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Proceedings Paper

Solar ultraviolet-B radiation in urban environments: Baltimore, Maryland
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Paper Abstract

Ultraviolet radiation from the sun, especially the UVB (280 to 320 nm), has important roles in urban ecosystems, including effects on human health. Broadband UVB radiation is being continuously monitored in the city of Baltimore, MD as part of a long-term ecological research program, the Baltimore Ecosystem Study. This paper compares above-canopy broadband UVB irradiance at the Baltimore station to broadband UVB irradiance at a more-rural station 64 km SE (at Wye Research Center in Queenstown, MD) and a station characterized as suburban within the Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area, 42 km SW (at Beltsville Agricultural Experiment Station). The Baltimore data are from the initial 14 months of measurements there. The solar radiation monitoring station in Baltimore is located on a 33-m-tall building on a high point with no significant obstructions to sky view. The broadband instruments, all of which were provided by the USDA UVB Monitoring and Research Program, were calibrated in the same facility, the NOAA Central UV Calibration Facility in Colorado. In general, UVB irradiances at the three sites were similar. Over all conditions, Baltimore and the suburban site measured 3.4% less irradiance than the rural site. This difference is within the anticipated ±3% calibration uncertainty of the broadband pyranometers. On the 59 days with cloud-free conditions at all three sites, the average differences between measured UVB at the three sites was even smaller; Baltimore measured 1.2% less irradiance than the rural site. On the clear days, differences between total daily irradiance and the trend of daily irradiance through the year were clearly related to total column ozone as indicated by the EPTOMS satellite. High aerosol optical thickness strongly reduced daily UVB dose; whereas [SO2] had no influence. Surface O3 increased with increasing UVB dose when [NO2] exceeded 10 ppb.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 July 2003
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 4896, Ultraviolet Ground- and Space-based Measurements, Models, and Effects II, (1 July 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.466229
Show Author Affiliations
Gordon M. Heisler, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture Forest Service (United States)
Richard H. Grant, Purdue Univ. (United States)
Wei Gao, Colorado State Univ. (United States)
James R Slusser, Colorado State Univ. (United States)
Corinne Ehrlich, Institute of Ecosystem Studies (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4896:
Ultraviolet Ground- and Space-based Measurements, Models, and Effects II
Wei Gao; Jay R. Herman; Guangyu Shi; Kazuo Shibasaki; James R. Slusser, Editor(s)

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