Stratospheric aerosols impact the radiative forcing and thus the energy balance of the Earth’s atmosphere, therefore information about their distribution and variability is of high importance for climate related studies. The main scientific objective of the project CREST is creating a new merged long-term time series of the vertically resolved aerosol extinction coefficients using data records from six limb and occultation satellite instruments: SAGE II, OSIRIS, GOMOS, SCIAMACHY and OMPS-LP instruments for the years from 1984 to present.
The merged aerosol extinction coefficient is computed as the median of the adjusted data from the individual instruments. The merging of aerosol profiles is performed by transformation the aerosol datasets from individual satellite instruments to the same wavelength, i.e., 750 nm, and their de-biasing and homogenization by adjusting the seasonal cycles. The merged time series of vertically resolved monthly mean aerosol extinction coefficients at 750 nm is provided in 10° latitudinal bins from 90°S to 90°N, in the altitude range from 8.5 km to 39.5 km. The time series of the stratospheric aerosol optical depth (SAOD) is created by integration of aerosol extinction profiles from the tropopause to 39.5 km; it is also provided as monthly mean data in 10° latitudinal bins.
The created aerosol dataset is in open access at: