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DISCOVER-AQ Ground-based PANDORA Trace Gas Measurements

DISCOVER-AQ_Ground_Remote_Sensing_TraceGas_Data are ground-based PANDORA Network NO2 and O3 column measurements. This product is a result of NASA Earth-Venture funded mission Deriving Information on Surface Conditions from COlumn and VERtically Resolved Observations Relevant to Air Quality (DISCOVER-AQ). Data was collected via a network of ground-based PANDORA instrumentation. Data from the Baltimore-Washington (2011), San Joaquin Valley, California (2013), and Houston, TX (2013) campaigns are included in this product. Data collection is complete. Monitoring air quality from space has made substantial progress, however, there are still many challenges faced today. One of those challenges that regulators face is monitoring the spatial distribution of pollutants as air quality monitoring networks are costly and have considerable gaps in their spatial coverage. Observations of near-surface pollution from satellites would provide an unprecedented view of the spatial distribution of pollution and could potentially provide a robust air quality observation system. NASA’s DISCOVER-AQ (Deriving Information on Surface Conditions from Column and Vertically Resolved Observations Relevant to Air Quality) was a multi-year field campaign aimed at improving our understanding of the role that remote sensing, including satellite-based remote sensing, could play in air quality monitoring systems. To achieve its science goals, DISCOVER-AQ employed two NASA aircraft, the P3-B and King Air, with the P-3B completing in-situ profiling of the atmosphere (aerosol properties, meteorological variables, and trace gas species). The King Air conducted both passive and active remote sensing of the atmospheric column extending below the aircraft to the surface. Data from an existing network of surface air quality monitors, AERONET sun photometers, Pandora UV/vis spectrometers and model simulations were also collected. Further, DISCOVER-AQ employed many surface monitoring sites, with measurements being made on the ground, in conjunction with the aircraft. Four campaigns collecting observations over different regions of the United States that are in violation of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). These campaigns included Baltimore-Washington (July 2011), San Joaquin Valley, California (January-February 2013), Houston, TX (September 2013), and Denver-Front Range region of Colorado (July-August 2014). The data collected during DISCOVER-AQ will improve the ability to monitor pollution from satellites and therefore allow scientists to make improved air quality forecasts.

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