Simone Kotthaus

Simone Kotthaus
École Polytechnique · Institute Pierre Simon Laplace (IPSL)

PhD

About

82
Publications
30,815
Reads
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1,855
Citations
Introduction
The human impact on the environment is especially pronounced in urban settings where surface structure and composition are altered significantly and direct emissions of pollutants, greenhouse gases, and heat alter climate and air quality from the micro- to the global scale. My research focuses on surface-atmosphere interactions and atmospheric boundary layer processes, particularly in cities. Using a combination of measurement and modelling approaches, my aim is to advance our understanding of the physical processes that have implications for both climate conditions and air quality.
Additional affiliations
August 2013 - present
King's College London
Position
  • PostDoc Position
August 2013 - present
University of Reading
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Education
March 2009 - July 2013
King's College London
Field of study
  • Micrometeorology
October 2001 - November 2008
Department for Geophysics and Meteorology, University of Cologne
Field of study
  • Meteorology

Publications

Publications (82)
Preprint
Full-text available
The atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) height defines the volume of air within which heat, moisture and pollutants released at the Earth’s surface are rapidly diluted. Despite the importance for air quality interpretation, numerical weather prediction, greenhouse gas assessment and renewable energy applications, amongst others, quantitative knowledge...
Article
Sensors that measure the attenuated backscatter coefficient (e.g. automatic lidars and ceilometers, ALC) provide information on aerosols which can impact urban climate and citizen health. To design an observational network of ALC sensors for supporting data assimilation, and improve prediction of urban weather and air quality, a methodology is need...
Article
Full-text available
An improved version of the near-real-time decision tool PARAFOG (PFG2) is presented to retrieve pre-fog alert levels and to discriminate between radiation (RAD) and stratus lowering (STL) fog situations. PFG2 has two distinct modules to monitor the physical processes involved in RAD and STL fog formation and is evaluated at European sites. The modu...
Article
Full-text available
Information on the spatiotemporal characteristics of Beijing's urban–rural near-surface air temperature difference, known as the canopy layer urban heat island (UHI), is important for future urban climate management strategies. This paper investigates the variation of near-surface air temperatures within Beijing at a neighbourhood-scale resolution...
Article
Full-text available
The top-down atmospheric inversion method that couples atmospheric CO2 observations with an atmospheric transport model has been used extensively to quantify CO2 emissions from cities. However, the potential of the method is limited by several sources of misfits between the measured and modeled CO2 that are of different origins than the targeted CO...
Article
Full-text available
Isoprene is the most important biogenic volatile organic compound in the atmosphere. Its calculated impact on ozone (O3) is critically dependent on the model isoprene oxidation chemical scheme, in particular the way the isoprene-derived organic nitrates (IN) are treated. By combining gas chromatography with mass spectrometry, we have developed a sy...
Preprint
Full-text available
An improved version of the near-real time decision tool PARAFOG (PFG2) is presented to retrieve pre-fog alert levels and to discriminate between radiation (RAD) and stratus lowering (STL) fog situations. PFG2 has two distinct modules to monitor the physical processes involved in RAD and STL fog formation and is evaluated at European sites. The modu...
Article
Full-text available
Beijing has been suffering from frequent severe air pollution events, with concentrations affected significantly by the mixed-layer height. Major efforts have been made to study the physico-chemical properties, compositions, and sources of aerosol particles at ground level. However, little is known about the morphology, elemental composition, and m...
Article
Full-text available
Air pollution, in particular high concentrations of particulate matter smaller than 1 µm in diameter (PM1), continues to be a major health problem, and meteorology is known to substantially influence atmospheric PM concentrations. However, the scientific understanding of the ways in which complex interactions of meteorological factors lead to high-...
Article
Full-text available
Measurements of OH, HO2, complex RO2 (alkene- and aromatic-related RO2) and total RO2 radicals taken during the integrated Study of AIR Pollution PROcesses in Beijing (AIRPRO) campaign in central Beijing in the summer of 2017, alongside observations of OH reactivity, are presented. The concentrations of radicals were elevated, with OH reaching up t...
