Search Results

Now showing 1 - 10 of 16
  • Item
    Sea salt emission, transport and influence on size-segregated nitrate simulation: A case study in northwestern Europe by WRF-Chem
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) Chen, Ying; Cheng, Yafang; Ma, Nan; Wolke, Ralf; Nordmann, Stephan; Schüttauf, Stephanie; Ran, Liang; Wehner, Birgit; Birmili, Wolfram; van der Gon, Hugo A.C. Denier; Mu, Qing; Barthel, Stefan; Spindler, Gerald; Stieger, Bastian; Müller, Konrad; Zheng, Guang-Jie; Pöschl, Ulrich; Su, Hang; Wiedensohler, Alfred
    Sea salt aerosol (SSA) is one of the major components of primary aerosols and has significant impact on the formation of secondary inorganic particles mass on a global scale. In this study, the fully online coupled WRF-Chem model was utilized to evaluate the SSA emission scheme and its influence on the nitrate simulation in a case study in Europe during 10–20 September 2013. Meteorological conditions near the surface, wind pattern and thermal stratification structure were well reproduced by the model. Nonetheless, the coarse-mode (PM1 − 10) particle mass concentration was substantially overestimated due to the overestimation of SSA and nitrate. Compared to filter measurements at four EMEP stations (coastal stations: Bilthoven, Kollumerwaard and Vredepeel; inland station: Melpitz), the model overestimated SSA concentrations by a factor of 8–20. We found that this overestimation was mainly caused by overestimated SSA emissions over the North Sea during 16–20 September. Over the coastal regions, SSA was injected into the continental free troposphere through an “aloft bridge” (about 500 to 1000 m above the ground), a result of the different thermodynamic properties and planetary boundary layer (PBL) structure between continental and marine regions. The injected SSA was further transported inland and mixed downward to the surface through downdraft and PBL turbulence. This process extended the influence of SSA to a larger downwind region, leading, for example, to an overestimation of SSA at Melpitz, Germany, by a factor of  ∼  20. As a result, the nitrate partitioning fraction (ratio between particulate nitrate and the summation of particulate nitrate and gas-phase nitric acid) increased by about 20 % for the coarse-mode nitrate due to the overestimation of SSA at Melpitz. However, no significant difference in the partitioning fraction for the fine-mode nitrate was found. About 140 % overestimation of the coarse-mode nitrate resulted from the influence of SSA at Melpitz. In contrast, the overestimation of SSA inhibited the nitrate particle formation in the fine mode by about 20 % because of the increased consumption of precursor by coarse-mode nitrate formation.
  • Item
    An optical particle size spectrometer for aircraft-borne measurements in IAGOS-CARIBIC
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) Hermann, Markus; Weigelt, Andreas; Assmann, Denise; Pfeifer, Sascha; Müller, Thomas; Conrath, Thomas; Voigtländer, Jens; Heintzenberg, Jost; Wiedensohler, Alfred; Martinsson, Bengt G.; Deshler, Terry; Brenninkmeijer, Carl A.M.; Zahn, Andreas
    The particle number size distribution is an important parameter to characterize the atmospheric aerosol and its influence on the Earth's climate. Here we describe a new optical particle size spectrometer (OPSS) for measurements of the accumulation mode particle number size distribution in the tropopause region on board a passenger aircraft (IAGOS-CARIBIC observatory: In-service Aircraft for a Global Observing System – Civil Aircraft for Regular Investigation of the Atmosphere Based on an Instrument Container). A modified KS93 particle sensor from RION Co., Ltd., together with a new airflow system and a dedicated data acquisition system, is the key component of the CARIBIC OPSS. The instrument records individual particle pulse signal curves in the particle size range 130–1110 nm diameter (for a particle refractive index of 1.47-i0.006) together with a time stamp and thus allows the post-flight choice of the time resolution and the size distribution bin width. The CARIBIC OPSS has a 50 % particle detection diameter of 152 nm and a maximum asymptotic counting efficiency of 98 %. The instrument's measurement performance shows no pressure dependency and no particle coincidence for free tropospheric conditions. The size response function of the CARIBIC OPSS was obtained by a polystyrene latex calibration in combination with model calculations. Particle number size distributions measured with the new OPSS in the lowermost stratosphere agreed within a factor of 2 in concentration with balloon-borne measurements over western North America. Since June 2010 the CARIBIC OPSS is deployed once per month in the IAGOS-CARIBIC observatory.
