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A global climatology of stratospheric OClO derived from GOMOS measurement

DOI: 10.5194/amtd-6-3511-2013

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The Global Ozone Monitoring by Occultation of Stars (GOMOS) instrument on board the European platform ENVISAT was dedicated to the study of the atmosphere of the Earth using the stellar occultation technique. The spectral range of the GOMOS spectrometer extends from the UV to the near infrared, allowing for the retrieval of species such as O3, NO2, NO3, H2O, O2, air density, aerosol extinction and OClO. Nevertheless, OClO can not be retrieved using a single GOMOS measurement because of the weak signal-to-noise ratio and the small optical thickness associated with this molecule. We present here the method used to detect this molecule by using several GOMOS measurements. It is based on a two-step approach. First, several co-located measurements are combined in a statistical way to build an averaged measurement with a higher signal-to-noise ratio. Then, a Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (DOAS) method is applied to retrieve OClO slant column densities. The statistics of the sets of GOMOS measurements used to build the averaged measurement and the spectral window selection are analyzed. The obtained retrievals are compared to results from two balloon-borne instruments. It appears that the inter-comparisons of OClO are generally satisfying. Then, two nighttime climatologies of OClO slant column densities based on GOMOS averaged measurements are presented. The first depicts annual global pictures of OClO from 2003 to 2011. From this climatology, the presence of an OClO layer in the equatorial region at about 35 km is confirmed and strong concentrations of OClO in both polar regions are observed, a sign of chlorine activation. The second climatology is a monthly time series. It clearly shows the chlorine activation of the lower stratosphere during winter. Moreover the equatorial OClO layer is observed during all the years without any significant variations. Finally, the anti-correlation between OClO and NO2 is highlighted. This very promising method, applied on GOMOS measurements, allowed us to build the first nighttime climatology of OClO.


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