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Utah Summer Ozone Study (USOS)

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  • Principal Investigator: Caroline Womack (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)
  • Study Period: July 15 – August 18, 2024
  • Funding amount: $498,191
  • DAQ Contact: Rachel Edie (redie@utah.gov)
Graphic with a drone and a van set against the city skyline, everything a big dingy colored to denote bad air quality. The text says: Utah Summer Ozone Study USOS 2024, Science Elevated

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is leading a large-scale campaign that will increase our understanding of ozone chemistry and emissions sources. During the Utah Summer Ozone Study (USOS), NOAA will be deploying two mobile labs and an aircraft that contains an exhaustive suite of instrumentation to measure the meteorology and ozone precursors that drive harmful summertime pollution in the Salt Lake Valley. During this study, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) will also be deploying ozone LiDAR instruments that continuously scan vertical profiles of ozone at select locations.

Data collected during USOS will complement Utah DAQ’s existing air monitoring efforts to paint a complete picture of ozone production. This study will greatly inform Utah DAQ’s policy and help improve ozone modeling efforts.

USOS will focus on several factors that are known to contribute to high ozone. Some of these factors include: NOx/VOC emissions, meteorology, wildfire smoke, canyon flows, Great Salt Lake influences, industrial, and biogenic emissions. 

Multiple universities will also be using the opportunity USOS provides to conduct parallel non-DAQ funded studies, Two notable studies include the Salt Lake City Summer Ozone Study (SLC-SOS) and the Methane Emissions from Energy Production to Consumption (MEEPC).

The SLC-SOS mobile measurement campaign will focus on ozone formation chemistry in Salt Lake City. SLC-SOS participants include Colorado State University, University of Montana, NASA, and the University of Utah. Meanwhile, the MEEPC campaign focuses on the quantification of methane sources in Salt Lake City. MEEPC participants include the University of Utah and University of Wyoming. 

Additional details about USOS can be found on NOAA’s website.

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