Microphysical and optical properties of aerosol were studied during a mega-fire event in summer 2012 over Siberia using ground-based measurements of spectral solarradiation at the AERONET site in Tomsk and satellite observations. The data were analyzed using multi-year (2003-2013) measurements of aerosol characteristics under back-ground conditions and for less intense fires, differing in burning biomass type, stage of fire, remoteness from observation site, etc. (ordinary smoke). In June-August 2012, the average aerosol optical depth (AOD, 500 nm) had been 0.95+/-0.86, about a factor of 6 larger than background values (0.16+/-0.08), and a factor of 2.5 larger than in ordinary smoke. The AOD values were extremely high on 24-28 July and reached 3-5. A comparison with satellite observations showed that ground-based measurements in the region of Tomsk not only reflect the local AOD features, but are also characteristic for the territory of Western Siberia as a whole. Single scattering albedo (SSA, 440 nm) in this period ranged from 0.91 to 0.99 with an average of approx. 0.96 in the entire wavelength range of 440-1020 nm. The increase in absorptance of aerosol particles (SSA(440 nm)=0.92) and decrease in SSA with wavelength observed in ordinary smoke agree with the data from multi-year observations in analogous situations in the boreal zone of USA and Canada. Volume aerosol size distribution in extreme and ordinary smoke had a bimodal character with significant prevalence of fine-mode particles, but in summer 2012 the mean median radius and the width of the fine-mode distribution somewhat increased. In contrast to data from multi-year observations, in summer 2012 an increase in the volume concentration and median radius of the coarse mode was observed with growing AOD.
Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (e-ISSN 1867-8548); 10; 1; 179-198