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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 4, issue 4 | Copyright
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 4, 717-734, 2011
© Author(s) 2011. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 11 Apr 2011

Research article | 11 Apr 2011

Retrieval algorithm for CO2 and CH4 column abundances from short-wavelength infrared spectral observations by the Greenhouse gases observing satellite

Y. Yoshida1, Y. Ota*,1, N. Eguchi**,1, N. Kikuchi2, K. Nobuta2, H. Tran3, I. Morino1, and T. Yokota1 Y. Yoshida et al.
  • 1National Institute for Environmental Studies, 16-2 Onogawa, Tsukuba 305-8506, Japan
  • 2Fujitsu FIP Corporation, National Institute for Environmental Studies, 16-2 Onogawa, Tsukuba 305-8506, Japan
  • 3Laboratoire Interuniversitaire des Systèmes Atmosphériques (LISA, UMR CNRS 7583), Université Paris Est Créteil et Université Paris Diderot, Faculté des Sciences et Technologie, 94010 Créteil Cedex, France
  • *currently at: Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, 3173-25 Showa-machi, Kanazawa-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa 236-0001, Japan
  • **currently at: Tohoku University, 6-3 Aramaki Aza-aoba, Aoba-ku, Sendai 980-8578, Japan

Abstract. The Greenhouse gases Observing SATellite (GOSAT) was launched on 23 January 2009 to monitor the global distributions of carbon dioxide and methane from space. It has operated continuously since then. Here, we describe a retrieval algorithm for column abundances of these gases from the short-wavelength infrared spectra obtained by the Thermal And Near infrared Sensor for carbon Observation-Fourier Transform Spectrometer (TANSO-FTS). The algorithm consists of three steps. First, cloud-free observational scenes are selected by several cloud-detection methods. Then, column abundances of carbon dioxide and methane are retrieved based on the optimal estimation method. Finally, the retrieval quality is examined to exclude low-quality and/or aerosol-contaminated results. Most of the retrieval random errors come from instrumental noise. The interferences due to auxiliary parameters retrieved simultaneously with gas abundances are small. The evaluated precisions of the retrieved column abundances for single observations are less than 1% in most cases. The interhemispherical differences and temporal variation patterns of the retrieved column abundances show features similar to those of an atmospheric transport model.

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