripathee, Yuling Hu, and Xintong Chen
Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss.,
Preprint under review for ACPShort summary
Our study revealed distinctive seasonality with the maximum and minimum aerosol concentrations during the winter and summer seasons respectively. However, interestingly summer high (AOD > 0.8) was observed over South Asia. The highest aerosols are laden over South Asia and East China within 1–2 km, however, aerosol overshooting found up to 10 km due to the deep convection process. Whereas, integrated aerosol transport for OC during spring was found to be 5 times higher than the annual mean.
Jan Clemens, Felix Ploeger, Paul Konopka, Raphael Portmann, Michael Sprenger, and Heini Wernli
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 22, 3841–3860,Short summary
Highly polluted air flows from the surface to higher levels of the atmosphere during the Asian summer monsoon. At high levels, the air is trapped within eddies. Here, we study how air masses can leave the eddy within its cutoff, how they distribute, and how their chemical composition changes. We found evidence for transport from the eddy to higher latitudes over the North Pacific and even Alaska. During transport, trace gas concentrations within cutoffs changed gradually, showing steady mixing.
Jörg Wieder, Claudia Mignani, Mario Schär, Lucie Roth, Michael Sprenger, Jan Henneberger, Ulrike Lohmann, Cyril Brunner, and Zamin A. Kanji
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 22, 3111–3130,Short summary
We investigate the variation in ice-nucleating particles (INPs) relevant for primary ice formation in mixed-phased clouds over the Alps based on simultaneous in situ observations at a mountaintop and a nearby high valley (1060 m height difference). In most cases, advection from the surrounding lower regions was responsible for changes in INP concentration, causing a diurnal cycle at the mountaintop. Our study underlines the importance of the planetary boundary layer as an INP reserve.
Huiming Lin, Yindong Tong, Chenghao Yu, Long Chen, Xiufeng Yin, Qianggong Zhang, Shichang Kang, Lun Luo, James Schauer, Benjamin de Foy, and Xuejun Wang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 22, 2651–2668,Short summary
The Tibetan Plateau is known as
The Third Poleand is generally considered to be a clean area owing to its high altitude. However, it may receive be impacted by air pollutants transported from the Indian subcontinent. Pollutants generally enter the Tibetan Plateau in several ways. Among them is the Yarlung Zangbu–Brahmaputra Grand Canyon. In this study, we identified the influence of the Indian summer monsoon on the origin, transport, and behavior of mercury in this area.
Shichang Kang, Yulan Zhang, Pengfei Chen, Junming Guo, Qianggong Zhang, Zhiyuan Cong, Susan Kaspari, Lekhendra Tripathee, Tanguang Gao, Hewen Niu, Xinyue Zhong, Xintong Chen, Zhaofu Hu, Xiaofei Li, Yang Li, Bigyan Neupane, Fangping Yan, Dipesh Rupakheti, Chaman Gul, Wei Zhang, Guangming Wu, Ling Yang, Zhaoqing Wang, and Chaoliu Li
Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 14, 683–707,Short summary
The Tibetan Plateau is important to the Earth’s climate. However, systematically observed data here are scarce. To perform more integrated and in-depth investigations of the origins and distributions of atmospheric pollutants and their impacts on cryospheric change, systematic data of black carbon and organic carbon from the atmosphere, glaciers, snow cover, precipitation, and lake sediment cores over the plateau based on the Atmospheric Pollution and Cryospheric Change program are provided.
Lukas Bösiger, Michael Sprenger, Maxi Boettcher, Hanna Joos, and Tobias Günther
Geosci. Model Dev., 15, 1079–1096,Short summary
Jet streams are coherent air flows that interact with atmospheric structures such as warm conveyor belts (WCBs) and the tropopause. Individually, these structures have a significant impact on the weather evolution. A first step towards a deeper understanding of the meteorological processes is to extract jet stream core lines, for which we develop a novel feature extraction algorithm. Based on the line geometry, we automatically detect and visualize potential interactions between WCBs and jets.
Chaman Gul, Shichang Kang, Siva Praveen Puppala, Xiaokang Wu, Cenlin He, Yangyang Xu, Inka Koch, Sher Muhammad, Rajesh Kumar, and Getachew Dubache
Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss.,
Revised manuscript under review for ACPShort summary
This work aims to understand concentrations, spatial variability, and potential source regions of light-absorbing impurities (black carbon aerosols, dust particles, and organic carbon) in the surface snow of central and western Himalayan glaciers and their impact on snow albedo, and radiative forcing.
Jinlei Chen, Shichang Kang, Wentao Du, Junming Guo, Min Xu, Yulan Zhang, Xinyue Zhong, Wei Zhang, and Jizu Chen
The Cryosphere, 15, 5473–5482,Short summary
Sea ice is retreating with rapid warming in the Arctic. It will continue and approach the worst predicted pathway released by the IPCC. The irreversible tipping point might show around 2060 when the oldest ice will have completely disappeared. It has a huge impact on human production. Ordinary merchant ships will be able to pass the Northeast Passage and Northwest Passage by the midcentury, and the opening time will advance to the next 10 years for icebreakers with moderate ice strengthening.
Wendong Ge, Junfeng Liu, Kan Yi, Jiayu Xu, Yizhou Zhang, Xiurong Hu, Jianmin Ma, Xuejun Wang, Yi Wan, Jianying Hu, Zhaobin Zhang, Xilong Wang, and Shu Tao
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 21, 16093–16120,Short summary
Compared with the observations, the results incorporating detailed cloud aqueous-phase chemistry greatly reduced SO2 overestimation. The biases in annual simulated SO2 concentrations (or mixing ratios) decreased by 46 %, 41 %, and 22 % in Europe, the USA, and China, respectively. Fe chemistry and HOx chemistry contributed more to SO2 oxidation than N chemistry. Higher concentrations of soluble Fe and higher pH values could further enhance the oxidation capacity.
Philippe Besson, Luise J. Fischer, Sebastian Schemm, and Michael Sprenger
Weather Clim. Dynam., 2, 991–1009,Short summary
The strongest cyclone intensification is associated with a strong dry-dynamical forcing. Moreover, strong forcing and strong intensification correspond to a tendency for poleward cyclone propagation, which occurs in distinct regions in the Northern Hemisphere. There is a clear spatial pattern in the occurrence of certain forcing combinations. This implies a fundamental relationship between dry-dynamical processes and the intensification as well as the propagation of extratropical cyclones.
Yongkang Xue, Tandong Yao, Aaron A. Boone, Ismaila Diallo, Ye Liu, Xubin Zeng, William K. M. Lau, Shiori Sugimoto, Qi Tang, Xiaoduo Pan, Peter J. van Oevelen, Daniel Klocke, Myung-Seo Koo, Tomonori Sato, Zhaohui Lin, Yuhei Takaya, Constantin Ardilouze, Stefano Materia, Subodh K. Saha, Retish Senan, Tetsu Nakamura, Hailan Wang, Jing Yang, Hongliang Zhang, Mei Zhao, Xin-Zhong Liang, J. David Neelin, Frederic Vitart, Xin Li, Ping Zhao, Chunxiang Shi, Weidong Guo, Jianping Tang, Miao Yu, Yun Qian, Samuel S. P. Shen, Yang Zhang, Kun Yang, Ruby Leung, Yuan Qiu, Daniele Peano, Xin Qi, Yanling Zhan, Michael A. Brunke, Sin Chan Chou, Michael Ek, Tianyi Fan, Hong Guan, Hai Lin, Shunlin Liang, Helin Wei, Shaocheng Xie, Haoran Xu, Weiping Li, Xueli Shi, Paulo Nobre, Yan Pan, Yi Qin, Jeff Dozier, Craig R. Ferguson, Gianpaolo Balsamo, Qing Bao, Jinming Feng, Jinkyu Hong, Songyou Hong, Huilin Huang, Duoying Ji, Zhenming Ji, Shichang Kang, Yanluan Lin, Weiguang Liu, Ryan Muncaster, Patricia de Rosnay, Hiroshi G. Takahashi, Guiling Wang, Shuyu Wang, Weicai Wang, Xu Zhou, and Yuejian Zhu
Geosci. Model Dev., 14, 4465–4494,Short summary
The subseasonal prediction of extreme hydroclimate events such as droughts/floods has remained stubbornly low for years. This paper presents a new international initiative which, for the first time, introduces spring land surface temperature anomalies over high mountains to improve precipitation prediction through remote effects of land–atmosphere interactions. More than 40 institutions worldwide are participating in this effort. The experimental protocol and preliminary results are presented.
Raphael Portmann, Michael Sprenger, and Heini Wernli
Weather Clim. Dynam., 2, 507–534,Short summary
We explore the three-dimensional life cycle of cyclonic structures (so-called PV cutoffs) near the tropopause. PV cutoffs are frequent weather systems in the extratropics that lead to high-impact weather. However, many unknowns exist regarding their evolution. We present a new method to track PV cutoffs as 3D objects in reanalysis data by following air parcels along the flow. We study the climatological life cycles of PV cutoffs in detail and propose a classification into three types.
Kun Wang, Shohei Hattori, Mang Lin, Sakiko Ishino, Becky Alexander, Kazuki Kamezaki, Naohiro Yoshida, and Shichang Kang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 21, 8357–8376,Short summary
Sulfate aerosols play an important climatic role and exert adverse effects on the ecological environment and human health. In this study, we present the triple oxygen isotopic composition of sulfate from the Mt. Everest region, southern Tibetan Plateau, and decipher the formation mechanisms of atmospheric sulfate in this pristine environment. The results indicate the important role of the S(IV) + O3 pathway in atmospheric sulfate formation promoted by conditions of high cloud water pH.
Michael A. Barnes, Thando Ndarana, Michael Sprenger, and Willem A. Landman
Weather Clim. Dynam. Discuss.,
Revised manuscript has not been submittedShort summary
Stratospheric air can at times intrude into the troposphere and is associated with cyclonic development throughout the atmosphere and at the surface. Through a highly idealised, systematic approach, the effect different intrusion characteristics have on surface cyclones are investigated. The proximity of stratospheric intrusions surface is shown to be the main contributing factor to the development of associated surface cyclones, confirming the results of recent cut-off low climatologies.
