HCHO from GOME measurements
Formaldehyde (HCHO) indicates and supports photochemical activity in the atmosphere. Large amounts are expected to found in
industrial areas and during biomass burning. HCHO is a major intermediate in the degradation of methane (and many other
hydrocarbons). In the absence of heterogenous losses, essentially every methane molecule is converted to HCHO. Therefore it is
found throughout the troposphere. It is destroyed via photolysis and reaction with OH. In continental boundary layers, non-methane
hydrocarbons (NMHCs) emitted by biogenic and anthropogenic sources dominate over methane also as a source of HCHO.
GOME is the first instrument, that allows observations of formaldehyde on a global scale giving the opportunity to improve our knowledge about emission fluxes of methane and NMHCs.
If you are interested in more information or GOME HCHO data, please contact Folkard Wittrock.
Monthly averaged tropospheric HCHO columns for the POET project can be downloaded here.