This false-color image shows concentrations of carbon monoxide at an altitude of roughly 18,000 feet (500 millibars) in the atmosphere over eastern China. This image represents a composite of data collected over a three-day period, from January 1-3, 2003, by the Measurements Of Pollution In The Troposphere (MOPITT) instrument aboard NASAs Terra satellite. The colors represent the mixing ratios of carbon monoxide in the air, given in parts per billion by volume. In this scene, values range from as high as 205 ppbv (red pixels) to as low as 50 ppbv (blue pixels). The grey areas show where no data were collected, either due to persistent cloud cover or gaps between viewing swaths. (Light gray shows land masses and dark gray shows the Pacific Ocean.)
During the time these data were collected by MOPITT, other satellite sensors observed heavy, widespread particulate pollution over this region. Along with smoke and particulate emissions, carbon monoxide is a byproduct of burning biomass and fossil fuels.
Image courtesy the NCAR MOPITT Team