Methodology and calibration for continuous measurements of biogeochemical trace gas and O2 concentrations from a 300-m tall tower in central Siberia

EA Kozlova, AC Manning

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We present an integrated system for measuring atmospheric concentrations of CO2, O2, CH4, CO, and N2O in central Siberia. Our project aims to demonstrate the feasibility of establishing long-term, continuous, high precision atmospheric measurements to elucidate greenhouse gas processes from a very remote, mid-continental boreal environment. Air is sampled from five heights on a custom-built 300-m tower. Common features to all species' measurements include air intakes, an air drying system, flushing procedures, and data processing methods. Calibration standards are shared among all five measured species by extending and optimising a proven methodology for long-term O2 calibration. Our system achieves the precision and accuracy requirements specified by the European Union's "CarboEurope" and "ICOS" (Integrated Carbon Observing System) programmes in the case of CO2, O2, and CH4, while CO and N2O require some further improvements. It was found that it is not possible to achieve these high precision measurements without skilled technical assistance on-site, primarily because of 2–3 month delays in access to data and diagnostic information. We present results on the stability of reference standards in high pressure cylinders. It was also found that some previous methods do not mitigate fractionation of O2 in a sample airstream to a satisfactory level.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-220
Number of pages16
JournalAtmospheric Measurement Techniques
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 26 May 2009

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