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In the limb mode, SCIAMACHY measures scattered sun radiances for different viewing angles, corresponding to certain tangent heights. During one limb state, the atmosphere is scanned in approx. 3 km steps from the ground to 100 km altitude.

By DOAS, the trace gas absorptions can be identified and the corresponding Slant column density (SCD) for the respective tangent height can be determined. By inversion of the retrieved SCDs, vertical profiles of the considered trace gases can be obtained. For that purpose various methods exist.

In our group, we apply an optimal estimation method based on (Rodgers, 2000). It utilizes climatology profiles as a priori to constrain the inversion. Weighting functions are calculated by the full spherical radiative transfer model TRACY.

*Rodgers, C.D. (2000): Inverse methods for atmospheric sounding. Theory and practice, World Scientific Publishing Co. Ltd., Singapore.
*Pukite, Janis, Sven Kühl, W. Wilms-Grabe, and Thomas Wagner: SCIAMACHY limb measurements as a new tool for stratospheric ozone studies, Proceedings of Integrative Approaches Towards Sustainability, Jurmala, Latvia, 2005.
*Kühl, S.: Quantifying Stratospheric Chlorine Chemistry by the Satellite Spectrometers GOME and SCIAMACHY, PhD thesis, University of Heidelberg, 2005.