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Roberts, GC, Nenes A, Seinfeld JH, Andreae MO.  2003.  Impact of biomass burning on cloud properties in the Amazon Basin. Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres. 108   10.1029/2001jd000985   AbstractWebsite

[1] We used a one-dimensional (1-D) cloud parcel model to assess the impact of biomass-burning aerosol on cloud properties in the Amazon Basin and to identify the physical and chemical properties of the aerosol that influence droplet growth. Cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) measurements were performed between 0.15% and 1.5% supersaturation at ground-based sites in the states of Amazonas and Rondonia, Brazil during several field campaigns in 1998 and 1999 as part of the Large-Scale Biosphere - Atmosphere (LBA) Experiment in Amazonia. CCN concentrations measured during the wet season were low and resembled concentrations more typical of marine conditions than most continental sites. During the dry season, smoke aerosol from biomass burning dramatically increased CCN concentrations. The modification of cloud properties, such as cloud droplet effective radius and maximum supersaturation, is most sensitive at low CCN concentrations. Hence, we could expect larger interannual variation of cloud properties during the wet season that the dry season. We found that differences between CCN spectra from forested and deforested regions during the wet season are modest and result in modifications of cloud properties that are small compared to those between wet and dry seasons. Our study suggests that the differences in surface albedo, rather than cloud albedo, between forested and deforested regions may dominate the impact of deforestation on the hydrological cycle and convective activity during the wet season. During the dry season, on the other hand, cloud droplet concentrations may increase by up to 7 times, which leads to a model-predicted decrease in cloud effective radius by a factor of 2. This could imply a maximum indirect radiative forcing due to aerosol as high as ca. -27 W m(-2) for a nonabsorbing cloud. Light-absorbing substances in smoke darken the Amazonian clouds and reduce the net radiative forcing, and a comparison of the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) analysis and our modeling studies suggests that absorption of sunlight due to smoke aerosol may compensate for about half of the maximum aerosol effect. Sensitivity tests show that complete characterization of the aerosol is necessary when kinetic growth limitations become important. Subtle differences in the chemical and physical makeup are shown to be particularly influential in the activation and growth behavior of the aerosol. Knowledge of the CCN spectrum alone is not sufficient to fully capture the climatic influence of biomass burning.

Kuhn, U, Ganzeveld L, Thielmann A, Dindorf T, Schebeske G, Welling M, Sciare J, Roberts G, Meixner FX, Kesselmeier J, Lelieveld J, Kolle O, Ciccioli P, Lloyd J, Trentmann J, Artaxo P, Andreae MO.  2010.  Impact of Manaus City on the Amazon Green Ocean atmosphere: ozone production, precursor sensitivity and aerosol load. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. 10:9251-9282.   10.5194/acp-10-9251-2010   AbstractWebsite

As a contribution to the Large-Scale Biosphere-Atmosphere Experiment in Amazonia - Cooperative LBA Airborne Regional Experiment (LBA-CLAIRE-2001) field campaign in the heart of the Amazon Basin, we analyzed the temporal and spatial dynamics of the urban plume of Manaus City during the wet-to-dry season transition period in July 2001. During the flights, we performed vertical stacks of crosswind transects in the urban outflow downwind of Manaus City, measuring a comprehensive set of trace constituents including O-3, NO, NO2, CO, VOC, CO2, and H2O. Aerosol loads were characterized by concentrations of total aerosol number (CN) and cloud condensation nuclei (CCN), and by light scattering properties. Measurements over pristine rainforest areas during the campaign showed low levels of pollution from biomass burning or industrial emissions, representative of wet season background conditions. The urban plume of Manaus City was found to be joined by plumes from power plants south of the city, all showing evidence of very strong photochemical ozone formation. One episode is discussed in detail, where a threefold increase in ozone mixing ratios within the atmospheric boundary layer occurred within a 100 km travel distance downwind of Manaus. Observation-based estimates of the ozone production rates in the plume reached 15 ppb h(-1). Within the plume core, aerosol concentrations were strongly enhanced, with Delta CN/Delta CO ratios about one order of magnitude higher than observed in Amazon biomass burning plumes. Delta CN/Delta CO ratios tended to decrease with increasing transport time, indicative of a significant reduction in particle number by coagulation, and without substantial new particle nucleation occurring within the time/space observed. While in the background atmosphere a large fraction of the total particle number served as CCN (about 60-80% at 0.6% supersaturation), the CCN/CN ratios within the plume indicated that only a small fraction (16 +/- 12 %) of the plume particles were CCN. The fresh plume aerosols showed relatively weak light scattering efficiency. The CO-normalized CCN concentrations and light scattering coefficients increased with plume age in most cases, suggesting particle growth by condensation of soluble organic or inorganic species. We used a Single Column Chemistry and Transport Model (SCM) to infer the urban pollution emission fluxes of Manaus City, implying observed mixing ratios of CO, NOx and VOC. The model can reproduce the temporal/spatial distribution of ozone enhancements in the Manaus plume, both with and without accounting for the distinct (high NOx) contribution by the power plants; this way examining the sensitivity of ozone production to changes in the emission rates of NOx. The VOC reactivity in the Manaus region was dominated by a high burden of biogenic isoprene from the background rainforest atmosphere, and therefore NOx control is assumed to be the most effective ozone abatement strategy. Both observations and models show that the agglomeration of NOx emission sources, like power plants, in a well-arranged area can decrease the ozone production efficiency in the near field of the urban populated cores. But on the other hand remote areas downwind of the city then bear the brunt, being exposed to increased ozone production and N-deposition. The simulated maximum stomatal ozone uptake fluxes were 4 nmol m(-2) s(-1) close to Manaus, and decreased only to about 2 nmol m(-2) s(-1) within a travel distance >1500 km downwind from Manaus, clearly exceeding the critical threshold level for broadleaf trees. Likewise, the simulated N deposition close to Manaus was similar to 70 kg N ha(-1) a(-1) decreasing only to about 30 kg N ha(-1) a(-1) after three days of simulation.

