The Orbiting Carbon Observatory (OCO-2): The first year of carbon dioxide measurements from space

26 February 2016, 3.30 PM - 26 February 2016, 4.30 PM

Dr Michael Gunson of NASA

Peel Lecture Theatre, University Road, University of Bristol, BS8 1SS

NASA’s Orbiting Carbon Observatory successfully launched on July 2, 2014 to join the growing afternoon constellation of Earth observing satellites known as “A-Train”.

Since science operations started in September of 2014, OCO-2 has acquired close to a million soundings each day of which 70,000 to 170,000 are sufficiently free from the effects of clouds to provide a scientifically useful measure of the mean column mixing ratio of carbon dioxide.

This talk will describe some of the challenges to making measurements from space with a target accuracy of 1 ppmv in 400 ppmv CO2 and what these measurements have shown insights into the carbon cycle at global, regional, and local spatial scales.

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