Instrumentation and Measurement of Atmospheric Trace Gases

Instrumentation and Measurement of Atmospheric Trace Gases

This lesson provides a detailed overview of the instrumentation used to measure atmospheric trace gases, which include various chemical compounds in Earth's atmosphere, some of which result from combustion or other human-related processes. The instrumentation for measuring trace gases typically falls within one of three analytical approaches, including spectrometric methods (optical and molecular), chromatographic methods, and chemical conversion methods. The lesson then includes a discussion of sensor performance metrics (calibration, uncertainty, time resolution, and precision) associated with these main techniques and provides information for ensuring the representativeness of the observations, including understanding sensor uncertainty and the limitations and applications of particular platforms or designs. This lesson is part of the Instrumentation and Measurement of Atmospheric Parameters course series.