Satellite Remote Sensing of the Middle Atmosphere using Optical Limb Observations
Satellite-based remote sensing observations of the stratosphere and mesosphere in limb viewing geometry allow retrieving a large variety of different atmospheric parameters in the UV/vis/NIR spectral range. These measurements can be based on absorption spectroscopy employing the sun as the lightsource. Alternatively they can be based on emission spectroscopy exploiting non-thermal airglow emissions. Both measurement principles allow retrieving chemical composition and temperature information. Limb-scatter observations on the Earth’s dayside can also be employed to obtain information on atmospheric aerosols, including noctilucent or polar mesospheric clouds, polar stratospheric clouds, stratospheric sulphate aerosols and tropospheric clouds. The limb observation geometry combines the advantages of traditional nadir and occulation geometries, because it allows near-global observations of vertical profile information with high vertical resolution. This seminar provides an overview of the main characteristics of the limb viewing geometry, its advantages and disadvantages, and will also present science highlights from the SCIAMACHY/Envisat mission.
Christian von Savigny began his career with in physics, mathematics and atmospheric science at the Universities of Tuebingen (Germany) and York University. He completed his Ph.D. studies in Earth and Space Science at York University in 2002 with a thesis on stratospheric ozone profile retrievals from OSIRIS limb-scattered sunlight observations. After being assistant professor at the University of Bremen (Germany) he became professor of Environmental Physics at Ernst-Moritz-Arndt-University of Greifswald (Germany) in 2012. His research interests include the physics and chemistry of the middle atmosphere, remote sensing, aerosols and airglow.