Maxi Boettcher, Andreas Schäfler, Michael Sprenger, Harald Sodemann, Stefan Kaufmann, Christiane Voigt, Hans Schlager, Donato Summa, Paolo Di Girolamo, Daniele Nerini, Urs Germann, and Heini Wernli
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 21, 5477–5498,Short summary
Warm conveyor belts (WCBs) are important airstreams in extratropical cyclones, often leading to the formation of intense precipitation. We present a case study that involves aircraft, lidar and radar observations of water and clouds in a WCB ascending from western Europe across the Alps towards the Baltic Sea during the field campaigns HyMeX and T-NAWDEX-Falcon in October 2012. A probabilistic trajectory measure and an airborne tracer experiment were used to confirm the long pathway of the WCB.
Yikun Yang, Chuanfeng Zhao, Quan Wang, Zhiyuan Cong, Xingchuan Yang, and Hao Fan
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 21, 4849–4868,Short summary
The occurrence frequency of different aerosol types and aerosol optical depth over the Arctic, Antarctic and Tibetan Plateau (TP) show distinctive spatiotemporal differences. The aerosol extinction coefficient in the Arctic and TP has a broad vertical distribution, while that of the Antarctic has obvious seasonal differences. Compared with the Antarctic, the Arctic and TP are vulnerable to surrounding pollutants, and the source of air masses has obvious seasonal variations.
Melissa L. Breeden, Amy H. Butler, John R. Albers, Michael Sprenger, and Andrew O'Neil Langford
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 21, 2781–2794,Short summary
Prior research has found a maximum in deep stratosphere-to-troposphere mass/ozone transport over the western United States in boreal spring, which can enhance surface ozone concentrations, reducing air quality. We find that the winter-to-summer evolution of the north Pacific jet increases the frequency of stratospheric intrusions that drive transport, helping explain the observed maximum. The El Niño–Southern Oscillation affects the timing of the spring jet transition and therefore transport.
Annika Oertel, Michael Sprenger, Hanna Joos, Maxi Boettcher, Heike Konow, Martin Hagen, and Heini Wernli
Weather Clim. Dynam., 2, 89–110,Short summary
Convection embedded in the stratiform cloud band of strongly ascending airstreams in extratropical cyclones (so-called warm conveyor belts) can influence not only surface precipitation but also the upper-tropospheric potential vorticity (PV) and waveguide. The comparison of intense vs. moderate embedded convection shows that its strength alone is not a reliable measure for upper-tropospheric PV modification. Instead, characteristics of the ambient flow co-determine its dynamical significance.
Emmanouil Flaounas, Matthias Röthlisberger, Maxi Boettcher, Michael Sprenger, and Heini Wernli
Weather Clim. Dynam., 2, 71–88,Short summary
In this study we identify the wettest seasons globally and address their meteorological characteristics. We show that in different regions the wettest seasons occur in different times of the year and result from either unusually high frequencies of wet days and/or daily extremes. These high frequencies can be largely attributed to four specific weather systems, especially cyclones. Our analysis uses a thoroughly explained, novel methodology that could also be applied to climate models.
Claudia Mignani, Jörg Wieder, Michael A. Sprenger, Zamin A. Kanji, Jan Henneberger, Christine Alewell, and Franz Conen
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 21, 657–664,Short summary
Most precipitation above land starts with ice in clouds. It is promoted by extremely rare particles. Some ice-nucleating particles (INPs) cause cloud droplets to already freeze above −15°C, a temperature at which many clouds begin to snow. We found that the abundance of such INPs among other particles of similar size is highest in precipitating air masses and lowest when air carries desert dust. This brings us closer to understanding the interactions between land, clouds, and precipitation.
Stefan Rüdisühli, Michael Sprenger, David Leutwyler, Christoph Schär, and Heini Wernli
Weather Clim. Dynam., 1, 675–699,Short summary
Most precipitation over Europe is linked to low-pressure systems, cold fronts, warm fronts, or high-pressure systems. Based on a massive computer simulation able to resolve thunderstorms, we quantify in detail how much precipitation these weather systems produced during 2000–2008. We find distinct seasonal and regional differences, such as fronts precipitating a lot in fall and winter over the North Atlantic but high-pressure systems mostly in summer over the continent by way of thunderstorms.
Raphael Portmann, Juan Jesús González-Alemán, Michael Sprenger, and Heini Wernli
Weather Clim. Dynam., 1, 597–615,Short summary
In September 2018 an intense Mediterranean cyclone with structural similarities to a hurricane, a so-called medicane, caused severe damage in Greece. Its development was uncertain, even just a few days in advance. The reason for this was uncertainties in the jet stream over the North Atlantic 3 d prior to cyclogenesis that propagated into the Mediterranean. They led to an uncertain position of the upper-level disturbance and, as a result, of the position and thermal structure of the cyclone.
Hanin Binder, Maxi Boettcher, Hanna Joos, Michael Sprenger, and Heini Wernli
Weather Clim. Dynam., 1, 577–595,Short summary
Warm conveyor belts (WCBs) are important cloud- and precipitation-producing airstreams in extratropical cyclones. By combining satellite observations with model data from a new reanalysis dataset, this study provides detailed observational insight into the vertical cloud structure of WCBs. We find that the reanalyses essentially capture the observed cloud pattern, but the observations reveal mesoscale structures not resolved by the temporally and spatially much coarser-resolution model data.
Pengfei Han, Ning Zeng, Tom Oda, Xiaohui Lin, Monica Crippa, Dabo Guan, Greet Janssens-Maenhout, Xiaolin Ma, Zhu Liu, Yuli Shan, Shu Tao, Haikun Wang, Rong Wang, Lin Wu, Xiao Yun, Qiang Zhang, Fang Zhao, and Bo Zheng
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 20, 11371–11385,Short summary
An accurate estimation of China’s fossil-fuel CO2 emissions (FFCO2) is significant for quantification of carbon budget and emissions reductions towards the Paris Agreement goals. Here we assessed 9 global and regional inventories. Our findings highlight the significance of using locally measured coal emission factors. We call on the enhancement of physical measurements for validation and provide comprehensive information for inventory, monitoring, modeling, assimilation, and reducing emissions.
Sebastian Schemm, Stefan Rüdisühli, and Michael Sprenger
Weather Clim. Dynam., 1, 459–479,Short summary
Troughs and ridges are ubiquitous flow features in the upper troposphere and are centerpiece elements of weather and climate research. A novel method is introduced to identify and track the life cycle of troughs and ridges and their orientation. The aim is to close the existing gap between methods that detect the initiation phase and methods that detect the decaying phase of Rossby wave development. Global climatologies, the influence of ENSO and Lagrangian characteristics are discussed.
Shuang Yi, Chunqiao Song, Kosuke Heki, Shichang Kang, Qiuyu Wang, and Le Chang
The Cryosphere, 14, 2267–2281,Short summary
High-Asia glaciers have been observed to be retreating the fastest in the southeastern Tibeten Plateau, where vast amounts of glacier and snow feed the streamflow of the Brahmaputra. Here, we provide the first monthly glacier and snow mass balance during 2002–2017 based on satellite gravimetry. The results confirm previous long-term decreases but reveal strong seasonal variations. This work helps resolve previous divergent model estimates and underlines the importance of meltwater.
Minli Wang, Yiqun Chen, Heyun Fu, Xiaolei Qu, Bengang Li, Shu Tao, and Dongqiang Zhu
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 20, 7941–7954,Short summary
The mechanism and factors controlling the hygroscopicity of black-carbon-containing particles (BCPs) from different carbon sources are not well understood. We thoroughly characterized the chemical and compositional properties of 15 samples of BCPs from different sources (wood, herb, and soot) and further investigated their hygroscopicity. Depending on the carbon source, organic carbon and dissolved mineral contents were key determinants of the equilibrium and kinetics of water uptake by BCPs.
Nicolas Jullien, Étienne Vignon, Michael Sprenger, Franziska Aemisegger, and Alexis Berne
The Cryosphere, 14, 1685–1702,Short summary
Although snowfall is the main input of water to the Antarctic ice sheet, snowflakes are often evaporated by dry and fierce winds near the surface of the continent. The amount of snow that actually reaches the ground is therefore considerably reduced. By analyzing the position of cyclones and fronts as well as by back-tracing the atmospheric moisture pathway towards Antarctica, this study explains in which meteorological conditions snowfall is either completely evaporated or reaches the ground.
Meixin Zhang, Chun Zhao, Zhiyuan Cong, Qiuyan Du, Mingyue Xu, Yu Chen, Ming Chen, Rui Li, Yunfei Fu, Lei Zhong, Shichang Kang, Delong Zhao, and Yan Yang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 20, 5923–5943,Short summary
Analysis of multiple numerical experiments over the Himalayas and Tibetan Plateau (TP) shows that the complex topography results in 50 % stronger overall cross-Himalayan transport during the pre-monsoon season primarily due to the strengthened efficiency of near-surface meridional transport towards the TP, enhanced wind speed in some valleys and deeper valley channels associated with larger transported BC mass volume, which leads to 30–50 % stronger BC radiative heating over the TP.
Annika Oertel, Maxi Boettcher, Hanna Joos, Michael Sprenger, and Heini Wernli
Weather Clim. Dynam., 1, 127–153,Short summary
Warm conveyor belts (WCBs) are important, mainly stratiform cloud forming airstreams in extratropical cyclones that can include embedded convection. This WCB case study systematically compares the characteristics of convective vs. slantwise ascent of the WCB. We find that embedded convection leads to regions of significantly stronger precipitation. Moreover, it strongly modifies the potential vorticity distribution in the lower and upper troposphere, where its also influences the waveguide.
Si Li, Tao Huang, Jingyue Mo, Jixiang Li, Xiaodong Zhang, Jiao Du, Shu Tao, Junfeng Liu, Wanyanhan Jiang, Lulu Lian, Hong Gao, Xiaoxuan Mao, Yuan Zhao, and Jianmin Ma
Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss.,
Revised manuscript not acceptedShort summary
Wind power provides clean energy and gets rapid development worldwide in the past decades, which helps to reduce air pollutants and CO2 emissions. This study shows that, because wind farm alters underlying surface characteristics and spinning turbine rotors generate atmospheric turbulence, the altered winds and temperatures forced by turbulence affect transport and diffusion of air pollutants near and hundreds km downstream of the wind farm, bringing uncertainties to the air quality forecast.
