EGU General Assembly 2020
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Recent evolution of stratospheric aerosol load from ground-based lidars and satellites: impact of volcanic eruptions and wildfires.

Sergey Khaykin1, Sophie Godin-Beekmann1, Ghassan Taha2, Artem Feofilov3, Adam Bourassa4, Landon Rieger4, and Alain Hauchecorne1
Sergey Khaykin et al.
  • 1LATMOS/IPSL, UVSQ Université Paris-Saclay, Sorbonne Université, CNRS, Guyancourt, France
  • 2NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia, USA
  • 3LMD/IPSL, Sorbonne Université, UPMC Univ Paris 06, CNRS, École polytechnique, Palaiseau, France
  • 4Institute of Space and Atmospheric Studies, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

    During the last 2 years (2018-2019) a series of volcanic eruptions led to remarkable enhancements in stratospheric aerosol load. These are eruptions of Ambae (July 2018, Vanuatu), Raikoke (June 2019, Russia) and Ulawun (July 2019, Papua New Guinea). In this study we examine the evolution of the stratospheric aerosol bulk optical properties following these events in consideration of large-scale stratospheric circulation. We use long-term aerosol records by ground-based lidars in both hemispheres together with global observations by various satellite missions (OMPS-LP, SAGE III, OSIRIS, CALIOP) and discuss the consistency between these datasets.  In addition, we evaluate the preliminary lower stratosphere aerosol product by ESA Aeolus mission through intercomparison with ground-based lidars.

   The 28-yr Observatoire de Haute Provence (OHP) lidar record shows that Raikoke eruption has led to the strongest enhancement of stratospheric aerosol optical depth (SAOD) in the northern extratropics since Pinatubo eruption. Satellite observations suggest that the stratospheric plume of Raikoke has dispersed throughout the entire Northern hemisphere and ascended up to 27 km altitude. The eruption of Ulawun in the tropics has further boosted the stratospheric aerosol load and by Fall 2019, the global mean SAOD was a factor of 2.5 higher than its background level.

    At the turn of the year 2020, while both Raikoke and Ulawun aerosols were still present in the stratosphere, a dramatic bushfire event accompanied by vigorous fire-induced thunderstorms (PyroCb) in eastern Australia caused a massive injection of smoke into the stratosphere. The early detections of stratospheric smoke by OMPS-LP suggest that the zonal-mean SAOD perturbation caused by this event exceeds the previous record-breaking PyroCb-related perturbation after the British Columbia fires in August 2017. We use satellite observations of aerosol and trace gases (H2O, CO) to characterize the stratospheric impact of the wildfires and contrast it with that of volcanic eruptions.

How to cite: Khaykin, S., Godin-Beekmann, S., Taha, G., Feofilov, A., Bourassa, A., Rieger, L., and Hauchecorne, A.: Recent evolution of stratospheric aerosol load from ground-based lidars and satellites: impact of volcanic eruptions and wildfires. , EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-11246,, 2020

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Presentation version 5 – uploaded on 05 May 2020
figure caption fix
  • CC1: Comment on EGU2020-11246: comparison of volcanic plume rise, Thomas Aubry, 05 May 2020

    Dear Sergey et al,

    Really nice presentation, thanks for sharing!

    On slide 4, in the bottom left slide, you highlight some interesting differences in the rise of volcanic plumes. The Raikoke plume rises for much longer compared to Calbuco and Kelud, but during the first week, the latter plumes have a very sharp rise by ca. 4km vs only ca. 0.5km for Raikoke. Do you have any interpretation for why the lofting was so different during the first few days for these eruptions?




    • AC1: Reply to CC1, Sergey Khaykin, 05 May 2020

      Dear Thomas,

      Thanks! The sharp rise of Kelud and Calbuco plume tops during the first days is probably due to underestimation of injection altitude in our preliminary analysis based on OMPS-LP profiling. We should be able to get better estimates using CALIOP high-resolution data. The point here is that Ke and Ca plumes don't rise during the following months, whereas Raikoke plume does. 

      Best, Sergey

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