Collins, DB, Ault AP, Moffet RC, Ruppel MJ, Cuadra-Rodriguez LA, Guasco TL, Corrigan CE, Pedler BE, Azam F, Aluwihare LI, Bertram TH, Roberts GC, Grassian VH, Prather KA.  2013.  Impact of marine biogeochemistry on the chemical mixing state and cloud forming ability of nascent sea spray aerosol. Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres. 118:8553-8565.   10.1002/jgrd.50598   AbstractWebsite

The composition and properties of sea spray aerosol, a major component of the atmosphere, are often controlled by marine biological activity; however, the scope of impacts that ocean chemistry has on the ability for sea spray aerosol to act as cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) is not well understood. In this study, we utilize a mesocosm experiment to investigate the impact of marine biogeochemical processes on the composition and mixing state of sea spray aerosol particles with diameters<0.2 mu m produced by controlled breaking waves in a unique ocean-atmosphere facility. An increase in relative abundance of a distinct, insoluble organic particle type was observed after concentrations of heterotrophic bacteria increased in the seawater, leading to an 86 +/- 5% reduction in the hygroscopicity parameter () at 0.2% supersaturation. Aerosol size distributions showed very little change and the submicron organic mass fraction increased by less than 15% throughout the experiment; as such, neither of these typical metrics can explain the observed reduction in hygroscopicity. Predictions of the hygroscopicity parameter that make the common assumption that all particles have the same bulk organic volume fractions lead to overpredictions of CCN concentrations by 25% in these experiments. Importantly, key changes in sea spray aerosol mixing state that ultimately influenced CCN activity were driven by bacteria-mediated alterations to the organic composition of seawater.

Sullivan, RC, Moore MJK, Petters MD, Kreidenweis SM, Qafoku O, Laskin A, Roberts GC, Prather KA.  2010.  Impact of particle generation method on the apparent hygroscopicity of insoluble mineral particles. Aerosol Science and Technology. 44:830-846.   10.1080/02786826.2010.497514   AbstractWebsite

