Arctic Methane: AIRS videos
Chris R writes: Arctic Methane: AIRS videos.
There’s been a flurry of activity on the ‘net about methane and the Arctic recently. This seems to be related to the AGU poster by Semilitov & Shakhova and new research from them due for publication this year. The ever-excellent Realclimate have posted two articles by Dr David Archer, here and here. Neven’s Sea-Ice blog (also excellent) addresses the issue here.
I’m busy reading up on the subject. In the meantime Dr Leonid Yurganov has been kind enough to give permission for me to put some of his satellite images into videos. The images are derived from NASA’s Atmospheric Infra-red Sounder (AIRS), info and data. Version 5 of the retrieval algorithm is used. The images are available here. Those interested may want to read Dr Yurganov’s presentation to a London symposium on Arctic methane (pdf – right click and ‘save as’), it’s informative and well worth spending time on.
There are 12 videos each covering the full set of data for one month. Due to the large intra-annual variability this seemed the best approach. I’ll be referring to these in due course but for now they’re posted so that anyone who’s interested can make use of them. They’re done as links because the Blogger video interface is too small (and I can’t be bothered manually editing all the html entries).
Bear in mind that these show methane at 400mbar height so any large surface fluxes will be mixed unless plumed up into the atmosphere. For example the AIRS website has a graphic of a plume of methane at 200mbar implying signifcantly higher concentrations at the surface. That page also states AIRS is most sensitive around 200mbar with an accuracy of 1.2 to 1.5%.
I’ll keep an eye on their viewing statistics to see if it’s worth updating them as time goes by, if you find them useful and want me to update regularly just ask.