Servicio de Información Comunitario sobre Investigación y Desarrollo - CORDIS

Improved radiative forcing efficiencies of fluorocarbon compounds

CRYOSTAT will provide measurements of many trace species and will quantify their radiative forcing. In addition, the Kyoto Protocol of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and similar policy instruments and industry, require quantification of the global warming potential for many gases produced as a result of human activity.

For both these reasons it is important to have accurate values of the radiative efficiencies (i.e. Watts per square metre per ppbv) for the trace species. We have concentrated on a number of species for which there are significant discrepancies in the literature. For HFC134a, HFC23, HFC227ea and HFC32, we performed an inter-comparison of model results with researchers in Norway and reached a consensus forcing, which differed significantly from some previously published results. We were then involved in a wider inter-comparison of the forcing of HFC-134a, carried out for an Special Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. For CF4, we worked with two separate groups performing laboratory measurements of the absorption cross-section, after we recognised an unusually wide spread in the values obtained in previous measurements. The new measurements agreed within their error bars and this led to a proposed radiative efficiency 25% higher than listed in IPCC Scientific Assessments. All the above results have been published in the peer-reviewed literature.

More recently we have performed calculations of the radiative efficiencies of several heavier per fluorocarbons, including c-C4F8, for which time trends in concentration have been derived by CRYOSTAT for the first time.

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