The First US Perflurocarbon Experiments: CAPTEX and ANATEX

 

Roland R. Draxler

 

Proceedings, ETEX Symposium on Long-Range Atmospheric Transport, 13-16 May 1997, Vienna, Austria

 

Summary - The need to develop economical methods to test atmospheric transport and dispersion models at distances of 100's to 1000's of kilometers led to the development of a unique methodology using perfluorocarbon tracers (PFTs).  Previous experiments using tracers of opportunity, such as from weapons testing and fuel reprocessing, or other more common tracers such as sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), resulted in substantial limitations in the experimental design due to high ambient background concentrations or interference from other sources.  The PFTs,  with ambient backgrounds on the order of  parts-in-1015, were released in small amounts, generally in the range of 10 to 100 kg/hr.  Because of their low and stable ambient background concentrations,  PFT air concentrations were detectable at distances of several thousand kilometers from the source.  Some examples will be presented from each of the major long-range PFT experiments coordinated by NOAA.  To facilitate distribution to the research community,  most of the measurements, observations,  and documentation, have been put on our web site.  Data access methods are summarized.

 

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