Investigating the Aerosol Type and Spatial Distribution During Winter Fog Conditions over Indo-Gangetic Plains

  • Muhammad Fahim Khokhar
  • Naila Yasmin
Part of the Springer Remote Sensing/Photogrammetry book series (SPRINGERREMO)


The South Asian region in general and the Indo-Gangetic Plains (IGP) in particular hold about 1/6th of the world’s population is considered as one of the major hotspots of atmospheric pollution. Fog is a major meteorological phenomenon which can generate significant social and economic disruptions. Meteorological stations provide information about the fog episodes only on the basis of point observation. Continuous monitoring as well as a spatially coherent picture of fog distribution can only be possible through the complementary use of satellite imagery. This study focuses on winter fog episodes over South Asian region using the Moderate Resolution Image Spectrometer (MODIS) and OMI Aerosol Product in combination with Fire, nitrogen dioxide (NO2), sulphur dioxide (SO2), and carbon monoxide (CO) datasets. MOD04 level 2 Collection 6 data is used to study aerosol load. Spatial distribution and types of aerosols are characterized using aerosol type over land product from MODIS. UV Aerosol Absorbing Index (UVAAI) from ozone monitoring instrument was also used for aerosol characterization over South Asia. The MODIS-derived aerosol optical depth was validated with independent ground-based measurements from the AErosol RObotic NETwork (AERONET) stations across the Indo-Gangetic plains. A significant correlation between MODIS (AOD) and AERONET Station (AOD) data was identified. The objectives of the study were to map the spatial extent of aerosol and their types during special weather conditions like fog over IGP. Absorbing aerosols originating from biomass burning activities are predominant in IGP. The spatial and temporal correlations between AOD and tropospheric columns of NO2, SO2, and CO are used to infer information about source region and composition of aerosol particles in IGP region.


AOD MODIS AERONET IGP Winter Fog Aerosol Absorbing Index 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Environmental Sciences and EngineeringNational University of Sciences and TechnologyIslamabadPakistan

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