← Back to News List

Catching up with Ghassan Taha

Ghassan Taha, a GESTAR II Senior Research Scientist affiliated with Morgan State University, works in the NASA GSFC Atmospheric Chemistry and Dynamics Department. Dr. Taha (614/MSU) is the PI of the Ozone Mapping and Profiler Suite (OMPS) Limb Profiler (LP) aerosol products study, along with his science team, Co-Is Robert Loughman (Hampton Univ.) and Peter Colarco (614/GSFC). In May, they released a new and improved aerosol product, the version 2.1 Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (SNPP) OMPS aerosol extinction profiles product, which was publicly released at GES DISC:
https://snpp-omps.gesdisc.eosdis.nasa.gov/data/SNPP_OMPS_Level2/OMPS_NPP_LP_L2_AER_DAILY.2/ .  This features some improvements in the aerosol extinction coefficient profiles, especially the shorter wavelengths. According to the NOAA NESDIS website, "The OMPS tracks the health of the ozone layer and measures the concentration of ozone and other aerosols in the Earth's atmosphere." To learn more about how the OMPS is being utilized, visit https://www.nesdis.noaa.gov/current-satellite-missions/currently-flying/joint-polar-satellite-system/jpss-mission-and-3.

At the 3rd International Workshop on Stratospheric Sulfur and Role in Climate (SSiRC) at Leeds University, Leeds, UK, Dr. Taha was an invited keynote speaker and presented the talk "Tracking the January 2022 Hunga-Tonga aerosol cloud using space-based observations."  He also co-authored several presentations; for more, visit https://eu.eventscloud.com/ehome/200197691/. Dr. Taha explained that for his team's research on the Hunga-Tonga cloud, "The OMPS LP was one of a few instruments to provide global and vertical distribution of the volcanic cloud daily, and [he] was interviewed a few times to comment on this event. [They] also modified the aerosol product to increase its vertical altitude and managed to follow the volcanic cloud above a 40-km altitude, which is unprecedented for a volcanic eruption. The data also was publicly released at https://avdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/pub/data/satellite/Suomi_NPP/L2/LP-L2-AER-45km/. To summarize [their] efforts regarding the Hunga-Tonga eruption, [they produced data] and provided a scientific analysis." At present, a related paper led by Dr. Taha is currently under review. In February 2022, Dr. Taha contributed to an Earth Observatory Item of the Day related to the Hunga-Tonga Volcano Plume, and can be found here.


Posted: July 21, 2022, 4:22 PM