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Volume 10, issue 9
Biogeosciences, 10, 5997–6017, 2013
© Author(s) 2013. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Biogeosciences, 10, 5997–6017, 2013
© Author(s) 2013. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 12 Sep 2013

Research article | 12 Sep 2013

Measurements of nitrogen oxides and ozone fluxes by eddy covariance at a meadow: evidence for an internal leaf resistance to NO2

P. Stella1, M. Kortner1,*, C. Ammann2, T. Foken3,4, F. X. Meixner1, and I. Trebs1 P. Stella et al.
  • 1Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Biogeochemistry Department, 55020 Mainz, Germany
  • 2Agroscope ART, Air Pollution and Climate Group, 8046 Zürich, Switzerland
  • 3University of Bayreuth, Department of Micrometeorology, 95440 Bayreuth, Germany
  • 4Member of Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research (BayCEER), Germany
  • *now at: Müller-BBM GmbH, Branch Office Frankfurt, 63589 Linsengericht, Germany

Abstract. Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) plays an important role in atmospheric pollution, in particular for tropospheric ozone production. However, the removal processes involved in NO2 deposition to terrestrial ecosystems are still the subject of ongoing discussion. This study reports NO2 flux measurements made over a meadow using the eddy covariance method. The measured NO2 deposition fluxes during daytime were about a factor of two lower than a priori calculated fluxes using the Surfatm model without taking into account an internal (also called mesophyllic or sub-stomatal) resistance. Neither an underestimation of the measured NO2 deposition flux due to chemical divergence or an in-canopy NO2 source nor an underestimation of the resistances used to model the NO2 deposition explained the large difference between measured and modelled NO2 fluxes. Thus, only the existence of the internal resistance could account for this large discrepancy between model and measurements. The median internal resistance was estimated to be 300 s m−1 during daytime, but exhibited a large variability (100–800 s m−1). In comparison, the stomatal resistance was only around 100 s m−1 during daytime. Hence, the internal resistance accounted for 50–90% of the total leaf resistance to NO2. This study presents the first clear evidence and quantification of the internal resistance using the eddy covariance method; i.e. plant functioning was not affected by changes of microclimatological (turbulent) conditions that typically occur when using enclosure methods.

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