Annual and seasonal cycles of CO2 and CH4 in a Mediterranean Spanish environment using different kernel functions

  • Beatriz Fernández-DuqueEmail author
  • Isidro A. Pérez
  • M. Ángeles García
  • Nuria Pardo
  • M. Luisa Sánchez
Original Paper


This paper is based on CO2 and CH4 semi-hourly mole fraction measurements obtained at the Low Atmosphere Research Centre (CIB) between 2010 and 2016 using a Picarro G1301 analyser. The main aims of the study were to examine the temporal variation of CO2 and CH4 by using six different kernel functions, and to study the suitability of these functions to the dataset. The method used for the current study was based on experimental contour plots of R2 values in order to simultaneously determine the bandwidths of kernel functions for the long-term and short-term. An Epanechnikov, a Gaussian, a biweight, a triangular, a tricubic and a rectangular kernel function were applied to extract the salient features of both the long-term (trend) and the short-term (seasonality). The average linear increase growth rates found were mainly attributed to the terrestrial biosphere cycle and changes in the atmospheric circulation regime. The seasonal cycle exhibited a cyclical variation, revealing summer minima for both gases, which may be explained by a biological minimum. Kernel analysis showed two nocturnal CO2 maxima, in spring and autumn, linked to an increase in rainfall. For CO2 daytime records, only the spring peak was detected. As regards CH4, the maximum was located in winter. The best fit for the trend was obtained by the biweight kernel. In contrast, the best adjustment for seasonality was achieved from the Gaussian and the triangular kernel. To sum up, optimal bandwidth selection is important when kernel regression functions are employed. Since no important differences were found between the kernels employed, those which involve least computational effort are recommended.


Trend Seasonal cycle Rural Kernel functions Bandwidth Contour plot 



The authors of this paper acknowledge financial support from the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness and ERDF funds (Projects CGL2009-11979 and CGL2014-53948-P). The authors sincerely thank the editor and the two anonymous referees for their valuable comments and remarks.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Beatriz Fernández-Duque
    • 1
    Email author
  • Isidro A. Pérez
    • 1
  • M. Ángeles García
    • 1
  • Nuria Pardo
    • 1
  • M. Luisa Sánchez
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Applied Physics. Faculty of SciencesUniversity of ValladolidValladolidSpain

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