Using SEVIRI fire observations to drive smoke plumes in the CMAQ air quality model: The case of Antalya in 2008

G. Baldassarre*, L. Pozzoli, C. C. Schmidt, A. Unal, T. Kindap, W. P. Menzel, S. Whitburn, P. F. Coheur, A. Kavgaci, J. W. Kaiser

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Among the atmospheric emission sources, wildfires are episodic events characterized by large spatial and temporal variability. Therefore, accurate information on fire gaseous and aerosol emissions for specific regions and seasons is critical for air quality forecasts. The Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager (SEVIRI) in geostationary orbit provides fire observations over Africa and the Mediterranean with a unique temporal resolution of 15min. It thus resolves the complete fire life cycle and captures the fires' peak intensities, which is not possible in MODIS-based fire emission inventories like GFAS. We evaluate two different operational Fire Radiative Power (FRP) products derived from SEVIRI, by studying the case of a large forest fire in Antalya, Turkey, in July-August 2008. The EUMETSAT LSA SAF product has higher FRP values during the fire episode than the WF-ABBA product. It is also in better agreement with the colocated, gridded MODIS FRP. Both products miss small fires that frequently occur in the region and are detected by MODIS. Emissions are derived from the FRP products. They are used along-side GFAS emissions in smoke plume simulations with WRF and the Community Multiscale Air Quality model (CMAQ). Comparisons with MODIS AOT and IASI CO and NH3 observations show that including the diurnal variability of fire emissions improves the spatial distribution and peak concentrations of the simulated smoke plumes associated to the large fire. They also show a large discrepancy between the currently available operational FRP products, with the LSA SAF one being the most appropriate.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-46
Number of pages46
JournalAtmospheric Chemistry and Physics Discussions
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jan 2015

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