Characterizing the photochemical environment over China
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The rapid rising anthropogenic emissions driven by economic growth over China documented by satellite observations and bottom-up inventories have led to severely degraded air quality, and also have been suggested to be linked to the recent upward trends of tropospheric O₃ over the regions downwind of China. Multi-scale modeling analyses facilitated by ground-level, aircraft and satellite observations have been conducted to understand the atmospheric chemistry over China. Analyses using a 1-D photochemical model constrained by measurements at Beijing in August of 2007 suggest that reactive aromatic VOCs are the major source (~75%) of peroxy acetyl nitrate (PAN). Detailed radical budget analyses reveal the very fast ROₓ (OH + HO₂ + RO₂) production, recycling and destruction driven by VOC oxidation and heterogeneous processes. Photoenhanced aerosol surface uptake of NO₂ is found to be the predominant source of nitrous acid (HONO) during daytime (~70%). 3-D regional modeling analyses of tropospheric vertical column densities of glyoxal (CHOCHO) from SCIAMACHY show that anthropogenic emissions of aromatic VOCs are substantially underestimated (by a factor of 5 - 6, regionally varied) over China. Such an underestimation is the main cause of a large missing source of CHOCHO over the region in current global models, and could also partly explain the underestimation of organic aerosols in previous modeling studies.