Entrainment and Mixing of Transported Ozone Layers: Implications for Surface Air Quality in the Western U.S.
1 University of Colorado CIRES at NOAA ESRL Chemical Sciences Division, Boulder, CO, USA
2 NOAA ESRL Chemical Sciences Division, Boulder, CO, USA
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Published online: 7 July 2020
Recently, two air quality campaigns were conducted in the southwestern United States to study the impact of transported ozone, stratospheric intrusions, and fire emissions on ground-level ozone concentrations. The California Baseline Ozone Transport Study (CABOTS) took place in May – August 2016 covering the central California coast and San Joaquin Valley, and the Fires, Asian, and Stratospheric Transport Las Vegas Ozone Study (FAST-LVOS) was conducted in the greater Las Vegas, Nevada area in May – June 2017. During these studies, nearly 1000 hours of ozone and aerosol profile data were collected with the NOAA TOPAZ lidar. A Doppler wind lidar and a radar wind profiler provided continuous observations of atmospheric turbulence, horizontal winds, and mixed layer height. These measurements allowed us to directly observe the degree to which ozone transport layers aloft were entrained into the boundary layer and to quantify the resulting impact on surface ozone levels. Mixed layer heights in the San Joaquin Valley during CABOTS were generally below 1 km above ground level (AGL), while boundary layer heights in Las Vegas during FAST-LVOS routinely exceeded 3 km AGL and occasionally reached up to 4.5 km AGL. Consequently, boundary layer entrainment was more often observed during FAST-LVOS, while most elevated ozone layers passed untapped over the San Joaquin Valley during CABOTS.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2020
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