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Trace gas retrieval software

The experience of BIRA-IASB in the development and improvement of algorithms for the retrieval of trace gas concentrations goes back to the early 1990s, with atmospheric research activities using ground-based UV-Visible spectrometers aiming at the long-term monitoring of minor components involved in the catalytic destruction of the ozone layer or in anthropogenic pollution.

The development of various ground-based and satellite-based instruments has made it necessary to develop general software for trace gas retrieval. Below follows a short overview of the software packages that are also available for others to use.



QDOAS is a cross-platform application which performs DOAS retrievals of trace gases from spectral measurements (satellite, ground-based, mobile or aircraft-based instruments). The software is available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS operating systems.

The software evolves along with the measurement techniques and DOAS research, and has been extensively validated in different campaigns and algorithm comparisons. The friendly user interface, flexibility and the robustness of the algorithms largely contribute to QDOAS' success in the world.

Latest release : 2.111, 5 April 2016

More details about QDOAS



In collaboration with Rob Spurr of RT Solutions Inc. a software package currently called GODFIT is under development. This package performs trace gas retrieval using a direct fitting approach: radiative transfer calculations are used to find the total concentration of a trace gas by way of optimal estimation. In addition this package can perform a traditional DOAS retrieval, followed by a radiative transfer calculations to determine the total concentration. The GDOAS and SDOAS packages are special split-off applications of GODFIT.



Some specific tools which could be of use to others are provided via a separate page.


Last update on 11 Apr 2016