Global Climate Role of Biomass Burning Aerosols and Brown Carbon

Lead PI: Konstantin Latychev , Susanne Bauer

Unit Affiliation: Center for Climate Systems Research (CCSR)

Unit Affiliation: NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS)

September 2022 - August 2025
North America ; United States
Project Type: Fellowship

DESCRIPTION: As biomass burning events increase in frequency and intensity, the climate role of biomass burning aerosols like brown carbon (BrC) will become more important. However, more work is needed to reduce the uncertainty such species bring to Earth system models. Using the GISS ModelE Earth system model, the proposed project will evaluate ModelE’s representation of BrC and biomass burning aerosols. Model output will be compared to in-situ measurements of BrC from the ATom flight campaigns, as well as aerosol optical properties from remote sensing and ground-based datasets, including MODIS, OMI and AERONET. The evaluated aerosol scheme will then be used to predict future radiative forcing, and therefore the climate role, of biomass burning aerosols with both prescribed (from biomass burning inventories) and interactive (from the ModelE pyrE interactive fire module) emissions. This work will increase the predictive capability of ModelE by improving biomass burning aerosol representation. Additionally, predictions of future biomass burning climate effects will better equip scientists and policymakers with knowledge in climate change mitigation efforts.


National Aeronautics & Space Administration-NASA




Maegan DeLessio


NASA Goddard Space Flight Center