Abstract

The vibration-rotational Raman lidar system built in Xi’an, China (34.233°N, 108.911°E) was used to simultaneously detect atmospheric temperature, water vapor, and aerosols under different weather conditions. Temperature measurement examples showed good agreement with radiosonde data in terms of the lapse rates and heights of the inversion layer under the lower stratosphere. The statistical temperature error due to the signal-to-noise ratio is less than 1 K up to a height of 15 km, and is estimated to be less than 3 K below a height of 22 km. High-quality temperature data were collected from 70 nighttime observations from October 2013 to May 2014, and were used to analyze the temperature inversion characteristics at Xi’an, which is a typical city in the northwest of China. The tropopause height over the Xi’an area was almost 17–18 km, and the inversion layer often formed above the cloud layer. In the winter at night, inversions within the boundary layer can easily form with a high occurrence of 60% based on 47 nights from 01 November 2013 to 21 January 2014. Continuous observation of atmospheric temperature, water vapor (relative humidity), and aerosols was carried out during one night, and the relevant changes were analyzed in the boundary layer via the joint observation of atmospheric visibility, PM2.5 and PM10 from a ground visibility meter and from a monitoring site, which revealed that the temperature inversion layer has a great influence on the formation of fog and haze during the winter night and early morning.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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