Submitted as: methods for assessment of models
26 Apr 2022
Submitted as: methods for assessment of models | 26 Apr 2022
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal GMD.

Introducing a VIIRS-based Fire Emission Inventory version 0 (VFEIv0)

Gonzalo A. Ferrada1, Meng Zhou2, Jun Wang1,2, Alexei Lyapustin3, Yujie Wang4, Saulo R. Freitas5, and Gregory R. Carmichael1 Gonzalo A. Ferrada et al.
  • 1Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA
  • 2Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Informatics, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA
  • 3Laboratory for Atmospheres, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, USA
  • 4Joint Center for Earth Systems Technology, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD, USA
  • 5Center for Weather Forecast and Climatic Studies, National Institute for Space Research, São José dos Campos, SP, Brazil

Abstract. A new open biomass burning inventory is presented that relies on the fire radiative power data from the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) onboard the Suomi NPP satellite. This VIIRS-based Fire Emission Inventory (VFEI) provides emission data from early 2012 to 2019 for more than 40 species of gases and aerosols at spatial resolutions of around 500 m. We found that VFEI produces similar results when compared to other major inventories in many regions of the world. Additionally, we conducted regional simulations using VFEI with the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model with chemistry (WRF-Chem) for Southern Africa (September 2016) and North America (July–August 2019). We compared aerosol optical depth (AOD) from the model against two observational datasets: the MODIS Multi-Angle Implementation of Atmospheric Correction (MAIAC) product and AErosol RObotic NETwork (AERONET) stations. Results showed good agreement between both simulations and the datasets, with mean AOD biases of around +0.03 for Southern Africa and –0.01 for North America. Both simulations were not only able to reproduce accurately the AOD magnitudes, but also the inter-diurnal variations of smoke concentration. In addition, we made use of the airborne data from the ObseRvations of Aerosols above CLouds and their intEractionS (ORACLES; Southern Africa) and the Fire Influence on Regional to Global Environments Experiment and Air Quality (FIREX-AQ; North America) campaigns to evaluate the simulations. In Southern Africa, results showed correlations higher than 0.77 when comparing carbon monoxide and black carbon. In North America, correlations were lower and biases higher. However, this is because the model was not able to reproduce the timing, shape, and location of individual plumes over complex terrain (Rocky Mountains) during the FIREX-AQ campaign period.

Gonzalo A. Ferrada et al.

Status: open (until 21 Jun 2022)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse

Gonzalo A. Ferrada et al.

Gonzalo A. Ferrada et al.


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Short summary
The smoke from fires is composed by different compounds that interact with the atmosphere and can create poor air-quality episodes. Here, we present a new fire inventory based on satellite observations from the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS). We named this inventory as VIIRS-based Fire Emission Inventory (VFEI). Advantages of VFEI are its high resolution (~500 m) and that provides information for many species. VFEI is publicly available and provides data since 2012 to date.