Matthias Röthlisberger, Michael Sprenger, Emmanouil Flaounas, Urs Beyerle, and Heini Wernli
Weather Clim. Dynam., 1, 45–62,Short summary
In this study we quantify how much the coldest, middle and hottest third of all days during extremely hot summers contribute to their respective seasonal mean anomaly. This
extreme-summer substructurevaries substantially across the Northern Hemisphere and is directly related to the local physical drivers of extreme summers. Furthermore, comparing re-analysis (i.e. measurement-based) and climate model extreme-summer substructures reveals a remarkable level of agreement.
Thomas Trickl, Hannes Vogelmann, Ludwig Ries, and Michael Sprenger
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 20, 243–266,Short summary
Ozone transfer from the stratosphere to the troposphere seems to to have grown over the past decade, parallel to global warming. Lidar measurements, carried out in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, between 2007 and 2016 show a considerable stratospheric influence in the free troposphere over these sites, with observations of stratospheric layers in the troposphere on 84 % of the measurement days. This high fraction is almost reached also in North America, but frequently not throughout the year.
Xiongxin Xiao, Tingjun Zhang, Xinyue Zhong, Xiaodong Li, and Yuxing Li
The Cryosphere Discuss.,
Manuscript not accepted for further reviewShort summary
Seasonal snow cover is an important component of the climate system and global water cycle that stores large amounts of freshwater. Our research attempts to develop a long-term Northern Hemisphere daily snow depth and snow water equivalent product data using a new algorithm applying in historical passive microwave dataset from 1992 to 2016. Our further analysis showed that snow cover has a significant declining trend across the Northern Hemisphere, especially beginning in the new century.
Jun Zhu, Xiangao Xia, Huizheng Che, Jun Wang, Zhiyuan Cong, Tianliang Zhao, Shichang Kang, Xuelei Zhang, Xingna Yu, and Yanlin Zhang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 14637–14656,Short summary
The long-term temporal–spatial variations of the aerosol optical properties over the Tibetan Plateau (TP) based on the multiple ground-based sun photometer sites and the MODIS product are presented. Besides, the aerosol pollution and aerosol transport processes over the TP are also analyzed by the observations and models. The results in this region could help reduce the assessment uncertainties of aerosol radiative forcing and provide more information on aerosol transportation.
Xinghua Zhang, Jianzhong Xu, Shichang Kang, Qi Zhang, and Junying Sun
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 7897–7911,Short summary
Highly time resolved chemistry and sources of PM1 were measured by an Aerodyne HR-ToF-AMS at Waliguan Baseline Observatory, a high-altitude background station at the northeastern edge of Qinghai–Tibet Plateau (QTP), during summer 2017. Relatively higher mass concentration of PM1 and dominant sulfate contribution were observed in this site compared to those at other high-elevation sites in the southern or central QTP, indicating the different aerosol sources between them.
Zongbo Shi, Tuan Vu, Simone Kotthaus, Roy M. Harrison, Sue Grimmond, Siyao Yue, Tong Zhu, James Lee, Yiqun Han, Matthias Demuzere, Rachel E. Dunmore, Lujie Ren, Di Liu, Yuanlin Wang, Oliver Wild, James Allan, W. Joe Acton, Janet Barlow, Benjamin Barratt, David Beddows, William J. Bloss, Giulia Calzolai, David Carruthers, David C. Carslaw, Queenie Chan, Lia Chatzidiakou, Yang Chen, Leigh Crilley, Hugh Coe, Tie Dai, Ruth Doherty, Fengkui Duan, Pingqing Fu, Baozhu Ge, Maofa Ge, Daobo Guan, Jacqueline F. Hamilton, Kebin He, Mathew Heal, Dwayne Heard, C. Nicholas Hewitt, Michael Hollaway, Min Hu, Dongsheng Ji, Xujiang Jiang, Rod Jones, Markus Kalberer, Frank J. Kelly, Louisa Kramer, Ben Langford, Chun Lin, Alastair C. Lewis, Jie Li, Weijun Li, Huan Liu, Junfeng Liu, Miranda Loh, Keding Lu, Franco Lucarelli, Graham Mann, Gordon McFiggans, Mark R. Miller, Graham Mills, Paul Monk, Eiko Nemitz, Fionna O'Connor, Bin Ouyang, Paul I. Palmer, Carl Percival, Olalekan Popoola, Claire Reeves, Andrew R. Rickard, Longyi Shao, Guangyu Shi, Dominick Spracklen, David Stevenson, Yele Sun, Zhiwei Sun, Shu Tao, Shengrui Tong, Qingqing Wang, Wenhua Wang, Xinming Wang, Xuejun Wang, Zifang Wang, Lianfang Wei, Lisa Whalley, Xuefang Wu, Zhijun Wu, Pinhua Xie, Fumo Yang, Qiang Zhang, Yanli Zhang, Yuanhang Zhang, and Mei Zheng
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 7519–7546,Short summary
APHH-Beijing is a collaborative international research programme to study the sources, processes and health effects of air pollution in Beijing. This introduction to the special issue provides an overview of (i) the APHH-Beijing programme, (ii) the measurement and modelling activities performed as part of it and (iii) the air quality and meteorological conditions during joint intensive field campaigns as a core activity within APHH-Beijing.
Yilong Wang, Philippe Ciais, Grégoire Broquet, François-Marie Bréon, Tomohiro Oda, Franck Lespinas, Yasjka Meijer, Armin Loescher, Greet Janssens-Maenhout, Bo Zheng, Haoran Xu, Shu Tao, Kevin R. Gurney, Geoffrey Roest, Diego Santaren, and Yongxian Su
Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 11, 687–703,Short summary
We address the question of the global characterization of fossil fuel CO2 emission hotspots that may cause coherent XCO2 plumes in space-borne CO2 images, based on the ODIAC global high-resolution 1 km fossil fuel emission data product. For space imagery with 0.5 ppm precision for a single XCO2 measurement, a total of 11 314 hotspots are identified, covering 72 % of the global emissions. These hotspots define the targets for the purpose of monitoring fossil fuel CO2 emissions from space.
Bojan Škerlak, Stephan Pfahl, Michael Sprenger, and Heini Wernli
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 6535–6549,Short summary
Upper-level fronts are often associated with the rapid transport of stratospheric air to the lower troposphere, leading to significantly enhanced ozone concentrations. This paper considers the multi-scale nature that is needed to bring stratospheric air down to the surface. The final transport step to the surface can be related to frontal zones and the associated vertical winds or to near-horizontal tracer transport followed by entrainment into a growing planetary boundary layer.
Xiongxin Xiao, Tingjun Zhang, Xinyue Zhong, Xiaodong Li, and Yuxing Li
The Cryosphere Discuss.,
Revised manuscript not acceptedShort summary
Seasonal snow cover is an important component of the climate system and global water cycle that stores large amounts of freshwater. Our research attempts to develop a long-term Northern Hemisphere daily snow depth and snow water equivalent products using a new algorithm applying in historical passive microwave data sets from 1992 to 2016. Our further analysis showed the snow cover has a significant declining trend across the Northern Hemisphere, especially beginning at the new century.
Xin Wan, Shichang Kang, Maheswar Rupakheti, Qianggong Zhang, Lekhendra Tripathee, Junming Guo, Pengfei Chen, Dipesh Rupakheti, Arnico K. Panday, Mark G. Lawrence, Kimitaka Kawamura, and Zhiyuan Cong
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 2725–2747,Short summary
The sources of primary and secondary aerosols in the Hindu Kush–Himalayan–Tibetan Plateau region are not well known. Organic molecular tracers are useful for aerosol source apportionment. The characterization of molecular tracers were first systemically investigated and the contribution from primary and secondary sources to carbonaceous aerosols was estimated in the Kathmandu Valley. Our results demonstrate that biomass burning contributed a significant fraction to OC in the Kathmandu Valley.
Jiayu Xu, Jiachen Zhang, Junfeng Liu, Kan Yi, Songlin Xiang, Xiurong Hu, Yuqing Wang, Shu Tao, and George Ban-Weiss
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 1587–1603,Short summary
In this study, we fully describe black carbon wet removal coupled with all cloud processes from a cloud microphysics scheme in a climate model and conduct sensitivity simulations that turn off each cloud process one at a time. We find that convective scavenging, aerosol activation, ice nucleation, evaporation of rain–snow, and below-cloud scavenging dominate wet deposition of BC. In addition, the range of direct radiative forcing derived from sensitivity simulations is large, 0.09–0.33 W m−2.
Yanqing An, Jianzhong Xu, Lin Feng, Xinghua Zhang, Yanmei Liu, Shichang Kang, Bin Jiang, and Yuhong Liao
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 1115–1128,Short summary
Detailed molecular chemical composition of water-soluble organic matter in the Himalayas was characterized by positive electrospray ionization Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry for the first time. Many products formed from biogenic volatile organic compounds and biomass-burning-emitted compounds were found in the organic compounds, suggesting the important contribution of these two sources in the Himalayas.
Zhiwen Dong, Shichang Kang, Dahe Qin, Yaping Shao, Sven Ulbrich, and Xiang Qin
The Cryosphere, 12, 3877–3890,Short summary
This study aimed to provide a first and unique record of physicochemical properties and mixing states of LAPs at the glacier and atmosphere interface over the northeastern Tibetan Plateau to determine the individual LAPs' structure aging and mixing state changes through the atmospheric deposition process from atmosphere to glacier–snowpack surface, thereby helping to characterize the LAPs' radiative forcing and climate effects in the cryosphere region.
Zhiyuan Cong, Shaopeng Gao, Wancang Zhao, Xin Wang, Guangming Wu, Yulan Zhang, Shichang Kang, Yongqin Liu, and Junfeng Ji
The Cryosphere, 12, 3177–3186,Short summary
Cryoconites from glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau and surrounding area were studied for iron oxides. We found that goethite is the predominant iron oxide form. Using the abundance, speciation and optical properties of iron oxides, the total light absorption was quantitatively attributed to goethite, hematite, black carbon and organic matter. Such findings are essential to understand the relative significance of anthropogenic and natural impacts.
