CO2 Budget and Regional Airborne Study: North America 2003
The objective of COBRA 2003 is to test concepts for observations and data assimilation to determine the large scale sources and sinks of greenhouse gases and ozone-destroying gases from North America. The study will cover spatial scales from regional to continental.
In order to predict future climate forcing and to project reocovery of stratospheric ozone from current levels of depletion, we must be able to determine the location and magnitude of emissions and understand them. But current models that simulate emissions of greenhouse gases do not represent current observations of concentrations across latitudes or vertical profiles of these gases within a factor of two. Transport of these gases into the middle and upper atmosphere is uncertain because convection, land ocean exchange, and other atmospheric processes are very difficult to model. The thickness of the atmospheric boundary layer decreases from daytime to nighttime, and transport processes also change seasonally.