Jan-Lukas Tirpitz, a physics student from the IUP working group “Troposphere, free Radicals and volcanic Emissions”, has received his PhD in June.
During his work he pushed the limits of the MAX-DOAS measurement technique, a widely used method for the remote detection of atmospheric constituents. MAX-DOAS is based on the analysis of skylight spectra in the ultra-violet and visible spectral range. An appropriate set of spectra recorded under different viewing directions allows to infer aerosol and trace gas vertical distributions by applying numerical inversion methods.
By implementing novel inversion approaches and making use of the information contained in the polarisation state of skylight, Jan-Lukas showed that the sensitivity to aerosol abundances and aerosol properties can be significantly enhanced. For the first time he was able to infer not only vertical distributions but also aerosol microphysical properties from MAX-DOAS observations.
These findings have important implications for future MAX-DOAS applications in various fields, particularly regarding the effects of aerosols on the atmospheric chemistry, cloud formation and Earth’s radiative balance.
Image credits: Florian Freundt