August 29, 2014

Northern California wildfires affect AODs, AQIs

Looking at the NOAA HMS Smoke and Fire Product (top left), the clumps of small red dots indicate masses of currently burning fires, with smoke plumes being indicated by the grey patches. A plume emanating from the northern California fires is stretching east into Wyoming, with the most dense smoke staying in the Oregon area. The MODIS Aqua image (top right) illustrates increased AODs in this region, almost etching out the path of the smoke as it travels east. Also, the HMS picked up more remnant smoke in Canada, with haze and clouds possibly mixing in as well.

The EPA AIRNow combined AQI loop (bottom left) shows moderate AQIs for the Southeast and Great Lakes, with some USG and Unhealthy AQIs seen in California and Oregon. The NAAPS Aerosol model (bottom right) at 1800 UTC predicts higher sulfates in the East that could affect air quality. In addition, the NAAPS matches the MODIS Aqua image in showing elevated AODs around the Northwest US plume due to the smoke, meaning the California wildfires are affecting air quality in the surrounding area.

Clear skies conditions over Baltimore as shown below in the UMBC lidar timeseries. The boundary layer extended up to 1.3 km.

Posted by Graham Antoszewski at August 29, 2014 11:58 PM
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