Xintong Chen, Shichang Kang, Zhiyuan Cong, Junhua Yang, and Yaoming Ma
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 12859–12875,Short summary
To understand the impact of transboundary atmospheric black carbon on the Mt. Everest region and depict the transport pathways in different spatiotemporal scales, we first investigated the concentration level, temporal variation, and sources of black carbon based on high-resolution (2-year) measurements at Qomolangma (Mt. Everest) Station (4276 m a.s.l.). Next, the WRF-Chem simulations were used to reveal the transport mechanisms of black carbon from southern Asia to the Mt. Everest region.
Cenlin He, Mark G. Flanner, Fei Chen, Michael Barlage, Kuo-Nan Liou, Shichang Kang, Jing Ming, and Yun Qian
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 11507–11527,Short summary
Snow albedo plays a key role in the Earth and climate system. It can be affected by impurities and snow properties. This study implements new parameterizations into a widely used snow model to account for effects of snow shape and black carbon–snow mixing state on snow albedo reduction in the Tibetan Plateau. This study points toward an imperative need for extensive measurements and improved model characterization of snow grain shape and aerosol–snow mixing state in Tibet and elsewhere.
Xiufeng Yin, Shichang Kang, Benjamin de Foy, Yaoming Ma, Yindong Tong, Wei Zhang, Xuejun Wang, Guoshuai Zhang, and Qianggong Zhang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 10557–10574,Short summary
Total gaseous mercury concentrations were measured at Nam Co Station on the inland Tibetan Plateau for ~ 3 years. The mean concentration of TGM during the entire monitoring period was 1.33 ± 0.24 ngm-3, ranking it the lowest in China and indicating the pristine atmospheric environment of the inland Tibetan Plateau. Variation of TGM at Nam Co was affected by regional surface reemission, vertical mixing and long-range transported atmospheric mercury, which was associated with the Indian monsoon.
Zirui Liu, Wenkang Gao, Yangchun Yu, Bo Hu, Jinyuan Xin, Yang Sun, Lili Wang, Gehui Wang, Xinhui Bi, Guohua Zhang, Honghui Xu, Zhiyuan Cong, Jun He, Jingsha Xu, and Yuesi Wang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 8849–8871,Short summary
We have established a national-level network (CARE-China) that conducted continuous monitoring of PM2.5 and its chemical compositions in China. Our analysis reveals the spatial and seasonal variabilities of the urban and background aerosol species and their contributions to the PM2.5 budget. The integration of data provided an extensive spatial coverage of fine-particle concentrations and could be used to validate model results and implement effective air pollution control strategies.
Hewen Niu, Shichang Kang, Hailong Wang, Rudong Zhang, Xixi Lu, Yun Qian, Rukumesh Paudyal, Shijin Wang, Xiaofei Shi, and Xingguo Yan
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 6441–6460,Short summary
Deposition of light-absorbing carbonaceous aerosol on the surface of glaciers can greatly alter the energy fluxes of glaciers. Two years of continuous observations of carbonaceous aerosols in a glacierized region are analyzed. We mainly studied the light absorption properties of carbonaceous aerosol and have employed a global aerosol–climate model to estimate source attributions of atmospheric black carbon.
D. Rupakheti, S. Kang, Z. Cong, M. Rupakheti, L. Tripathee, A. K. Panday, and B. Holben
Int. Arch. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci., XLII-3, 1493–1497,
Chaman Gul, Siva Praveen Puppala, Shichang Kang, Bhupesh Adhikary, Yulan Zhang, Shaukat Ali, Yang Li, and Xiaofei Li
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 4981–5000,Short summary
Snow and ice samples were collected from six glaciers and multiple mountain valleys from northern Pakistan. Samples were analyzed for black carbon and water-insoluble organic carbon. Relatively high concentrations of black carbon, organic carbon, and dust were reported. Snow albedo and radiative forcing were estimated for the snow samples. Possible source regions of pollutants were identified through various techniques.
Xinghua Zhang, Jianzhong Xu, Shichang Kang, Yanmei Liu, and Qi Zhang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 4617–4638,Short summary
Highly time and chemically resolved submicron aerosol properties were characterized online for the first time in a high-altitude site (Qomolangma station, 4276 m a.s.l.) in the northern Himalayas by using the Aerodyne HR-ToF-AMS. Biomass burning plumes were frequently observed and the dynamic processes (emissions, transport, and chemical processing) were characterized. The source and chemical composition of organic aerosol were further elucidated using positive matrix factorization analysis.
Yilong Wang, Grégoire Broquet, Philippe Ciais, Frédéric Chevallier, Felix Vogel, Lin Wu, Yi Yin, Rong Wang, and Shu Tao
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 4229–4250,Short summary
This paper assesses the potential of atmospheric 14CO2 observations and a global inversion system to solve for fossil fuel CO2 (FFCO2) emissions in Europe. The estimate of monthly emission budgets is largely improved in high emitting regions. The results are sensitive to the observation network and the prior uncertainty. Using a high-resolution transport model and a systematic evaluation of the uncertainty in current emission inventories should improve the potential to retrieve FFCO2 emissions.
Haipeng Wang, Jianhui Chen, Shengda Zhang, David D. Zhang, Zongli Wang, Qinghai Xu, Shengqian Chen, Shijin Wang, Shichang Kang, and Fahu Chen
Clim. Past, 14, 383–396,Short summary
The chironomid-inferred temperature record from Gonghai Lake exhibits a stepwise decreasing trend since 4 ka. A cold event in the Era of Disunity, the Sui-Tang Warm Period, the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age can all be recognized in our record, as well as in many other temperature reconstructions in China. Local wars in Shanxi Province, documented in the historical literature during the past 2700 years, are statistically significantly correlated with changes in temperature.
Yuzhe Wang, Tong Zhang, Jiawen Ren, Xiang Qin, Yushuo Liu, Weijun Sun, Jizu Chen, Minghu Ding, Wentao Du, and Dahe Qin
The Cryosphere, 12, 851–866,Short summary
We combine in situ measurements and an ice flow model to study the thermomechanical features of Laohugou Glacier No. 12, the largest valley glacier on Qilian Shan. We reveal that this glacier, once considered to be extremely continental or cold, is actually polythermal with a lower temperate ice layer over a large region of the ablation area. Strain heating and latent heat due to meltwater refreezing in the firn zone play critical roles in controlling the thermal regime of this glacier.
Thomas Trickl, Hannes Vogelmann, Ludwig Ries, Hans-Eckhart Scheel, and Michael Sprenger
Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss.,
Revised manuscript not accepted
Xinyue Zhong, Tingjun Zhang, Shichang Kang, Kang Wang, Lei Zheng, Yuantao Hu, and Huijuan Wang
The Cryosphere, 12, 227–245,
Jianzhong Xu, Qi Zhang, Jinsen Shi, Xinlei Ge, Conghui Xie, Junfeng Wang, Shichang Kang, Ruixiong Zhang, and Yuhang Wang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 427–443,Short summary
This manuscript presents results from a comprehensive field study using an HR-AMS coupled with a suite of other instruments in central Tibetan Plateau. The study discusses the chemical composition, sources, and processes of submicron aerosol during the transition from pre-monsoon to monsoon. Organic aerosol was overall highly oxidized during the entire study with higher O / C ratios during the pre-monsoon period. Sensitivity of air pollution transport with synoptic process was also evaluated.
Lin Feng, Yanqing An, Jianzhong Xu, Shichang Kang, Xiaofei Li, Yongqiang Zhou, Yunlin Zhang, Bin Jiang, and Yuhong Liao
Revised manuscript not accepted
Chaoliu Li, Fangping Yan, Shichang Kang, Pengfei Chen, Xiaowen Han, Zhaofu Hu, Guoshuai Zhang, Ye Hong, Shaopeng Gao, Bin Qu, Zhejing Zhu, Jiwei Li, Bing Chen, and Mika Sillanpää
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 11899–11912,Short summary
In this study, we found, due to contribution of carbonates, previously reported BC concentration in atmosphere of the Himalayas and Tibetan Plateau (HTP) were overestimated by around 39–52 %. Meanwhile, we found BC deposition of lake cores overestimated the atmospheric deposition of BC in the HTP; BC depositions of glacier region reflected actual values of 17.9 ± 5.3 mg m−2 a−1. The above results are critical for studying atmospheric distribution and chemical transport of BC in and around the HTP.
Xiufeng Yin, Shichang Kang, Benjamin de Foy, Zhiyuan Cong, Jiali Luo, Lang Zhang, Yaoming Ma, Guoshuai Zhang, Dipesh Rupakheti, and Qianggong Zhang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 11293–11311,Short summary
We presented 5-year surface ozone measurements at Nam Co in the inland Tibetan Plateau and made a synthesis comparison of diurnal and seasonal patterns on regional and hemispheric scales. Surface ozone at Nam Co is mainly dominated by natural processes and is less influenced by stratospheric intrusions and human activities than on the rim of the Tibetan Plateau. Ozone at Nam Co is representative of background that is valuable for studying ozone-related effects on large scales.
Dipesh Rupakheti, Bhupesh Adhikary, Puppala Siva Praveen, Maheswar Rupakheti, Shichang Kang, Khadak Singh Mahata, Manish Naja, Qianggong Zhang, Arnico Kumar Panday, and Mark G. Lawrence
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 11041–11063,Short summary
For the first time, atmospheric composition was monitored during pre-monsoon season of 2013 at Lumbini (UNESCO world heritage site as birthplace of the Buddha). PM and O3 frequently exceeded WHO guidelines. Pollution concentration, diurnal characteristics and influence of open burning on air quality in Lumbini were investigated. Potential source regions were also identified. Results show that air pollution at this site is of a great concern, requiring prompt attention for mitigation.
Tanguang Gao, Jie Liu, Tingjun Zhang, Yuantao Hu, Jianguo Shang, Shufa Wang, Xiongxin Xiao, Chuankun Liu, Shichang Kang, Mika Sillanpää, and Yulan Zhang
The Cryosphere Discuss.,
Preprint retractedShort summary
Understanding the interactions between groundwater and surface water in permafrost regions is essential to the understanding of flood frequencies and river water quality of high latitude/altitude basins. Thus, we analyzed the interaction between surface water and groundwater in a permafrost region in the northern Tibetan Plateau by using heat tracing methods.
