August 27, 2014

High AOD due to Wildfire Smoke in Canada and Calfornia/Oregon; Code Yellow and Orange PM2.5 AQI; Remnant smoke form Baltimore

Today's satellite imagery continues to capture smoke, from wildfires in California. Oregon and Canada. The smoke is the cause for the high AOD values in the west (0.4-1) and east (0.1-0.2) coast. The top left image is the MODIS Aqua AOD product, which shows signs of dense smoke over northern California and west-central Oregon. The top right image is the AOD product for the same satellite/sensor but for the Mid-Atlantic region. In the east coast aerosols can be seen stretching from Maine/Massachusetts down to the Mid-Atlantic.

The PM2.5 concentrations reached Moderate (Code Yellow) to Unhealthy for Sensitive (Code Orange) Groups AQi levels, as shown in the Airnow animation. The Code Orange levels were reported in the vicinity of the northern California/Oregon wildfires. The eastern half of the US reported Code Yellow levels as very warm, sunny, and stagnant conditions were experienced over this region. Lidar observations at UMBC shows a thin residual layer of particles near 1.6-1.8 km during the first three hours of observations. As the PBL grew the smoke aloft blended with the aerosols confined within the PBL, and as the day progressed scattering increased near the surface. The PBL extended up to heights near 1.6 km. Airmass backtrajectories (not shown) suggest that today's airmass over Baltimore came from locations North from Baltimore.

Posted by Ruben Delgado at August 27, 2014 11:56 PM
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