Surface observation data taken in Mongolia, China, Korea and Japan during the Asian dust event of March 29 to April 2, 2007 were compared with a regional dust transport model assimilated with the lidar network data. The assimilated model reproduced the reported dust event in Mongolia and the observed PM10 concentrations in Korea and Japan very well. The mass/extinction conversion factor (MEF) obtained from the lidar dust extinction coefficient and PM10 concentration was also compared with the assimilated model for Seoul and Tsukuba where both the lidar and PM10 data were available. The MEFs for PM10 and PM2.5 (the ratio of dust-only PM10 or PM2.5 to the dust extinction coefficient) were calculated with the assimilated model. The modeled MEF for PM10 reproduced the observed MEF reasonably and exhibited spatial and temporal variations reflecting the variations in the dust particle size distribution. The modeled MEF for PM2.5 had much less variation. This indicates that the dust extinction coefficient has a higher correlation with dust PM2.5 and should be a useful index for studying the effect of dust on human health.
2011 by the Meteorological Society of Japan