The rationale and program design for the NASA Global Tropospheric Experiment (GTE) are described. The GTE is intended to characterize the global tropospheric chemistry and its interaction with the stratosphere, the land, and the ocean. The program emphasis is laid on the potential global impact of human activities, particularly those which release CH4, N2O, and chlorofluorocarbons into the atmosphere. Specific tasks defined thus far include characterizing the tropospheric gas-phase chemistry of OH, NO, and NO2, determining concentrations and distributions of CO, CH4, O3, and N2O, as well as halogens, trace metals, and reduced sulfur species. Techniques are needed for measuring the chemical fluxes between earth surface sources and sinks, the boundary layer, the free troposphere, and the stratosphere. The first phase of the GTE will be to test and develop techniques and assay the detection limits for OH, NO, and NO2 and assess the reliability of laboratory calibrations. Improvements in modelling global-scale tropospheric processes will also be pursued.
METEOROLOGY AND CLIMATOLOGY
EOS (ISSN 0096-3941); 64; 561-563