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Geoscientific Model Development An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-2020-121
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-2020-121
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: development and technical paper 29 Jun 2020

Submitted as: development and technical paper | 29 Jun 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal GMD.

On tuning of atmospheric inverse methods: Comparison on ETEX and Chernobyl datasets using FLEXPART v8.1 and v10.3

Ondřej Tichý1, Lukáš Ulrych1, Václav Šmídl1, Nikolaos Evangeliou2, and Andreas Stohl3 Ondřej Tichý et al.
  • 1Institute of Information Theory and Automation, Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, Czech Republic
  • 2NILU: Norwegian Institute for Air Research, Kjeller, Norway
  • 3Department of Meteorology and Geophysics, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria

Abstract. Estimation of the temporal profile of an atmospheric release, also called the source term, is an important problem in environmental sciences. The problem can be formalized as a linear inverse problem where the unknown source term is optimized to minimize the difference between the measurements and the corresponding model predictions. The problem is typically ill-posed due to low sensor coverage of a release and due to uncertainties e.g. in measurements or atmospheric transport modeling, hence, all state-of-the-art methods are based on some form of regularization of the problem using additional information. We consider two kinds of additional information, the prior source term, also known as the first guess, and regularization parameters for shape of the source term. While the first guess is based on information independent of the measurements, such as physics of the potential release or previous estimations, the regularization parameters are often selected by the designers of the optimization procedure. In this paper, we provide a sensitivity study of two inverse methodologies on the choice of the prior source term as well as regularization parameters of the methods. The sensitivity is studied in two cases: data from the European Tracer Experiment (ETEX) using FLEXPART v8.1 and the caesium-134 and caesium-137 dataset from the Chernobyl accident using FLEXPART v10.3.

Ondřej Tichý et al.

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Latest update: 10 Jul 2020
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Short summary
We study the estimation of the temporal profile of an atmospheric release using formalization as a linear inverse problem. The problem is typically ill-posed, hence, all state-of-the-art methods need some form of regularization of the problem using additional information. We provide sensitivity study on the prior source term and regularization parameters for shape of the source term with demonstration on the ETEX experimental release and the Cs-134 and Cs-137 dataset from the Chernobyl accident.
We study the estimation of the temporal profile of an atmospheric release using formalization as...
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