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Atmospheric Applications of Laboratory Spectroscopy

An overview of the laboratory spectroscopy at the University of Toronto is presented, starting first with a review of the quantum mechanics resulting in spectral lines. We use two different gas cells to make measurements; the first is known as the short cell (optical pathlength of 25 cm) and is used to make cross-section measurements of strongly absorbing species such as perfluorotributylamine (PFBAm), hydrofluoroethers (HFE), and Hydrofluorocarbons (HFC). These cross-sections can then be used to calculate the global warming potential (GWP) of a given species.

Currently in development is a multipass White cell, which is expected to have a pathlength of 100 m. The White cell will be used to make measurements of weak lines in methane, carbon dioxide, and water vapour that have been known to interfere with the retrievals of several trace gases. Furthermore, carbon dioxide broadening coefficients will be determined for trace gases retrievals of other planets, such as Mars and Venus.
The lab makes use of a Bomem DA8.002 spectrometer. The DA8 has a spectral range of 500-8500 cm-1 and an unapodized spectral resolution of 0.0004 cm-1