  • Item
    CCN production by new particle formation in the free troposphere
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2017) Rose, Clémence; Sellegri, Karine; Moreno, Isabel; Velarde, Fernando; Ramonet, Michel; Weinhold, Kay; Krejc, Radovan; Andrade, Marcos; Wiedensohler, Alfred; Ginot, Patrick; Laj, Paolo
    Global models predict that new particle formation (NPF) is, in some environments, responsible for a substantial fraction of the total atmospheric particle number concentration and subsequently contributes significantly to cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) concentrations. NPF events were frequently observed at the highest atmospheric observatory in the world, on Chacaltaya (5240 m a.s.l.), Bolivia. The present study focuses on the impact of NPF on CCN population. Neutral cluster and Air Ion Spectrometer and mobility particle size spectrometer measurements were simultaneously used to follow the growth of particles from cluster sizes down to ∼ 2 nm up to CCN threshold sizes set to 50, 80 and 100 nm. Using measurements performed between 1 January and 31 December 2012, we found that 61 % of the 94 analysed events showed a clear particle growth and significant enhancement of the CCN-relevant particle number concentration. We evaluated the contribution of NPF, relative to the transport and growth of pre-existing particles, to CCN size. The averaged production of 50 nm particles during those events was 5072, and 1481 cm−3 for 100 nm particles, with a larger contribution of NPF compared to transport, especially during the wet season. The data set was further segregated into boundary layer (BL) and free troposphere (FT) conditions at the site. The NPF frequency of occurrence was higher in the BL (48 %) compared to the FT (39 %). Particle condensational growth was more frequently observed for events initiated in the FT, but on average faster for those initiated in the BL, when the amount of condensable species was most probably larger. As a result, the potential to form new CCN was higher for events initiated in the BL (67 % against 53 % in the FT). In contrast, higher CCN number concentration increases were found when the NPF process initially occurred in the FT, under less polluted conditions. This work highlights the competition between particle growth and the removal of freshly nucleated particles by coagulation processes. The results support model predictions which suggest that NPF is an effective source of CCN in some environments, and thus may influence regional climate through cloud-related radiative processes.
  • Item
    Studying the vertical aerosol extinction coefficient by comparing in situ airborne data and elastic backscatter lidar
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) Rosati, Bernadette; Herrmann, Erik; Bucci, Silvia; Fierli, Federico; Cairo, Francesco; Gysel, Martin; Tillmann, Ralf; Größ, Johannes; Gobbi, Gian Paolo; Liberto, Luca Di; Di Donfrancesco, Guido; Wiedensohler, Alfred; Weingartner, Ernest; Virtanen, Annele; Mentel, Thomas F.; Baltensperger, Urs
    Vertical profiles of aerosol particle optical properties were explored in a case study near the San Pietro Capofiume (SPC) ground station during the PEGASOS Po Valley campaign in the summer of 2012. A Zeppelin NT airship was employed to investigate the effect of the dynamics of the planetary boundary layer at altitudes between ∼  50 and 800 m above ground. Determined properties included the aerosol particle size distribution, the hygroscopic growth factor, the effective index of refraction and the light absorption coefficient. The first three parameters were used to retrieve the light scattering coefficient. Simultaneously, direct measurements of both the scattering and absorption coefficient were carried out at the SPC ground station. Additionally, a single wavelength polarization diversity elastic lidar system provided estimates of aerosol extinction coefficients using the Klett method to accomplish the inversion of the signal, for a vertically resolved comparison between in situ and remote-sensing results. Note, however, that the comparison was for the most part done in the altitude range where the overlap function is incomplete and accordingly uncertainties are larger. First, the airborne results at low altitudes were validated with the ground measurements. Agreement within approximately ±25 and ±20 % was found for the dry scattering and absorption coefficient, respectively. The single scattering albedo, ranged between 0.83 and 0.95, indicating the importance of the absorbing particles in the Po Valley region. A clear layering of the atmosphere was observed during the beginning of the flight (until ∼  10:00 LT – local time) before the mixing layer (ML) was fully developed. Highest extinction coefficients were found at low altitudes, in the new ML, while values in the residual layer, which could be probed at the beginning of the flight at elevated altitudes, were lower. At the end of the flight (after ∼  12:00 LT) the ML was fully developed, resulting in constant extinction coefficients at all altitudes measured on the Zeppelin NT. Lidar estimates captured these dynamic features well and good agreement was found for the extinction coefficients compared to the in situ results, using fixed lidar ratios (LR) between 30 and 70 sr for the altitudes probed with the Zeppelin. These LR are consistent with values for continental aerosol particles that can be expected in this region.
