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IHALOME: Innovation in Halocarbon Measurements and Emission Validation

English title IHALOME: Innovation in Halocarbon Measurements and Emission Validation
Applicant Reimann Stefan
Number 175921
Funding scheme Project funding (Div. I-III)
Research institution Luftfremdstoffe / Umwelttechnik 500 - Mobility, Energy and Environment EMPA
Institution of higher education Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology - EMPA
Main discipline Climatology. Atmospherical Chemistry, Aeronomy
Start/End 01.09.2018 - 30.04.2023
Approved amount 524'928.00
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All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Climatology. Atmospherical Chemistry, Aeronomy
Other disciplines of Environmental Sciences

Keywords (5)

emission verification; halocarbons; ozone depletion; greenhouse gases; TOF-MS

Lay Summary (German)

Lead
Halogenierte Treibhausgase: Bestimmung der Emissionen in Europe und der Schweiz sowie Suche nach unbekannten Substanzen
Lay summary

Halogenierte organische Verbindungen tragen zum Treibhauseffekt bei und verursachen, falls sie Chlor oder Brom enthalten, den Abbau der Ozonschicht in der Stratosphäre. Die langfristige Beobachtung dieser Stoffe mit Hilfe von kontinuierlichen Messungen kann dazu verwendet werden ihre Emissionen zu quantifizieren und deren regionale Verteilung zu bestimmen. Zusätzlich können neue, bisher unbekannte halogenierte Substanzen in der Atmosphäre gefunden werden was Rückschlüsse über deren Quellen erlaubt. Diese Bestimmung der Emissionen wird ermöglicht durch Inversionsmodellen, in welchen Messungen mit präzisen meteorologischen Informationen kombiniert werden.

In IHALOME werden einerseits mit Hilfe von mehrmonatigen Kampagnen an Orten wo bislang noch keine Messungen stattfanden regionale Quellen und deren Emissionsstärke bestimmt. So werden erste Messungen in Estland erstmals Abschätzungen der Emissionen über Nordosteuropa und bis nach Russland erlauben. Eine weitere Kampagne findet an einem Turm in den Niederlanden statt, wo die holländischen Quellen mit denjenigen im Inventar verglichen werden können. Zusätzlich wird eine längere Kampagne in Beromünster stattfinden womit bessere Abschätzungen der bis anhin nur vom Jungfraujoch abgeschätzten Schweizer Emissionen möglich werden.

Zusätzlich wird mit einem neuen Messverfahren (Gaschromatographie-time of flight Massenpektrometer) die Suche nach bisher unentdeckten halogenierten organischen Verbindungen in der Atmosphäre intensiviert. Dieses System hat das Potential die bisherigen Erfolge der Empa auf diesem Gebiet zu bestätigen und in der Zukunft ein Teil eines Frühwarnsystems zu sein, damit keine unbemerkte Akkumulation von diesen Stoffen in der Atmosphäre stattfinden kann.

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 10.10.2017

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
137638 Measurement-based verification of regional emissions of halogenated greenhouse gases 01.04.2012 Project funding (Div. I-III)
157689 APRECON-GC-TOFMS: Advanced PRECONcentration and GC-TOFMS analysis for atmospheric halocarbons, related to ozone depletion and climate change 01.09.2015 R'EQUIP

Abstract

Atmospheric halocarbons contribute to global warming and are harmful to the stratospheric ozone layer. Observing their atmospheric abundance and quantifying their emissions is thus critical for predicting the related future impact on climate change and on the recovery of the ozone layer. In terms of atmospheric observations IHALOME will benefit from a novel analytical system acquired through a recent SNF R'equip grant, which combines a sophisticated preconcentration unit (APRECON), recently developed at Empa, with a state-of-the art GC-TOFMS. This system has significant advantages compared to the established Medusa quadrupole GC-MS, which is currently available at Jungfraujoch and at the Empa laboratory. The power of the APRECON-GC-TOFMS will be fully exploited in IHALOME for the analysis of atmospheric halocarbons with unprecedented selectivity and for the search of yet undetected halogenated trace gases. Detection limits as low as 1 ppq (parts-per quadrillion, 1x10-15) are expected, which converts to a burden of ~ 20 t in the global atmosphere. Furthermore, as all masses are detected simultaneously, the APRECON-GC-TOFMS offers the unique opportunity to initiate a digital air archive and to store fingerprints of currently unidentified trace gases, which can be analyzed in future studies. To take the best profit of the APRECON-GC-TOFMS, the system will be operated within a controlled laboratory environment at Empa.On the side of inverse emission estimation IHALOME will use newly available high-resolution meteorological model fields, atmospheric transport models and observations at sites with previously sparse data coverage, for quantifying regional emissions of halogenated greenhouse gases with an unprecedented spatial resolution and coverage. New methods for a more objective quantification of the uncertainty covariances (data-mismatch, a-priori) will be implemented and evaluated. Then, the model system will be employed to estimate regional emissions. For the estimation of Swiss emissions, a Medusa GC-MS will be installed for a 6-month campaign at the recently established NABEL site Beromünster - a former 217 m tall radio tower. Atmospheric observations at the Beromünster tower, situated in central Switzerland, show a surface sensitivity that almost perfectly covers the Swiss Plateau. The site is thus ideally complementing the existing continuous measurements at Jungfraujoch, which are better representing the European background but have little surface sensitivity on the Swiss Plateau. For the European scale, additional datasets will be produced by the Medusa GC-MS instrument during two 6-month measurement campaigns at two tall tower sites in the Netherlands (Cabauw) and in Estonia (Jä-rvselja). These sites cover areas in Europe for which no reliable measurement-based information on emissions of halogenated greenhouse gases is currently available.The research done within IHALOME will be a major step forward in the application of inverse methods for real-world validation of country-level emissions related to legal treaties, such as the European F-gas regulation, the Kigali Amendment of the Montreal Protocol and the Paris Agreement within the framework of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
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