Xin Wan, Shichang Kang, Quanlian Li, Dipesh Rupakheti, Qianggong Zhang, Junming Guo, Pengfei Chen, Lekhendra Tripathee, Maheswar Rupakheti, Arnico K. Panday, Wu Wang, Kimitaka Kawamura, Shaopeng Gao, Guangming Wu, and Zhiyuan Cong
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 8867–8885,Short summary
Biomass burning (BB) tracers in the aerosols in Lumbini, northern IGP, were studied for the first time. The levoglucosan was the predominant tracer and BB significantly contributed to the air quality in Lumbini. Mixed crop residues and hardwood were main burning materials. BB emissions constituted large fraction of OC, especially during the post-monsoon season. The sources of BB aerosols in Lumbini varies seasonally due to the influence of local emissions and long-range transport.
Kan Yi, Junfeng Liu, George Ban-Weiss, Jiachen Zhang, Wei Tao, Yanli Cheng, and Shu Tao
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 8771–8788,Short summary
In this study, we find that SST increases of a specific ocean in the Northern Hemisphere tend to increase summertime surface O3 concentrations over upwind continents while reducing those over downwind regions. It also promotes a more stagnant climate, which tends to suppress O3 long-range transport. Our findings indicate a robust linkage between basin-scale SST variability and continental surface O3 pollution, which should be taken into account for air quality management.
Xiaoqing Peng, Tingjun Zhang, Oliver W. Frauenfeld, Kang Wang, Bin Cao, Xinyue Zhong, Hang Su, and Cuicui Mu
The Cryosphere, 11, 1059–1073,Short summary
Previous research has paid significant attention to permafrost, e.g. active layer thickness, soil temperature, area extent, and associated degradation leading to other changes. However, less focus has been given to seasonally frozen ground and vast area extent. We combined data from more than 800 observation stations, as well as gridded data, to investigate soil freeze depth across China. The results indicate that soil freeze depth decreases with climate warming.
Bin Liu, Zhiyuan Cong, Yuesi Wang, Jinyuan Xin, Xin Wan, Yuepeng Pan, Zirui Liu, Yonghong Wang, Guoshuai Zhang, Zhongyan Wang, Yongjie Wang, and Shichang Kang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 449–463,Short summary
The first observation net of background atmospheric aerosols of the Himalayas and Tibetan Plateau were conducted in 2011–2013, and the aerosol mass loadings were especially illustrated in this paper. Consequently, these terrestrial aerosol masses were strongly ecosystem-dependent, with various seasonality and diurnal cycles at these sites. These findings implicate that regional characteristics and fine-particle emissions need to be treated sensitively when assessing their climatic effects.
Jianzhong Xu, Jinsen Shi, Qi Zhang, Xinlei Ge, Francesco Canonaco, André S. H. Prévôt, Matthias Vonwiller, Sönke Szidat, Jinming Ge, Jianmin Ma, Yanqing An, Shichang Kang, and Dahe Qin
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 14937–14957,Short summary
This study deployed an AMS field study in Lanzhou, a city in northwestern China, evaluating the chemical composition, sources, and processes of urban aerosols during wintertime. In comparison with the results during summer in Lanzhou, the air pollution during winter was more severe and the sources were more complex. In addition, this paper estimates the contributions of fossil and non-fossil sources of organic carbon to primary and secondary organic carbon using the carbon isotopic method.
Shushi Peng, Shilong Piao, Philippe Bousquet, Philippe Ciais, Bengang Li, Xin Lin, Shu Tao, Zhiping Wang, Yuan Zhang, and Feng Zhou
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 14545–14562,Short summary
Methane is an important greenhouse gas, which accounts for about 20 % of the warming induced by long-lived greenhouse gases since 1750. Anthropogenic methane emissions from China may have been growing rapidly in the past decades because of increased coal mining and fast growing livestock. A good long-term methane emissions dataset is still lacking. Here, we produced a detailed bottom-up inventory of anthropogenic methane emissions from the eight major source sectors in China during 1980–2010.
Davide Putero, Paolo Cristofanelli, Michael Sprenger, Bojan Škerlak, Laura Tositti, and Paolo Bonasoni
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 14203–14217,Short summary
The aim of this paper is to present STEFLUX, a tool to obtain a fast-computing identification of the stratospheric intrusion (SI) events occurring at a specific location and during a specified time window. STEFLUX results are compared to the SI observations at two high-mountain WMO/GAW global stations in Nepal and Italy, representative of two hot spots for climate change. Furthermore, the climatology of SI at the two stations is assessed, and the impact of several climate factors investigated.
Dimitris Akritidis, Andrea Pozzer, Prodromos Zanis, Evangelos Tyrlis, Bojan Škerlak, Michael Sprenger, and Jos Lelieveld
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 14025–14039,Short summary
We investigate the contribution of tropopause folds in the summertime tropospheric ozone pool over the eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East. For this purpose we use the EMAC atmospheric chemistry–climate model and a fold identification algorithm. A clear increase of ozone is found in the middle troposphere due to fold activity. The interannual variability of near-surface ozone over the eastern Mediterranean is related to that of both tropopause folds and ozone in the free troposphere.
Fangping Yan, Shichang Kang, Chaoliu Li, Yulan Zhang, Xiang Qin, Yang Li, Xiaopeng Zhang, Zhaofu Hu, Pengfei Chen, Xiaofei Li, Bin Qu, and Mika Sillanpää
The Cryosphere, 10, 2611–2621,Short summary
DOC release of Laohugou Glacier No. 12 was 192 kg km−2 yr−1, of which 43.2 % could be decomposed and return to atmosphere as CO2 within 28 days, producing positive feedback in the warming process and influencing downstream ecosystems. Radiative forcing of snow pit DOC was calculated to be 0.43 W m−2, accounting for about 10 % of the radiative forcing caused by BC. Therefore, DOC is also a light-absorbing agent in glacierized regions, influencing the albedo of glacier surface and glacier melting.
Thomas Trickl, Hannes Vogelmann, Andreas Fix, Andreas Schäfler, Martin Wirth, Bertrand Calpini, Gilbert Levrat, Gonzague Romanens, Arnoud Apituley, Keith M. Wilson, Robert Begbie, Jens Reichardt, Holger Vömel, and Michael Sprenger
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 8791–8815,Short summary
A rather homogeneous deep stratospheric intrusion event was mapped by vertical sounding over central Europe and by model calculations along the transport path. The very low minimum H2O mixing ratios demonstrate almost negligible mixing with tropospheric air during the downward transport. The vertical distributions of O3 and aerosol were transferred from the source region to Europe without major change. A rather shallow outflow from the stratosphere was found.
Shengyun Chen, Wenjie Liu, Qian Zhao, Lin Zhao, Qingbai Wu, Xingjie Lu, Shichang Kang, Xiang Qin, Shilong Chen, Jiawen Ren, and Dahe Qin
The Cryosphere Discuss.,
Revised manuscript not acceptedShort summary
Experimental warming was manipulated using open top chambers in alpine grassland ecosystem in the permafrost regions of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. The results revealed variations of earlier thawing, later freezing and longer freezing-thawing periods in shallow soil. Further, the estimated permafrost table declined under the warming scenarios. The work will be helpful to evaluate the stability of Qinghai-Tibet Railway/Highway and estimate the release of carbon under the future climate warming.
Florian Berkes, Peter Hoor, Heiko Bozem, Daniel Kunkel, Michael Sprenger, and Stephan Henne
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 6011–6025,Short summary
We presented airborne measurements of CO2 and O3 across the entrainment zone over a semi-remote environment in southwestern Germany in late summer 2011 . For the first time CO2 and O3 were used as tracer to identify mixing through this transport barrier. We demonstrated that the tracer--tracer correlation of CO2 and O3 is a powerful tool to identify entrainment and mixing.
Yang Li, Jizu Chen, Shichang Kang, Chaoliu Li, Bin Qu, Lekhendra Tripathee, Fangping Yan, Yulan Zhang, Junmin Guo, Chaman Gul, and Xiang Qin
The Cryosphere Discuss.,
Preprint withdrawnShort summary
To our knowledge, this study constitutes the first quantitative dataset of the impacts of light absorbing particles (LAPs) on glacier ablation estimated directly from the northeastern edge of the Tibetan Plateau (TP).The average concentrations of black carbon (BC) and mineral dust (MD) in surface snow and ice at Laohugou Glacier No. 12 (LHG) were much higher than those detected in snow pits and ice cores in TP and Tien Shan mountains.
Cenlin He, Qinbin Li, Kuo-Nan Liou, Ling Qi, Shu Tao, and Joshua P. Schwarz
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 3077–3098,Short summary
Blarck carbon aging significantly affects its global distribution and thus climatic effects. This study develops a microphysics-based BC aging scheme in a global model, which substantially improves model simulations of BC over the remote Pacific. The microphysical scheme shows fast aging over source regions and much slower aging in remote regions. The microphysical aging significantly reduces global BC burden and lifetime, showing important implications for the estimate of BC radiative effects.
J. Zhang, J. Liu, S. Tao, and G. A. Ban-Weiss
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 15, 11521–11535,Short summary
We tag BC emissions from 13 source regions around the globe in a global chemical transport model MOZART-4 and optimize the aging timescale for each source region by minimizing errors in vertical profiles of BC mass mixing ratios between simulations and HIAPER Polo-to-Pole Observations (HIPPO). We find that the optimized aging timescale of BC varies significantly by region and season. Our simulations indicate that BC lifetime increases nearly linearly with aging timescale for all source regions.
P. Reutter, B. Škerlak, M. Sprenger, and H. Wernli
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 15, 10939–10953,Short summary
In this manuscript, we investigate the exchange of air masses across the dynamical tropopause (stratosphere-troposphere exchange, STE) in the vicinity of North Atlantic cyclones. By using two 6-hourly resolved ERA-Interim climatologies of STE and cyclones from 1979 to 2011, we are able to directly compute the amount of STE in the vicinity of every individual cyclone in this time period. This enables us to provide a robust and consistent quantification of STE near North Atlantic cyclones.