  • Item
    Long-term observations of tropospheric particle number size distributions and equivalent black carbon mass concentrations in the German Ultrafine Aerosol Network (GUAN)
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) Birmili, Wolfram; Weinhold, Kay; Rasch, Fabian; Sonntag, André; Sun, Jia; Merkel, Maik; Wiedensohler, Alfred; Bastian, Susanne; Schladitz, Alexander; Löschau, Gunter; Cyrys, Josef; Pitz, Mike; Gu, Jianwei; Kusch, Thomas; Flentje, Harald; Quass, Ulrich; Kaminski, Heinz; Kuhlbusch, Thomas A.J.; Meinhardt, Frank; Schwerin, Andreas; Bath, Olaf; Ries, Ludwig; Gerwig, Holger; Wirtz, Klaus; Fiebig, Markus
    The German Ultrafine Aerosol Network (GUAN) is a cooperative atmospheric observation network, which aims at improving the scientific understanding of aerosol-related effects in the troposphere. The network addresses research questions dedicated to both climate- and health-related effects. GUAN's core activity has been the continuous collection of tropospheric particle number size distributions and black carbon mass concentrations at 17 observation sites in Germany. These sites cover various environmental settings including urban traffic, urban background, rural background, and Alpine mountains. In association with partner projects, GUAN has implemented a high degree of harmonisation of instrumentation, operating procedures, and data evaluation procedures. The quality of the measurement data is assured by laboratory intercomparisons as well as on-site comparisons with reference instruments. This paper describes the measurement sites, instrumentation, quality assurance, and data evaluation procedures in the network as well as the EBAS repository, where the data sets can be obtained (doi:10.5072/guan).
  • Item
    Intercomparison of 15 aerodynamic particle size spectrometers (APS 3321): Uncertainties in particle sizing and number size distribution
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) Pfeifer, Sascha; Müller, Thomas; Weinhold, Kay; Zikova, Nadezda; dos Santos, Sebastiao Martins; Marinoni, Angela; Bischof, Oliver F.; Kykal, Carsten; Ries, Ludwig; Meinhardt, Frank; Aalto, Pasi; Mihalopoulos, Nikolaos; Wiedensohler, Alfred
    Aerodynamic particle size spectrometers are a well-established method to measure number size distributions of coarse mode particles in the atmosphere. Quality assurance is essential for atmospheric observational aerosol networks to obtain comparable results with known uncertainties. In a laboratory study within the framework of ACTRIS (Aerosols, Clouds, and Trace gases Research Infrastructure Network), 15 aerodynamic particle size spectrometers (APS model 3321, TSI Inc., St. Paul, MN, USA) were compared with a focus on flow rates, particle sizing, and the unit-to-unit variability of the particle number size distribution. Flow rate deviations were relatively small (within a few percent), while the sizing accuracy was found to be within 10 % compared to polystyrene latex (PSL) reference particles. The unit-to-unit variability in terms of the particle number size distribution during this study was within 10 % to 20 % for particles in the range of 0.9 up to 3 µm, which is acceptable for atmospheric measurements. For particles smaller than that, the variability increased up to 60 %, probably caused by differences in the counting efficiencies of individual units. Number size distribution data for particles smaller than 0.9 µm in aerodynamic diameter should only be used with caution. For particles larger than 3 µm, the unit-to-unit variability increased as well. A possible reason is an insufficient sizing accuracy in combination with a steeply sloping particle number size distribution and the increasing uncertainty due to decreasing counting. Particularly this uncertainty of the particle number size distribution must be considered if higher moments of the size distribution such as the particle volume or mass are calculated, which require the conversion of the aerodynamic diameter measured to a volume equivalent diameter. In order to perform a quantitative quality assurance, a traceable reference method for the particle number concentration in the size range 0.5–3 µm is needed.
  • Item
    Simulating the formation of carbonaceous aerosol in a European Megacity (Paris) during the MEGAPOLI summer and winter campaigns
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) Fountoukis, Christos; Megaritis, Athanasios G.; Skyllakou, Ksakousti; Charalampidis, Panagiotis E.; van der Gon, Hugo A.C.Denier; Crippa, Monica; Prévôt, André S.H.; Fachinger, Friederike; Wiedensohler, Alfred; Pilinis, Christodoulos; Pandis, Spyros N.
