The total carbon column observing network



Publication Details

Wunch, D., Toon, G. C., Blavier, J. L., Washenfelder, R. A., Notholt, J., Connor, B. J., Griffith, D. W. T., Sherlock, V. & Wennberg, P. O. (2011). The total carbon column observing network. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 369 (1943), 2087-2112.


A global network of ground-based Fourier transform spectrometers has been foundedto remotely measure column abundances of CO2, CO, CH4, N2O and other moleculesthat absorb in the near-infrared. These measurements are directly comparable withthe near-infrared total column measurements from space-based instruments. Withstringent requirements on the instrumentation, acquisition procedures, data processingand calibration, the Total Carbon Column Observing Network (TCCON) achieves anaccuracy and precision in total column measurements that is unprecedented for remotesensingobservations (better than 0.25% for CO2). This has enabled carbon-cycle scienceinvestigations using the TCCON dataset, and allows the TCCON to provide a linkbetween satellite measurements and the extensive ground-based in situ network.

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