Articles | Volume 26, issue 7
28 Jul 2008
 | 28 Jul 2008

Analysis of relationships between ultraviolet radiation (295–385 nm) and aerosols as well as shortwave radiation in North China Plain

X. Xia, Z. Li, P. Wang, M. Cribb, H. Chen, and Y. Zhao

Abstract. The fraction of ultraviolet (UV) radiation to broadband shortwave (SW) radiation (FUV=UV/SW) and the influences of aerosol, precipitable water vapor content (PWV) and snow on FUV were examined using two year's worth of ground-based measurements of relevant variables in northern China. The annual mean FUV was 3.85%. Larger monthly values occurred in summer and minimum appeared in winter. Under cloudless condition, FUV decreased linearly with τ500 nm and the resulting regression indicated a reduction of about 26% in daily FUV per unit τ500 nm, implying that aerosol is an efficient agent in lowering the ground-level UV radiation, especially when the sun is high. Given that the annual mean τ500 nm is 0.82, aerosol induced reduction in surface UV radiation was from 24% to 74% when the solar zenith angle (θ) changed from 20° to 80°. One cm of PWV led to an increase of about 17% in daily FUV. One case study of snow influence on surface irradiance showed that UV and SW radiation increased simultaneously when the ground was covered with snow, but SW radiation increased much less than UV radiation. Accordingly, FUV increased by 20% for this case. Models were developed to describe the dependence of instantaneous UV radiation on aerosol optical depth, the cosine of the solar zenith angle (μ), and clearness index (Kt) under both clear and all-weather conditions.