Article
Full-text available
Measurements of OH, HO2, complex RO2 (alkene- and aromatic-related RO2) and total RO2 radicals taken during the integrated Study of AIR Pollution PROcesses in Beijing (AIRPRO) campaign in central Beijing in the summer of 2017, alongside observations of OH reactivity, are presented. The concentrations of radicals were elevated, with OH reaching up t...
Article
Full-text available
Black carbon (BC) forms an important component of particulate matter globally, due to its impact on climate, the environment and human health. Identifying and quantifying its emission sources are critical for effective policymaking and achieving the desired reduction in air pollution. In this study, we present the first direct measurements of urban...
Article
Full-text available
Ground based thermal cameras are used to observe urban surface temperatures (Ts) with an unprecedented combination of: temporal and spatial resolution (5 min and ~ 0.5 m → 2.5 m), spatial extent (3.9 ha), instrument number (6 static cameras) and surface heterogeneity (mixed high rise and vegetation). Unsupervised classification of images by geometr...
Preprint
Full-text available
Beijing has been suffering from frequent severe air pollution events, with concentrations affected significantly by the mixed layer height. Major efforts have been made to study the physico-chemical properties, composition, and sources of aerosol particles at ground level. However, little is known on morphology, elemental composition, and mixing st...
Preprint
Full-text available
Information on the spatiotemporal characteristics of Beijing's urban-rural near-surface air temperature difference, known as the canopy layer urban heat island (UHI), is important for future urban climate management strategies. This paper investigates the variation of near-surface air temperatures within Beijing at a neighbourhood-scale resolution...
Article
Full-text available
A detailed understanding of atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) processes is key to improve forecasting of pollution dispersion and cloud dynamics in the context of future climate scenarios. International networks of automatic lidars and ceilometers (ALC) are gathering valuable data that allow for the height of the ABL and its sublayers to be derived...
Article
Full-text available
Two urban schemes within the Joint UK Land Environment Simulator (JULES) are evaluated offline against multi-year flux observations in the densely built-up city centre of London and in suburban Swindon (UK): (i) the 1-tile slab model, used in climate simulations; (ii) the 2-tile canopy model MORUSES (Met Office–Reading Urban Surface Exchange Scheme...
Preprint
Full-text available
Measurements of OH, HO2, RO2-complex (alkene and aromatic-related RO2) and total RO2 radicals taken during the AIRPRO campaign in central Beijing in the summer of 2017, alongside observations of OH reactivity are presented. The concentrations of radicals were elevated with OH reaching up to 2.8 × 107 molecule cm−3, HO2 peaked at 1 × 109 molecule cm...
Article
Full-text available
Air quality in cities is influenced not only by the emissions and chemical transformations but also by the physical state of the atmosphere which varies both temporally and spatially. Increasingly, tall buildings (TB) are common features of the urban landscape, yet their impact is not well understood on urban air flow and dispersion, and their effe...
Preprint
Full-text available
Air pollution, in particular high concentrations of particulate matter smaller than 1 µm in diameter (PM1), continues to be a major health problem, and meteorology is known to substantially contribute to atmospheric PM concentrations. However, the scientific understanding of the complex mechanisms leading to high pollution episodes is inconclusive,...
Article
Full-text available
Direct measurements of NOx, CO and aromatic volatile organic compound (VOC) (benzene, toluene, C2-benzenes and C3-benzenes) flux were made for a central area of Beijing using the eddy-covariance technique. Measurements were made during two intensive field campaigns in central Beijing as part of the Air Pollution and Human Health (APHH) project, the...
Preprint
Full-text available
Black carbon (BC) forms an important component of particulate matter globally, due to its impact on climate, the environment, and human health. Identifying and quantifying its emission sources is critical for effective policymaking and achieving the desired reduction in air pollution. In this study, we present the first direct measurements of urban...
Article
Full-text available
The atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) is the layer closest to the Earth’s surface within which most human activities take place. The vertical profile of atmospheric thermodynamic parameters in the ABL impact weather, air quality and climate. However, surface sensor networks and satellite observations do not provide sufficient information on the high...