M. Sprenger and H. Wernli
Geosci. Model Dev., 8, 2569–2586,
R.-Q. Shen, X. Ding, Q.-F. He, Z.-Y. Cong, Q.-Q. Yu, and X.-M. Wang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 15, 8781–8793,Short summary
1) Seasonal trends of SOA tracers and origins were studied in the remote TP for the first time. 2) Seasonal variation of isoprene SOA tracers was mainly influenced by emission. 3) Due to the transport of air pollutants from the Indian subcontinent, aromatics SOA tracer presented relatively higher levels in the summer and elevated mass fractions in the winter. 4) Biogenic SOC dominated over anthropogenic SOC in the remote TP.
S. Song, N. E. Selin, A. L. Soerensen, H. Angot, R. Artz, S. Brooks, E.-G. Brunke, G. Conley, A. Dommergue, R. Ebinghaus, T. M. Holsen, D. A. Jaffe, S. Kang, P. Kelley, W. T. Luke, O. Magand, K. Marumoto, K. A. Pfaffhuber, X. Ren, G.-R. Sheu, F. Slemr, T. Warneke, A. Weigelt, P. Weiss-Penzias, D. C. Wip, and Q. Zhang
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 15, 7103–7125,Short summary
A better knowledge of mercury (Hg) emission fluxes into the global atmosphere is important for assessing its human health impacts and evaluating the effectiveness of corresponding policy actions. We for the first time apply a top-down approach at a global scale to quantitatively estimate present-day mercury emission sources as well as key parameters in a chemical transport model, in order to better constrain the global biogeochemical cycle of mercury.
K. Wang, T. Zhang, and X. Zhong
The Cryosphere, 9, 1321–1331,
S. Kang, F. Wang, U. Morgenstern, Y. Zhang, B. Grigholm, S. Kaspari, M. Schwikowski, J. Ren, T. Yao, D. Qin, and P. A. Mayewski
The Cryosphere, 9, 1213–1222,
J. Z. Xu, Q. Zhang, Z. B. Wang, G. M. Yu, X. L. Ge, and X. Qin
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 15, 5069–5081,
Z. Cong, S. Kang, K. Kawamura, B. Liu, X. Wan, Z. Wang, S. Gao, and P. Fu
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 15, 1573–1584,
T. Trickl, H. Vogelmann, H. Giehl, H.-E. Scheel, M. Sprenger, and A. Stohl
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 14, 9941–9961,
X. Zhong, T. Zhang, and K. Wang
The Cryosphere, 8, 785–799,
B. Škerlak, M. Sprenger, and H. Wernli
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 14, 913–937,
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Bertrand Cluzet, Matthieu Lafaysse, César Deschamps-Berger, Matthieu Vernay, and Marie Dumont
The Cryosphere, 16, 1281–1298,Short summary
The mountainous snow cover is highly variable at all temporal and spatial scales. Snow cover models suffer from large errors, while snowpack observations are sparse. Data assimilation combines them into a better estimate of the snow cover. A major challenge is to propagate information from observed into unobserved areas. This paper presents a spatialized version of the particle filter, in which information from in situ snow depth observations is successfully used to constrain nearby simulations.
Kerttu Kouki, Petri Räisänen, Kari Luojus, Anna Luomaranta, and Aku Riihelä
The Cryosphere, 16, 1007–1030,Short summary
We analyze state-of-the-art climate models’ ability to describe snow mass and whether biases in modeled temperature or precipitation can explain the discrepancies in snow mass. In winter, biases in precipitation are the main factor affecting snow mass, while in spring, biases in temperature becomes more important, which is an expected result. However, temperature or precipitation cannot explain all snow mass discrepancies. Other factors, such as models’ structural errors, are also significant.
Lucas Berard-Chenu, Hugues François, Emmanuelle George, and Samuel Morin
The Cryosphere, 16, 863–881,Short summary
This study investigates the past snow reliability (1961–2019) of 16 ski resorts in the French Alps using state-of-the-art snowpack modelling. We used snowmaking investment figures to infer the evolution of snowmaking coverage at the individual ski resort level. Snowmaking improved snow reliability for the core of the winter season for the highest-elevation ski resorts. However it did not counterbalance the decreasing trend in snow cover reliability for lower-elevation ski resorts and in spring.
Achut Parajuli, Daniel F. Nadeau, François Anctil, and Marco Alves
The Cryosphere, 15, 5371–5386,Short summary
Cold content is the energy required to attain an isothermal (0 °C) state and resulting in the snow surface melt. This study focuses on determining the multi-layer cold content (30 min time steps) relying on field measurements, snow temperature profile, and empirical formulation in four distinct forest sites of Montmorency Forest, eastern Canada. We present novel research where the effect of forest structure, local topography, and meteorological conditions on cold content variability is explored.
Yufei Liu, Yiwen Fang, and Steven A. Margulis
The Cryosphere, 15, 5261–5280,Short summary
We examined the spatiotemporal distribution of stored water in the seasonal snowpack over High Mountain Asia, based on a new snow reanalysis dataset. The dataset was derived utilizing satellite-observed snow information, which spans across 18 water years, at a high spatial (~ 500 m) and temporal (daily) resolution. Snow mass and snow storage distribution over space and time are analyzed in this paper, which brings new insights into understanding the snowpack variability over this region.
Alicia A. Dauginis and Laura C. Brown
The Cryosphere, 15, 4781–4805,Short summary
This work examines changes in the timing (on/off dates) of Arctic snow, lake ice, and sea ice to investigate how they have responded to recent climate change and determine if they are responding similarly. We looked at pan-Arctic trends since 1997 and regional trends since 2004 using (mainly) satellite data. Strong regional variability was shown in the snow and ice trends, which highlights the need for a detailed understanding of the regional response to ongoing changes in the Arctic climate.
Moritz Buchmann, Michael Begert, Stefan Brönnimann, and Christoph Marty
The Cryosphere, 15, 4625–4636,Short summary
We investigated the impacts of local-scale variations by analysing snow climate indicators derived from parallel snow measurements. We found the largest relative inter-pair differences for all indicators in spring and the smallest in winter. The findings serve as an important basis for our understanding of uncertainties of commonly used snow indicators and provide, in combination with break-detection methods, the groundwork in view of any homogenization efforts regarding snow time series.
Michael Matiu, Alice Crespi, Giacomo Bertoldi, Carlo Maria Carmagnola, Christoph Marty, Samuel Morin, Wolfgang Schöner, Daniele Cat Berro, Gabriele Chiogna, Ludovica De Gregorio, Sven Kotlarski, Bruno Majone, Gernot Resch, Silvia Terzago, Mauro Valt, Walter Beozzo, Paola Cianfarra, Isabelle Gouttevin, Giorgia Marcolini, Claudia Notarnicola, Marcello Petitta, Simon C. Scherrer, Ulrich Strasser, Michael Winkler, Marc Zebisch, Andrea Cicogna, Roberto Cremonini, Andrea Debernardi, Mattia Faletto, Mauro Gaddo, Lorenzo Giovannini, Luca Mercalli, Jean-Michel Soubeyroux, Andrea Sušnik, Alberto Trenti, Stefano Urbani, and Viktor Weilguni
The Cryosphere, 15, 1343–1382,Short summary
The first Alpine-wide assessment of station snow depth has been enabled by a collaborative effort of the research community which involves more than 30 partners, 6 countries, and more than 2000 stations. It shows how snow in the European Alps matches the climatic zones and gives a robust estimate of observed changes: stronger decreases in the snow season at low elevations and in spring at all elevations, however, with considerable regional differences.
Rhae Sung Kim, Sujay Kumar, Carrie Vuyovich, Paul Houser, Jessica Lundquist, Lawrence Mudryk, Michael Durand, Ana Barros, Edward J. Kim, Barton A. Forman, Ethan D. Gutmann, Melissa L. Wrzesien, Camille Garnaud, Melody Sandells, Hans-Peter Marshall, Nicoleta Cristea, Justin M. Pflug, Jeremy Johnston, Yueqian Cao, David Mocko, and Shugong Wang
The Cryosphere, 15, 771–791,Short summary
High SWE uncertainty is observed in mountainous and forested regions, highlighting the need for high-resolution snow observations in these regions. Substantial uncertainty in snow water storage in Tundra regions and the dominance of water storage in these regions points to the need for high-accuracy snow estimation. Finally, snow measurements during the melt season are most needed at high latitudes, whereas observations at near peak snow accumulations are most beneficial over the midlatitudes.
François Tuzet, Marie Dumont, Ghislain Picard, Maxim Lamare, Didier Voisin, Pierre Nabat, Mathieu Lafaysse, Fanny Larue, Jesus Revuelto, and Laurent Arnaud
The Cryosphere, 14, 4553–4579,Short summary
This study presents a field dataset collected over 30 d from two snow seasons at a Col du Lautaret site (French Alps). The dataset compares different measurements or estimates of light-absorbing particle (LAP) concentrations in snow, highlighting a gap in the current understanding of the measurement of these quantities. An ensemble snowpack model is then evaluated for this dataset estimating that LAPs shorten each snow season by around 10 d despite contrasting meteorological conditions.
Joshua King, Stephen Howell, Mike Brady, Peter Toose, Chris Derksen, Christian Haas, and Justin Beckers
The Cryosphere, 14, 4323–4339,Short summary
Physical measurements of snow on sea ice are sparse, making it difficulty to evaluate satellite estimates or model representations. Here, we introduce new measurements of snow properties on sea ice to better understand variability at distances less than 200 m. Our work shows that similarities in the snow structure are found at longer distances on younger ice than older ice.
Jianwei Yang, Lingmei Jiang, Kari Luojus, Jinmei Pan, Juha Lemmetyinen, Matias Takala, and Shengli Wu
The Cryosphere, 14, 1763–1778,Short summary
There are many challenges for accurate snow depth estimation using passive microwave data. Machine learning (ML) techniques are deemed to be powerful tools for establishing nonlinear relations between independent variables and a given target variable. In this study, we investigate the potential capability of the random forest (RF) model on snow depth estimation at temporal and spatial scales. The result indicates that the fitted RF algorithms perform better on temporal than spatial scales.
