Paris, 17 January 2014

First infrared satellite monitoring of peak pollution episodes in China

Plumes of several anthropogenic pollutants (especially particulate matter and carbon monoxide) located near ground level over China have for the first time been detected from space. The work was carried out by a team at the Laboratoire Atmosphères, Milieux, Observations Spatiales (CNRS / UPMC / UVSQ)1 in collaboration with Belgian researchers and with support from CNES, using measurements by the IASI2 infrared sounder launched on board the MetOp3 satellite. Their groundbreaking results are published online on the website of the journal Geophysical Research Letters dated 17 January 2014. They represent a crucial step towards improved monitoring of regional pollution and forecasting of local pollution episodes, especially in China.

To download the press release : Pollution chine


1The Laboratoire Atmosphères, Milieux, Observations Spatiales is part of the Institut Pierre-Simon Laplace (IPSL).
2IASI (Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer) is an instrument developed by CNES in partnership with Eumetsat. It was launched on board the MetOp satellite. CNES provides Eumetsat with support for certain monitoring and data processing operations. It supports the French research community involved in IASI, and in atmospheric composition more particularly.
3MetOp is the space component of Eumetsat's EPS (Eumetsat Polar System) program, covering 15 years of observation for continuous weather forecasting and monitoring of atmospheric composition using three successive satellites. MetOp-A and MetOp-B were launched in 2006 and 2012 respectively, and the launch of MetOp-C is scheduled for 2017. The MetOp satellites were developed by ESA.


First simultaneous space measurements of atmospheric pollutants in the boundary layer from IASI: a case study in the North China Plain, Anne Boynard, Cathy Clerbaux, Lieven Clarisse, Sarah Safieddine, Matthieu Pommier, Martin Van Damme, Sophie Bauduin, Charlotte Oudot, Juliette Hadji-Lazaro, Daniel Hurtmans and Pierre-Francois Coheur, Geophys. Res. Lett., Online 17 January 2014.
DOI: 10.1002/2013GL058333.


CNRS researcher l Anne Boynard l T +33 1 44 27 70 99 l
CNRS Press Officer l Priscilla Dacher l T +33 1 44 96 46 06 l


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