Publication

LISA: a lightweight stratospheric air sampler

Hooghiem, J. J. D., de Vries, M., Been, H. A., Heikkinen, P., Kivi, R. & Chen, H., 20-Dec-2018, In : Atmospheric Measurement Techniques. 11, 12, p. 6785-6801 17 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

We developed a new lightweight stratospheric air sampler (LISA). The LISA sampler is designed to collect four bag samples in the stratosphere during a balloon flight for CO2, CH4 and CO mole fraction measurements. It consists of four multi-layer foil (MLF) sampling bags, a custom-made manifold, and a diaphragm pump, with a total weight of ∼2.5 kg.

A series of laboratory storage tests were performed to assess the stability of CO2, CH4 and CO mole fractions in both MLF and Tedlar bags. The MLF bag was chosen due to its better overall performance than the Tedlar bag for the three species CO2, CH4 and CO. Furthermore, we evaluated the performance of the pump under low pressure conditions to optimize a trade-off between the vertical resolution and the sample size.

The LISA sampler was flown on the same balloon flight with an AirCore in Sodankylä, Finland (67.368∘ N, 26.633∘ E, 179 m a.s.l.), on 26 April and 4–7 September 2017. A total of 15 stratospheric air samples were obtained during the ascent of four flights. The sample size ranges between 800 and 180 mL for the altitude between 12 and 25 km, with the corresponding vertical resolution ranging from 0.5 to 1.5 km. The collected air samples were analysed for CO2, CH4 and CO mole fractions, and evaluated against AirCore retrieved profiles, showing mean differences of 0.84 ppm for CO2, 1.8 ppb for CH4 and 6.3 ppb for CO, respectively.

High-accuracy stratospheric measurements of greenhouse gas mole fractions are useful to validate remote sensing measurements from ground and from space, which has been performed primarily by comparison with collocated aircraft measurements (0.15–13 km), and more recently with AirCore observations (0–30 km). While AirCore is capable of achieving high-accuracy greenhouse gas mole fraction measurements, it is challenging to obtain accurate altitude registration for AirCore measurements. The LISA sampler provides a viable low-cost tool for retrieving stratospheric air samples for greenhouse gas measurements that is complementary to AirCore. Furthermore, the LISA sampler is advantageous in both the vertical resolution and sample size for performing routine stratospheric measurements of the isotopic composition of trace gases.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6785-6801
Number of pages17
JournalAtmospheric Measurement Techniques
Volume11
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 20-Dec-2018

    Keywords

  • ISOTOPIC COMPOSITION, CARBON-DIOXIDE, MEAN AGE, BALLOON, METHANE, AIRCORE, CO2, VALIDATION, EVOLUTION, OPERATION

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