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Evaluation of the Community Multiscale Air Quality Model for Simulating Winter Ozone Formation in the Uinta Basin.
Matichuk, R., G. Tonnesen, D. Luecken, R. Gilliam, S. Napelenok, K. Baker, D. Schwede, B. Murphy, D. Helmig, S. Lyman, AND S. Roselle. Evaluation of the Community Multiscale Air Quality Model for Simulating Winter Ozone Formation in the Uinta Basin. JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH-ATMOSPHERES. American Geophysical Union, Washington, DC, 122(24):13545-13572, (2017).
The goal of this study was to use the Weather Research and Forecasting model (WRF) and the Community Multiscale Air Quality (CMAQ) model to explore the chemical and physical processes that control the elevated levels of surface O3 associated with O&G emissions in the Uinta Basin during the winter of 2013. This detailed understanding is critical for developing accurate, efficient and cost-effective strategies to reduce ozone formation
The Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) and Community Multiscale Air Quality (CMAQ) models were used to simulate a 10 day high‐ozone episode observed during the 2013 Uinta Basin Winter Ozone Study (UBWOS). The baseline model had a large negative bias when compared to ozone (O3) and volatile organic compound (VOC) measurements across the basin. Contrary to other wintertime Uinta Basin studies, predicted nitrogen oxides (NOx) were typically low compared to measurements. Increases to oil and gas VOC emissions resulted in O3 predictions closer to observations, and nighttime O3 improved when reducing the deposition velocity for all chemical species. Vertical structures of these pollutants were similar to observations on multiple days. However, the predicted surface layer VOC mixing ratios were generally found to be underestimated during the day and overestimated at night. While temperature profiles compared well to observations, WRF was found to have a warm temperature bias and too low nighttime mixing heights. Analyses of more realistic snow heat capacity in WRF to account for the warm bias and vertical mixing resulted in improved temperature profiles, although the improved temperature profiles seldom resulted in improved O3 profiles. While additional work is needed to investigate meteorological impacts, results suggest that the uncertainty in the oil and gas emissions contributes more to the underestimation of O3. Further, model adjustments based on a single site may not be suitable across all sites within the basin.
Record Details:Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Organization:U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
NATIONAL EXPOSURE RESEARCH LABORATORY
COMPUTATIONAL EXPOSURE DIVISION
ATMOSPHERIC MODEL DEVELOPMENT BRANCH