Continuous CO2/CH4/CO measurements (2012–2014) at Beromünster tall tower station in Switzerland

Satar, Ece; Berhanu, Tesfaye A.; Brunner, Dominik; Henne, Stephan; Leuenberger, Markus (2016). Continuous CO2/CH4/CO measurements (2012–2014) at Beromünster tall tower station in Switzerland. Biogeosciences, 13(9), pp. 2623-2635. European Geosciences Union 10.5194/bg-13-2623-2016

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The understanding of the continental carbon budget is essential to predict future climate change. In order to quantify CO₂ and CH₄ fluxes at the regional scale, a measurement system was installed at the former radio tower in
Beromünster as part of the Swiss greenhouse gas monitoring network (CarboCount CH). We have been measuring the mixing ratios of CO₂, CH₄
and CO on this tower with sample inlets at 12.5, 44.6, 71.5, 131.6 and 212.5 m above ground level using a cavity ring down spectroscopy (CRDS) analyzer. The first 2-year (December 2012–December 2014) continuous atmospheric record was analyzed for seasonal and diurnal variations and interspecies correlations. In addition, storage fluxes were calculated from the hourly profiles along the tower. The atmospheric growth rates from 2013 to 2014 determined from this 2-year data set were 1.78 ppm yr⁻¹, 9.66 ppb yr⁻¹ and and -1.27 ppb yr⁻¹ for CO₂, CH₄ and CO, respectively. After detrending, clear seasonal cycles were detected for CO₂ and CO, whereas CH₄ showed a stable baseline suggesting a net balance between sources and sinks over the course of the year. CO and CO₂ were strongly correlated (r² > 0.75) in winter (DJF), but almost uncorrelated in summer. In winter, anthropogenic emissions
dominate the biospheric CO₂ fluxes and the variations in mixing ratios are large due to reduced vertical mixing. The diurnal variations of all species showed distinct cycles in spring and summer, with the lowest sampling level showing the most pronounced diurnal amplitudes. The storage flux estimates exhibited reasonable diurnal shapes for CO₂, but underestimated the strength of the surface sinks during daytime. This seems plausible, keeping in mind that we were only able to calculate the storage fluxes along the profile of the tower but not the flux into or out of this profile, since no Eddy covariance flux measurements were taken at the top of the tower.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


10 Strategic Research Centers > Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research (OCCR)
08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute > Climate and Environmental Physics

Graduate School:

Graduate School of Climate Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Satar, Ece, Berhanu, Tesfaye, Leuenberger, Markus


500 Science > 530 Physics
500 Science > 550 Earth sciences & geology




European Geosciences Union




Doris Rätz

Date Deposited:

06 Jul 2016 10:03

Last Modified:

02 Mar 2023 23:27

Publisher DOI:





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