Radiance simulations of selected atmospheric species at different observer attitudes for ground-based FTIR spectroscopy: implications for aerosol polluted sites in West Africa

  • O K Nwofor
  • T C Chineke


The pure air and clear sky conditions necessary for continuous Fourier Transform Infra-Red (FTIR) measurements of trace gases are issues of concern for West African sites. This is due to possible severe interruption by Sahara dust outbreak, which leaves trails throughout the year. Using data simulated by means of an atmospheric radiative transfer code, it is strengthened that the lower strengths observed for selected trace gas absorption spectra for higher observation altitudes may imply that increasing measurement altitudes or initiating balloon measurements to avoid aerosols and its associated haze conditions would be at the risk of managing reduced FTIR signatures. Continuous FTIR measurements in aerosol-polluted regions on the other hand can be a novel method for establishing more links between mineral aerosols and trace gas mixing ratios and or heterogeneous chemistry.

Keywords: Trace gases, FTIR, spectroscopy, aerosols, and atmospheric pollution.

Nigerian Journal of Physics Vol. 18 (2) 2006: pp. 227-234