Calcite (CaCO(3)) mineral particles are commonly generated by atomization techniques to study their heterogeneous chemistry, hygroscopicity, and cloud nucleation properties. Here we investigate the significant artifact introduced in generating calcium mineral particles through the atomization of a saturated suspension of the powder in water, by measuring particle hygroscopicity via CCN activation curves. Particles produced from atomization displayed hygroscopicities as large as kappa(app) > 0.1, 100 times more hygroscopic than that obtained for dry-generated calcite, kappa(app) = 0.0011. The hygroscopicity of the wet-generated particles increased as a function of time the calcite powder spent in water, and with decreasing particle size. Wet-generated calcium oxalate was more hygroscopic through wet- (kappa(app) = 0.34) versus dry-generation (kappa(app) = 0.048). Atomized calcium sulfate particles, however, were only slightly more hygroscopic (kappa(app) = 0.0045) than those generated dry (kappa(app) = 0.0016). Single-particle analysis by ATOFMS and SEM/EDX, and bulk analysis of the calcite powders by ICP-MS and IC revealed no significant soluble contaminants. The atomized particles were likely composed of components that dissolved from the powder and then re-precipitated, and appeared to contain little of the original mineral powder. The increased hygroscopicity of atomized calcite may have been caused by aqueous carbonate chemistry producing Ca(OH)(2), Ca(HCO(3))(2), and metastable hydrates with increased solubility. Surface water adsorption may have also played a role, in addition to uncharacterized soluble components produced by wet-generation, and the precipitation of amorphous phases including glassy states. This study suggests that using wet-generation methods to suspend mineral dust samples will not produce particles with the correct physicochemical properties in laboratory studies, a finding which has important implications for past and future laboratory studies focusing on understanding relationships between the hygroscopicity and chemistry of mineral dust particles.

Baumgardner, D, Avallone L, Bansemer A, Borrmann S, Brown P, Bundke U, Chuang PY, Cziczo D, Field P, Gallagher M, Gayet JF, Heymsfield A, Korolev A, Kramer M, McFarquhar G, Mertes S, Mohler O, Lance S, Lawson P, Petters MD, Pratt K, Roberts G, Rogers D, Stetzer O, Stith J, Strapp W, Twohy C, Wendisch M.  2012.  In situ, airborne instrumentation: addressing and solving measurement problems in ice clouds. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society. 93:E529-E534.   10.1175/bams-d-11-00123.1   AbstractWebsite
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Guyon, P, Graham B, Roberts GC, Mayol-Bracero OL, Maenhaut W, Artaxo P, Andreae MO.  2003.  In-canopy gradients, composition, sources, and optical properties of aerosol over the Amazon forest. Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres. 108   10.1029/2003jd003465   AbstractWebsite

[1] As part of the Large-Scale Biosphere-Atmosphere Experiment in Amazonia-European Studies on Trace Gases and Atmospheric Chemistry (LBA-EUSTACH), size-fractionated aerosol samples were collected at a primary rain forest in the Brazilian Amazon during two field campaigns in April - May and September - October 1999. These two periods encompassed parts of the wet and dry seasons, respectively. Daytime-nighttime-segregated sampling was carried out at three different heights ( above, within, and below canopy level) on a 54-m meteorological tower at the forest site in order to better characterize the aerosol sources. The samples were analyzed for up to 19 trace elements by particle-induced X-ray emission analysis and for carbonaceous components by thermal-optical analysis. Equivalent black carbon (BCe) and gravimetric analyses were also performed. The average mass concentrations for particles < 2 μm diameter were 2.2 and 33.5 μg m(-3) for the wet and the dry seasons, respectively. The elements related to biomass burning and soil dust generally exhibited highest concentrations above the canopy and during daytime, while forest-derived aerosol was more concentrated underneath the canopy and during nighttime. These variations can be largely attributed to daytime convective mixing and the formation of a shallow nocturnal boundary layer, along with the possibility of enhanced nighttime release of biogenic aerosol particles. Mass scattering (α(s)) and mass absorption efficiency (α(a)) data indicate that scattering was dominated by fine aerosol, while fine and coarse aerosol both contributed significantly to absorption during both seasons. The data also suggest that components other than elemental carbon were responsible for a substantial fraction of the absorption.

Wilcox, EM, Roberts G, Ramanathan V.  2006.  Influence of aerosols on the shortwave cloud radiative forcing from North Pacific oceanic clouds: Results from the Cloud Indirect Forcing Experiment (CIFEX). Geophysical Research Letters. 33   10.1029/2006gl027150   AbstractWebsite

Aerosols over the Northeastern Pacific Ocean enhance the cloud drop number concentration and reduce the drop size for marine stratocumulus and cumulus clouds. These microphysical effects result in brighter clouds, as evidenced by a combination of aircraft and satellite observations. In-situ measurements from the Cloud Indirect Forcing Experiment (CIFEX) indicate that the mean cloud drop number concentration in low clouds over the polluted marine boundary layer is greater by 53 cm(-3) compared to clean clouds, and the mean cloud drop effective radius is smaller by 4 mm. We link these in-situ measurements of cloud modification by aerosols, for the first time, with collocated satellite broadband radiative flux observations from the Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System to show that these microphysical effects of aerosols enhance the top-of-atmosphere cooling by similar to 9.9 +/- 4.3 W m(-2) for overcast conditions.