Comparison of Two Air Pollution Episodes over Northeast China in Winter 2016/17 Using Ground-Based Lidar
This study analyzes and compares aerosol properties and meteorological conditions during two air pollution episodes in 19–22 (E1) and 25–26 (E2) December 2016 in Northeast China. The visibility, particulate matter (PM) mass concentration, and surface meteorological observations were examined, together with the planetary boundary layer (PBL) properties and vertical profiles of aerosol extinction coefficient and volume depolarization ratio that were measured by a ground-based lidar in Shenyang of Liaoning Province, China during December 2016–January 2017. Results suggest that the low PBL height led to poor pollution dilution in E1, while the high PBL accompanied by low visibility in E2 might have been due to cross-regional and vertical air transmission. The PM mass concentration decreased as the PBL height increased in E1 while these two variables were positively correlated in E2. The enhanced winds in E2 diffused the pollutants and contributed largely to the aerosol transport. Strong temperature inversion in E1 resulted in increased PM2.5 and PM10 concentrations, and the winds in E2 favoured the southwesterly transport of aerosols from the North China Plain into the region surrounding Shenyang. The large extinction coefficient was partially attributed to the local pollution under the low PBL with high ground-surface PM mass concentrations in E1, whereas the cross-regional transport of aerosols within a high PBL and the low PM mass concentration near the ground in E2 were associated with severe aerosol extinction at high altitudes. These results may facilitate better understanding of the vertical distribution of aerosol properties during winter pollution events in Northeast China.
Key wordsaerosol pollution ground-based lidar Northeast China
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