Article
Full-text available
We examine the street-scale variation of NOx, NO2, O3 and PM2.5 concentrations in Beijing during the Atmospheric Pollution and Human Health in a Chinese Megacity (APHH-China) winter measurement campaign in November–December 2016. Simulations are performed using the urban air pollution dispersion and chemistry model ADMS-Urban and an explicit networ...
Article
Methods to retrieve urban surface temperature (Ts) from remote sensing observations with sub-building scale resolution are developed using the Discrete Anisotropic Radiative Transfer (DART, Gastellu-Etchegorry et al., 2012) model. Corrections account for the emission and absorption of radiation by air between the surface and instrument (atmospheric...
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. Direct measurements of NO<sub> x </sub>, CO and aromatic VOC (benzene, toluene, C<sub>2</sub>-benzenes and C<sub>3</sub>-benzenes) flux were made for a central area of Beijing using the eddy covariance technique. Measurements were made during two intensive field campaigns in central Beijing as part of the Air Pollution and Human Health (A...
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. Isoprene is the most important biogenic volatile organic compound in the atmosphere. Its calculated impact on ozone (O<sub>3</sub>) is critically dependent on the model isoprene oxidation chemical scheme, in particular the way the isoprene-derived nitrates (IN) are treated. By combining gas chromatography with mass spectrometry, we have d...
Article
Full-text available
Wood burning is widely used for domestic heating and has been identified as a ubiquitous pollution source in urban areas, especially during cold months. The present study is based on a three and a half winter months field campaign in the Paris region measuring Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) by Proton Transfer Reaction Mass Spectrometry (PTR-MS)...
Article
Numerical weather prediction (NWP) models often parameterise aerosols to reduce computational needs, while aiming to accurately capture their impact adequately. Increasingly, aerosols are monitored in-situ directly and/or indirectly (e.g. by automatic lidars and ceilometers, ALC). ALC measure the aerosol optical characteristic of attenuated backsca...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Air pollution and in particular high concentrations of particulate matter (PM) are known to be harmful to human health. However, the quantification of factors leading to high levels of PM remains challenging, as both anthropogenic and meteorological factors contribute to high pollution events. Here, a novel approach using a machine learning algorit...
Preprint
Full-text available
We examine the street-scale variation of NOx, NO2, O3 and PM2.5 concentrations in Beijing during the Atmospheric Pollution and Human Health in a Chinese Megacity (APHH-China) winter measurement campaign in November–December 2016. Simulations are performed using the urban air pollution dispersion and chemistry model ADMS-Urban, and an explicit netwo...
Article
Full-text available
The Atmospheric Pollution and Human Health in a Chinese Megacity (APHH-Beijing) programme is an international collaborative project focusing on understanding the sources, processes and health effects of air pollution in the Beijing megacity. APHH-Beijing brings together leading China and UK research groups, state-of-the-art infrastructure and air q...
Article
Full-text available
Urban areas are a hotspot for the interactions between the built environment, its inhabitants, and weather. Unlike the impact of temperatures through the well-known urban heat island effect, urban effects on cloud formation remain unknown. In this study we show observational evidence of a systematic enhancement of cloud cover in the afternoon and e...
Article
Full-text available
Black carbon (BC) is known to have major impacts on both human health and climate. The populated megacity represents the most complex anthropogenic BC emissions where the sources and related impacts are very uncertain. This study provides source attribution and characterization of BC in the Beijing urban environment during the joint UK–China APHH (...
Article
Full-text available
Urban canopy models are essential tools in forecasting weather and air quality in cities. However, they require many surface parameters, which are uncertain and can reduce model performance if inappropriately prescribed. Here, we evaluate the model sensitivity of the Single-Layer Urban Canopy Model (SLUCM) in theWeather Research and Forecasting mod...
Article
Full-text available
Particle number size distributions have been measured simultaneously by scanning mobility particle sizers (SMPSs) at five sites in central London for a 1 month campaign in January–February 2017. These measurements were accompanied by condensation particle counters (CPCs) to measure total particle number count at four of the sites and Aethalometers...