Colleen Mortimer, Lawrence Mudryk, Chris Derksen, Kari Luojus, Ross Brown, Richard Kelly, and Marco Tedesco
The Cryosphere, 14, 1579–1594,Short summary
Existing stand-alone passive microwave SWE products have markedly different climatological SWE patterns compared to reanalysis-based datasets. The AMSR-E SWE has low spatial and temporal correlations with the four reanalysis-based products evaluated and GlobSnow and perform poorly in comparisons with snow transect data from Finland, Russia, and Canada. There is better agreement with in situ data when multiple SWE products, excluding the stand-alone passive microwave SWE products, are combined.
Céline Portenier, Fabia Hüsler, Stefan Härer, and Stefan Wunderle
The Cryosphere, 14, 1409–1423,Short summary
We present a method to derive snow cover maps from freely available webcam images in the Swiss Alps. With marginal manual user input, we can transform a webcam image into a georeferenced map and therewith perform snow cover analyses with a high spatiotemporal resolution over a large area. Our evaluation has shown that webcams could not only serve as a reference for improved validation of satellite-based approaches, but also complement satellite-based snow cover retrieval.
Markus Todt, Nick Rutter, Christopher G. Fletcher, and Leanne M. Wake
The Cryosphere, 13, 3077–3091,Short summary
Vegetation is often represented by a single layer in global land models. Studies have found deficient simulation of thermal radiation beneath forest canopies when represented by single-layer vegetation. This study corrects thermal radiation in forests for a global land model using single-layer vegetation in order to assess the effect of deficient thermal radiation on snow cover and snowmelt. Results indicate that single-layer vegetation causes snow in forests to be too cold and melt too late.
Stefanie Arndt and Christian Haas
The Cryosphere, 13, 1943–1958,
David F. Hill, Elizabeth A. Burakowski, Ryan L. Crumley, Julia Keon, J. Michelle Hu, Anthony A. Arendt, Katreen Wikstrom Jones, and Gabriel J. Wolken
The Cryosphere, 13, 1767–1784,Short summary
We present a new statistical model for converting snow depths to water equivalent. The only variables required are snow depth, day of year, and location. We use the location to look up climatological parameters such as mean winter precipitation and mean temperature difference (difference between hottest month and coldest month). The model is simple by design so that it can be applied to depth measurements anywhere, anytime. The model is shown to perform better than other widely used approaches.
Rebecca Mott, Andreas Wolf, Maximilian Kehl, Harald Kunstmann, Michael Warscher, and Thomas Grünewald
The Cryosphere, 13, 1247–1265,Short summary
The mass balance of very small glaciers is often governed by anomalous snow accumulation, winter precipitation being multiplied by snow redistribution processes, or by suppressed snow ablation driven by micrometeorological effects lowering net radiation and turbulent heat exchange. In this study we discuss the relative contribution of snow accumulation (avalanches) versus micrometeorology (katabatic flow) on the mass balance of the lowest perennial ice field of the Alps, the Ice Chapel.
Yue Zhou, Hui Wen, Jun Liu, Wei Pu, Qingcai Chen, and Xin Wang
The Cryosphere, 13, 157–175,Short summary
We first investigated the optical characteristics and potential sources of chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM) in seasonal snow over northwestern China. The abundance of CDOM showed regional variation. At some sites strongly influenced by local soil, the absorption of CDOM cannot be neglected compared to black carbon. We found two humic-like and one protein-like fluorophores in snow. The major sources of snow CDOM were soil, biomass burning, and anthropogenic pollution.
Benjamin J. Hatchett and Hilary G. Eisen
The Cryosphere, 13, 21–28,Short summary
We examine the timing of early season snowpack relevant to oversnow vehicle (OSV) recreation over the past 3 decades in the Lake Tahoe region (USA). Data from two independent data sources suggest that the timing of achieving sufficient snowpack has shifted later by 2 weeks. Increasing rainfall and more dry days play a role in the later onset. Adaptation strategies are provided for winter travel management planning to address negative impacts of loss of early season snowpack for OSV usage.
Deborah Verfaillie, Matthieu Lafaysse, Michel Déqué, Nicolas Eckert, Yves Lejeune, and Samuel Morin
The Cryosphere, 12, 1249–1271,Short summary
This article addresses local changes of seasonal snow and its meteorological drivers, at 1500 m altitude in the Chartreuse mountain range in the Northern French Alps, for the period 1960–2100. We use an ensemble of adjusted RCM outputs consistent with IPCC AR5 GCM outputs (RCPs 2.6, 4.5 and 8.5) and the snowpack model Crocus. Beyond scenario-based approach, global temperature levels on the order of 1.5 °C and 2 °C above preindustrial levels correspond to 25 and 32% reduction of mean snow depth.
Paul J. Kushner, Lawrence R. Mudryk, William Merryfield, Jaison T. Ambadan, Aaron Berg, Adéline Bichet, Ross Brown, Chris Derksen, Stephen J. Déry, Arlan Dirkson, Greg Flato, Christopher G. Fletcher, John C. Fyfe, Nathan Gillett, Christian Haas, Stephen Howell, Frédéric Laliberté, Kelly McCusker, Michael Sigmond, Reinel Sospedra-Alfonso, Neil F. Tandon, Chad Thackeray, Bruno Tremblay, and Francis W. Zwiers
The Cryosphere, 12, 1137–1156,Short summary
Here, the Canadian research network CanSISE uses state-of-the-art observations of snow and sea ice to assess how Canada's climate model and climate prediction systems capture variability in snow, sea ice, and related climate parameters. We find that the system performs well, accounting for observational uncertainty (especially for snow), model uncertainty, and chaotic climate variability. Even for variables like sea ice, where improvement is needed, useful prediction tools can be developed.
Lawrence R. Mudryk, Chris Derksen, Stephen Howell, Fred Laliberté, Chad Thackeray, Reinel Sospedra-Alfonso, Vincent Vionnet, Paul J. Kushner, and Ross Brown
The Cryosphere, 12, 1157–1176,Short summary
This paper presents changes in both snow and sea ice that have occurred over Canada during the recent past and shows climate model estimates for future changes expected to occur by the year 2050. The historical changes of snow and sea ice are generally coherent and consistent with the regional history of temperature and precipitation changes. It is expected that snow and sea ice will continue to decrease in the future, declining by an additional 15–30 % from present day values by the year 2050.
Andrew M. Snauffer, William W. Hsieh, Alex J. Cannon, and Markus A. Schnorbus
The Cryosphere, 12, 891–905,Short summary
Estimating winter snowpack throughout British Columbia is challenging due to the complex terrain, thick forests, and high snow accumulations present. This paper describes a way to make better snow estimates by combining publicly available data using machine learning, a branch of artificial intelligence research. These improved estimates will help water resources managers better plan for changes in rivers and lakes fed by spring snowmelt and will aid other research that supports such planning.
Thomas Grünewald, Fabian Wolfsperger, and Michael Lehning
The Cryosphere, 12, 385–400,Short summary
Snow farming is the conservation of snow during summer. Large snow piles are covered with a sawdust insulation layer, reducing melt and guaranteeing a specific amount of available snow in autumn, independent of the weather conditions. Snow volume changes in two heaps were monitored, showing that about a third of the snow was lost. Model simulations confirmed the large effect of the insulation on energy balance and melt. The model can now be used as a tool to examine future snow-farming projects.
Kristoffer Aalstad, Sebastian Westermann, Thomas Vikhamar Schuler, Julia Boike, and Laurent Bertino
The Cryosphere, 12, 247–270,Short summary
We demonstrate how snow cover data from satellites can be used to constrain estimates of snow distributions at sites in the Arctic. In this effort, we make use of data assimilation to combine the information contained in the snow cover data with a simple snow model. By comparing our snow distribution estimates to independent observations, we find that this method performs favorably. Being modular, this method could be applied to other areas as a component of a larger reanalysis system.
Xinyue Zhong, Tingjun Zhang, Shichang Kang, Kang Wang, Lei Zheng, Yuantao Hu, and Huijuan Wang
The Cryosphere, 12, 227–245,
James St. Clair and W. Steven Holbrook
The Cryosphere, 11, 2997–3009,Short summary
We investigate the performance of a semiautomated algorithm for measuring snow water equivalent (SWE) from common-offset ground-penetrating radar (GPR) data. GPR-derived SWE estimates are similar to manual measurements, indicating that the method is reliable. Our results will hopefully make GPR a more attractive tool for monitoring SWE in mountain watersheds.
Silvia Terzago, Jost von Hardenberg, Elisa Palazzi, and Antonello Provenzale
The Cryosphere, 11, 1625–1645,Short summary
The estimate of the current and future conditions of snow resources in mountain areas depends on the availability of reliable fine-resolution data sets and of climate models capable of properly representing snow processes and snow–climate interactions. This work considers the snow water equivalent data sets from remote sensing, reanalyses, regional and global climate models available for the Alps and explores their ability to provide a coherent view of the snowpack features and its changes.
Wei Pu, Xin Wang, Hailun Wei, Yue Zhou, Jinsen Shi, Zhiyuan Hu, Hongchun Jin, and Quanliang Chen
The Cryosphere, 11, 1213–1233,Short summary
We conducted a large field campaign to collect snow samples in Xinjiang. We measured insoluble light-absorbing particles with estimated black carbon concentrations of 10–150 ngg-1. We found a probable shift in emission sources with the progression of winter and dominated contributions of BC and OC to light absorption. A PMF model indicated an optimal three-factor/source solution that included industrial pollution, biomass burning, and soil dust.
Marie Dumont, Laurent Arnaud, Ghislain Picard, Quentin Libois, Yves Lejeune, Pierre Nabat, Didier Voisin, and Samuel Morin
The Cryosphere, 11, 1091–1110,Short summary
Snow spectral albedo in the visible/near-infrared range has been continuously measured during a winter season at Col de Porte alpine site (French Alps; 45.30° N, 5.77°E; 1325 m a.s.l.). This study highlights that the variations of spectral albedo can be successfully explained by variations of the following snow surface variables: snow-specific surface area, effective light-absorbing impurities content, presence of liquid water and slope.
