Performance of open-path GasFinder3 devices for CH 4 concentration measurements close to ambient levels

Häni, Christoph; Bühler, Marcel; Neftel, Albrecht; Ammann, Christof; Kupper, Thomas

Open-path measurements of methane (CHinline-formula4) with the use of GasFinder systems (Boreal Laser Inc, Edmonton Canada) have been frequently used for emission estimation with the inverse dispersion method (IDM), particularly from agricultural sources. It is common to many IDM applications that the concentration enhancement related to CHinline-formula4 sources is small, typically between 0.05 and 0.5 ppm, and accurate measurements of CHinline-formula4 concentrations are needed at concentrations close to ambient levels. The GasFinder3-OP (GF3) device for open-path CHinline-formula4 measurements is the latest version of the commercial GasFinder systems by Boreal Laser Inc. We investigated the uncertainty of six GF3 devices from side-by-side intercomparison measurements and comparisons to a closed-path quantum cascade laser device. The comparisons were made at near-ambient levels of CHinline-formula4 (85 % of measurements below 2.5 ppm) with occasional phases of elevated concentrations (max. 8.3 ppm). Relative biases as high as 8.3 % were found, and a precision for half-hourly data between 2.1 and 10.6 ppm-m (half width of the 95 % confidence interval) was estimated. These results deviate from the respective manufacturer specifications of 2 % and 0.5 ppm-m. Intercalibration of the GF3 devices by linear regression to remove measurement bias was shown to be of limited value due to drifts and step changes in the recorded GF3 concentrations.

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Häni, Christoph / Bühler, Marcel / Neftel, Albrecht / et al: Performance of open-path GasFinder3 devices for CH4 concentration measurements close to ambient levels. 2021. Copernicus Publications.

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