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Study of variation of aerosol optical properties over a high altitude station in Indian Western Himalayan region, palampur using raman lidar system


A Raman lidar system was operated along with the Microtops sunphotometer measurements to carry out the study of the variation of the optical properties of aerosols over Palampur (32.11° N and 76.53° E), India from 17th April to 11th May 2019. The lidar system is furnished with Raman (N2) channel and depolarization channel allowing independent measurement of Lidar Ratio (LR) and linear depolarization ratio. The study reveals that the majority of the aerosols approximately were restricted within the planetary boundary layer (PBL) and very less loading was present in the free troposphere over the study location. The particle loading over the study period was found to be very less with aerosol backscatter coefficient (at 355 nm) ranging from ∼0.13 Mm−1sr−1 to ∼7.25 Mm−1sr−1 with mean value of 2.67 ± 0.82 Mm−1sr−1 and it is well supplemented by the mean aerosol optical depth (AOD) of 0.37 ± 0.13 obtained from Microtops Sunphotometer. The average lidar ratio values for 0-1 km altitude (L1) 72 ± 13sr, for 1-2 km (L2) altitude 55 ± 8sr, for 2-3 km (L3) 54 ± 15sr were observed as suggesting dominance of the biomass burning aerosols and anthropogenic aerosols. The particle depolarization ratio (355 nm) values were found from approximately 4.8 ± 2.7% to 11.5 ± 1.9% with the mean value of 7 ± 1.3% suggesting the presence of non-spherical particles. To trace the sources of the pollution, we derived the HYSPLIT trajectory which shows the majority of the movement was from local sources.

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Authors are grateful to Director, CSIR- National Physical Laboratory for necessary support. Authors are thankful to CSIR network project PSC-0112 for necessary financial support. Mr. Shishir Kumar Singh is thankful to University Grant Commission (UGC) for providing research fellowship and also to Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research (AcSIR) for facilitating as its PhD student.


Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), India.

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Correspondence to S. R. Radhakrishnan.

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Singh, S.K., Radhakrishnan, S.R., Jaswant et al. Study of variation of aerosol optical properties over a high altitude station in Indian Western Himalayan region, palampur using raman lidar system. J Atmos Chem 79, 117–139 (2022).

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  • Optical properties of aerosols and clouds
  • High altitude station
  • Lidar ratio
  • Depolarization ratio
  • Raman lidar