Martin Wegmann, Yvan Orsolini, Emanuel Dutra, Olga Bulygina, Alexander Sterin, and Stefan Brönnimann
The Cryosphere, 11, 923–935,Short summary
We investigate long-term climate reanalyses datasets to infer their quality in reproducing snow depth values compared to in situ measured data from meteorological stations that go back to 1900. We found that the long-term reanalyses do a good job in reproducing snow depths but have some questionable snow states early in the 20th century. Thus, with care, climate reanalyses can be a valuable tool to investigate spatial snow evolution in global warming and climate change studies.
Pierre Spandre, Hugues François, Emmanuel Thibert, Samuel Morin, and Emmanuelle George-Marcelpoil
The Cryosphere, 11, 891–909,Short summary
The production of machine-made snow is generalized in ski resorts and represents the most common adaptation method to mitigate effects of climate variability and its projected changes. However, the actual snow mass that can be recovered from a given water mass used for snowmaking remains poorly known. All results were consistent with 60 % (±10 %) of the water mass found as snow within the edge of the ski slope, with most of the lost fraction of water being due to site-dependent characteristics.
Anna Haberkorn, Nander Wever, Martin Hoelzle, Marcia Phillips, Robert Kenner, Mathias Bavay, and Michael Lehning
The Cryosphere, 11, 585–607,Short summary
The effects of permafrost degradation on rock slope stability in the Alps affect people and infrastructure. Modelling the evolution of permafrost is therefore of great importance. However, the snow cover has generally not been taken into account in model studies of steep, rugged rock walls. Thus, we present a distributed model study on the influence of the snow cover on rock temperatures. The promising results are discussed against detailed rock temperature measurements and snow depth data.
Christoph Marty, Sebastian Schlögl, Mathias Bavay, and Michael Lehning
The Cryosphere, 11, 517–529,Short summary
We simulate the future snow cover in the Alps with the help of a snow model, which is fed by projected temperature and precipitation changes from a large set of climate models. The results demonstrate that snow below 1000 m is probably a rare guest at the end of the century. Moreover, even above 3000 m the simulations show a drastic decrease in snow depth. However, the results reveal that the projected snow cover reduction can be mitigated by 50 % if we manage to keep global warming below 2°.
Eric A. Sproles, Travis R. Roth, and Anne W. Nolin
The Cryosphere, 11, 331–341,Short summary
We present an innovative approach to quantify basin-wide snowpack using calculations of spatial exceedance probability. Our method quantifies how the extraordinarily low snowpacks of 2014 and 2015 in the Pacific Northwest of the United States compare to snowpacks in warmer conditions and the probability that similar snowpacks will occur. We present these extraordinarily low snowpacks as snow analogs to develop anticipatory capacity for natural resource management under warmer conditions.
Johan Gaume, Alec van Herwijnen, Guillaume Chambon, Nander Wever, and Jürg Schweizer
The Cryosphere, 11, 217–228,Short summary
Based on DEM simulations we developed a new model for the onset of crack propagation in snow slab avalanche release. The model reconciles past approaches by considering the complex interplay between slab elasticity and the mechanical behavior of the weak layer including its structural collapse. The model agrees with extensive field data and can reproduce crack propagation on low-angle terrain and the decrease in critical crack length with increasing slope angle observed in numerical experiments.
Melody Sandells, Richard Essery, Nick Rutter, Leanne Wake, Leena Leppänen, and Juha Lemmetyinen
The Cryosphere, 11, 229–246,Short summary
This study looks at a wide range of options for simulating sensor signals for satellite monitoring of water stored as snow, though an ensemble of 1323 coupled snow evolution and microwave scattering models. The greatest improvements will be made with better computer simulations of how the snow microstructure changes, followed by how the microstructure scatters radiation at microwave frequencies. Snow compaction should also be considered in systems to monitor snow mass from space.
Carla Mora, Juan Javier Jiménez, Pedro Pina, João Catalão, and Gonçalo Vieira
The Cryosphere, 11, 139–155,Short summary
We evaluate the use of high-resolution microwave satellite images from TerraSAR-X for mapping snow-patch distribution in ice-free areas of the maritime Antarctic (King George Island). The imagery was acquired simultaneously to ground truthing of snow. Image classification resulted in very high accuracy when discriminating between snow, water and bare ground. The method provides a solution for characterizing the snowmelt patterns in the ice-free areas of the Antarctic Peninsula.
Masaaki Ishizaka, Hiroki Motoyoshi, Satoru Yamaguchi, Sento Nakai, Toru Shiina, and Ken-ichiro Muramoto
The Cryosphere, 10, 2831–2845,Short summary
We measured the snowfall densities with a CCD camera, simultaneously observing the predominant snowfall types determined by the measured size and the fall speed. With a CCD camera, we obtain the quantitative relationships between snowfall densities and presumed density derived from the size and mass components. This suggests the possibility of estimating snowfall densities from the measured size and the fall speed data, and using them as the initial densities for a snowpack in a numerical model.
Nander Wever, Sebastian Würzer, Charles Fierz, and Michael Lehning
The Cryosphere, 10, 2731–2744,Short summary
The study presents a dual domain approach to simulate liquid water flow in snow using the 1-D physics based snow cover model SNOWPACK. In this approach, the pore space is separated into a part for matrix flow and a part that represents preferential flow. Using this approach, water can percolate sub-freezing snow and form dense (ice) layers. A comparison with snow pits shows that some of the observed ice layers were reproduced by the model while others remain challenging to simulate.
Jürg Schweizer, Benjamin Reuter, Alec van Herwijnen, Bettina Richter, and Johan Gaume
The Cryosphere, 10, 2637–2653,
Libo Wang, Peter Toose, Ross Brown, and Chris Derksen
The Cryosphere, 10, 2589–2602,Short summary
The conventional wisdom is that Arctic warming will result in an increase in the frequency of winter melt events. However, results in this study show little evidence of trends in winter melt frequency over 1988–2013 period. The frequency of winter melt events is strongly influenced by the selection of the start and end dates of winter period, and a fixed-window method for analyzing winter melt events is observed to generate false increasing trends from a shift in the timing of snow cover season.
Florent Domine, Mathieu Barrere, and Denis Sarrazin
The Cryosphere, 10, 2573–2588,Short summary
The thermal conductivity (TC) of the snow and top soil greatly impacts the permafrost energy budget. We report the first winter-long monitoring of snow and soil TC in the high Arctic. The data and field observations show the formation of a highly insulating basal depth hoar layer overlaid by a more conductive wind slab. Detailed snow physics models developed for alpine snow cannot reproduce observations because they neglect the strong upward vertical water vapor flux prevailing in Arctic snow.
Xiaodong Huang, Jie Deng, Xiaofang Ma, Yunlong Wang, Qisheng Feng, Xiaohua Hao, and Tiangang Liang
The Cryosphere, 10, 2453–2463,Short summary
Integrated snow products were used to analyze the temporal and spatial variation of the snow cover in China during 2000–2014. The results indicated that the overall annual number of snow-covered days and average snow depth in China have increased in the past 14 years, but differences in the snow cover variation in China were significant. Overall, the snow cover increased significantly in south and northeast China, but decreased significantly in Xinjiang and the Tibetan Plateau.
Tom Watts, Nick Rutter, Peter Toose, Chris Derksen, Melody Sandells, and John Woodward
The Cryosphere, 10, 2069–2074,Short summary
Ice layers in snowpacks introduce uncertainty in satellite-derived estimates of snow water equivalent, have ecological impacts on plants and animals, and change the thermal and vapour transport properties of the snowpack. Here we present a new field method for measuring the density of ice layers. The method was used in the Arctic and mid-latitudes; the mean measured ice layer density was significantly higher than values typically used in the literature.
R. Marti, S. Gascoin, E. Berthier, M. de Pinel, T. Houet, and D. Laffly
The Cryosphere, 10, 1361–1380,Short summary
To date, there is no definitive approach to map snow depth in mountainous areas from spaceborne sensors. We used very-high-resolution stereo satellites imagery (Pléiades) to generate a map of snow depth in a small Pyrenean catchment. The validation results are promising and open the possibility to retrieve the snow depth at a metric horizontal resolution in remote mountainous areas, even when no field data are available.
Felix C. Seidel, Karl Rittger, S. McKenzie Skiles, Noah P. Molotch, and Thomas H. Painter
The Cryosphere, 10, 1229–1244,Short summary
Quantifying the snow albedo effect is an important step to predict water availability as well as changes in climate and sea level. We use imaging spectroscopy to determine optical properties of mountain snow. We find an inverse relationship between snow albedo and grain size as well as between elevation and grain size. Under strong melt conditions, however, we show that the optical-equivalent snow grain size increases slower than expected at lower elevations and we explain possible reasons.
Mark J. P. Sigouin and Bing C. Si
The Cryosphere, 10, 1181–1190,Short summary
The cosmic-ray soil moisture probe (CRP) uses the natural above ground neutron intensity to measure soil water content at a landscape scale. The goal of our research was to use the CRP to monitor how much water is in snowpacks, since snow and soil water affect neutron intensity similarly. We developed a relationship between neutron intensity and snow water. We used the relationship to estimate snow water non-invasively in an area of ~ 300 m radius using neutron intensity readings from the CRP.
Carlo De Michele, Francesco Avanzi, Daniele Passoni, Riccardo Barzaghi, Livio Pinto, Paolo Dosso, Antonio Ghezzi, Roberto Gianatti, and Giacomo Della Vedova
The Cryosphere, 10, 511–522,Short summary
We investigate snow depth distribution at peak accumulation over a small Alpine area using photogrammetry-based surveys with a fixed wing unmanned aerial system. Results reveal that UAS estimations of point snow depth present an average difference with reference to manual measurements equal to -0.073 m. Moreover, in this case study snow depth standard deviation (hence coefficient of variation) increases with decreasing cell size, but it stabilizes for resolutions smaller than 1 m.
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Light-absorbing impurities deposited on snow can reduce surface albedo and contribute to the near-worldwide melting of snowpack and ice. This study focused on the black carbon and mineral dust in snow cover on the Tibetan Plateau. We discussed their concentrations, distributions, possible sources, and albedo reduction and radiative forcing. Findings indicated that the impacts of black carbon and mineral dust need to be properly accounted for in future regional climate projections.
Light-absorbing impurities deposited on snow can reduce surface albedo and contribute to the...