Article
Full-text available
Black carbon (BC) is known to have major impacts on both human health and climate. The populated megacity represents the most complex anthropogenic BC emissions where the sources and related impacts are very uncertain. This study provides source attribution and characterization of BC in the Beijing urban environment during the joint UK-China APHH (...
Article
Full-text available
To realize the promise of improved predictions of hazardous weather such as flash floods, wind storms, fog, and poor air quality from high-resolution mesoscale models, the forecast models must be initialized with an accurate representation of the current state of the atmosphere, but the lowest few kilometers are hardly accessible by satellite, espe...
Article
Full-text available
APHH-Beijing (Atmospheric Pollution and Human Health in a Chinese Megacity) is an international collaborative project to examine the emissions, processes and health effects of air pollution in Beijing. The four research themes of APHH-China are: (1) sources and emissions of urban atmospheric pollution; (2) processes affecting urban atmospheric poll...
Article
Full-text available
Particle number size distributions have been measured simultaneously by Scanning Mobility Particle Sizers (SMPS) at five sites in Central London for a one month campaign in January–February 2017. These measurements were accompanied by condensation particle counters (CPC) to measure total particle number count at four of the sites and aethalometers...
Article
Full-text available
Urban geometry and materials combine to create complex spatial, temporal and directional patterns of longwave infrared (LWIR) radiation. Effective anisotropy (or directional variability) of thermal radiance causes remote sensing (RS) derived urban surface temperatures to vary with RS view angles. Here a new and novel method to resolve effective the...
Article
Full-text available
We present an algorithm for detecting sea breezes based on fuzzy logic, using changes in variables commonly measured at meteorological stations. The method is applied to 1 year's worth of UK Met Office data (2012) measured at several stations around London, UK. Results indicate about a dozen potential events over the year, when matched against corr...
Article
In urban areas with high air pollution emissions, the boundary layer volume within which gases and particles are diluted is critical to air quality impacts. With advances in ground-based remote sensing technologies and data processing algorithms, observations of layers forming the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) are becoming increasingly available...
Article
Numerical weather prediction (NWP) of urban aerosols is increasingly sophisticated and accurate. In the absence of large particles (e.g. rain, cloud droplets), information on atmospheric aerosols can be obtained from single wavelength automatic lidars and ceilometers (ALC) that measure profiles of attenuated backscatter (βo). To assess the suitabil...
Article
The use of Automatic Lidars and Ceilometers (ALC) is increasingly extended beyond monitoring cloud base height to the study of atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) dynamics. Therefore, long‐term sensor networks observations require robust algorithms to automatically detect the mixed layer height (ZML). Here, a novel automatic algorithm CABAM (Character...
Article
Long‐term measurements of mixed layer height (ZML) are possible with advances in detecting ZML from Automatic Lidars and Ceilometers (ALC) observations. Six years of ALC measurements in central London are analysed using the CABAM (‘Characterising the Atmospheric Boundary layer based on ALC Measurements’) algorithm which provides ZML and an ABL clas...
Article
Full-text available
Urban areas are expanding globally and, in combination with an increase in heat waves due to a warming climate, they experience pressure concerning i.e. environmental quality, human health and energy consumption. Numerical weather prediction (NWP) models now reach a spatial grid resolution at which cities and even contrasting neighbourhoods are bec...
Article
Full-text available
When the urban heat island (UHI) effect coincides with a heat wave (HW), thermal stress in cities is exacerbated. Understanding the surface energy balance (SEB) responses to HWs is critical for improving predictions of the synergies between UHIs and HWs. This study evaluates observed SEB characteristics in four cities (Beijing, Łódź, London and Swi...
Article
Full-text available
Representative precipitation data sets are very difficult to obtain due to the inherent spatial and temporal variability of rainfall. Gridded rainfall products exist at various scales, but temporal resolution is coarse (daily or, at best, a few hours). This study demonstrates the impact of low temporal resolution precipitation forcing data (PFD) on...