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AIRFORCE: Aircraft influences and radiative forcing from emissions

AIRFORCE: Effecten van vliegtuigen en stralingsforcering van emissies


Global air traffic has increased extensively during the last few decades and is expected to increase further over the next 20 years by about 5-6% per year. Emissions of trace gases such as carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, sulphur oxides, water vapour and soot from aircraft can have environmental effects and contribute directly or indirectly to global warming. The three institutes (IMAU, KNMI en RIVM) that form the Netherlands Centre for Climate Research (CKO) participated in the AIRFORCE project (Aircraft Influences and Radiative Forcing from Emissions). The goals of AIRFORCE are: Research on the effect of aircraft emissions on the composition of the atmosphere and on the direct and indirect effects of aircraft emissions on radiative forcing and climate. The model results indicate that NOx emissions from aircraft cause an increase in the NOx and ozone concentrations in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere, and a positive radiative forcing. The dynamical and chemical mechanisms of several 3-dimensional chemical-transport models (CTMK/TM3 and MOGUNTIA) have been improved considerable in the project. The results have been compared with available measurements from the STREAM/AIRFORCE and POLINAT campaigns. To account for the chemical conversion and dispersion directly behind an aircraft, an aircraft plume model has been developed in the AIRFORCE project, to translate the aircraft NOx emissions into effective emissions that are used as input in the chemical transport models.

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