    We use a three-dimensional regional chemical transport model (PMCAMx) with high grid resolution and high-resolution emissions (4 × 4 km2) over the Paris greater area to simulate the formation of carbonaceous aerosol during a summer (July 2009) and a winter (January/February 2010) period as part of the MEGAPOLI (megacities: emissions, urban, regional, and global atmospheric pollution and climate effects, and Integrated tools for assessment and mitigation) campaigns. Model predictions of carbonaceous aerosol are compared against Aerodyne aerosol mass spectrometer and black carbon (BC) high time resolution measurements from three ground sites. PMCAMx predicts BC concentrations reasonably well reproducing the majority (70 %) of the hourly data within a factor of two during both periods. The agreement for the summertime secondary organic aerosol (OA) concentrations is also encouraging (mean bias = 0.1 µg m−3) during a photochemically intense period. The model tends to underpredict the summertime primary OA concentrations in the Paris greater area (by approximately 0.8 µg m−3) mainly due to missing primary OA emissions from cooking activities. The total cooking emissions are estimated to be approximately 80 mg d−1 per capita and have a distinct diurnal profile in which 50 % of the daily cooking OA is emitted during lunch time (12:00–14:00 LT) and 20 % during dinner time (20:00–22:00 LT). Results also show a large underestimation of secondary OA in the Paris greater area during wintertime (mean bias =  −2.3 µg m−3) pointing towards a secondary OA formation process during low photochemical activity periods that is not simulated in the model.
  • Item
    Evaluation of the size segregation of elemental carbon (EC) emission in Europe: Influence on the simulation of EC long-range transportation
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) Chen, Ying; Cheng, Ya-Fang; Nordmann, Stephan; Birmili, Wolfram; van der Gon, Hugo A.C. Denier; Ma, Nan; Wolke, Ralf; Wehner, Birgit; Sun, Jia; Spindler, Gerald; Mu, Qing; Pöschl, Ulrich; Su, Hang; Wiedensohler, Alfred
    Elemental Carbon (EC) has a significant impact on human health and climate change. In order to evaluate the size segregation of EC emission in the EUCAARI inventory and investigate its influence on the simulation of EC long-range transportation in Europe, we used the fully coupled online Weather Research and Forecasting/Chemistry model (WRF-Chem) at a resolution of 2 km focusing on a region in Germany, in conjunction with a high-resolution EC emission inventory. The ground meteorology conditions, vertical structure and wind pattern were well reproduced by the model. The simulations of particle number and/or mass size distributions were evaluated with observations at the central European background site Melpitz. The fine mode particle concentration was reasonably well simulated, but the coarse mode was substantially overestimated by the model mainly due to the plume with high EC concentration in coarse mode emitted by a nearby point source. The comparisons between simulated EC and Multi-angle Absorption Photometers (MAAP) measurements at Melpitz, Leipzig-TROPOS and Bösel indicated that the coarse mode EC (ECc) emitted from the nearby point sources might be overestimated by a factor of 2–10. The fraction of ECc was overestimated in the emission inventory by about 10–30 % for Russia and 5–10 % for Eastern Europe (e.g., Poland and Belarus). This incorrect size-dependent EC emission results in a shorter atmospheric life time of EC particles and inhibits the long-range transport of EC. A case study showed that this effect caused an underestimation of 20–40 % in the EC mass concentration in Germany under eastern wind pattern.
  • Item
    Seasonal variation of atmospheric particle number concentrations, new particle formation and atmospheric oxidation capacity at the high Arctic site Villum Research Station, Station Nord
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) Nguyen, Quynh T.; Glasius, Marianne; Sørensen, Lise L.; Jensen, Bjarne; Skov, Henrik; Birmili, Wolfram; Wiedensohler, Alfred; Kristensson, Adam; Nøjgaard, Jacob K.; Massling, Andreas
    This work presents an analysis of the physical properties of sub-micrometer aerosol particles measured at the high Arctic site Villum Research Station, Station Nord (VRS), northeast Greenland, between July 2010 and February 2013. The study focuses on particle number concentrations, particle number size distributions and the occurrence of new particle formation (NPF) events and their seasonality in the high Arctic, where observations and characterization of such aerosol particle properties and corresponding events are rare and understanding of related processes is lacking. A clear accumulation mode was observed during the darker months from October until mid-May, which became considerably more pronounced during the prominent Arctic haze months from March to mid-May. In contrast, nucleation- and Aitken-mode particles were predominantly observed during the summer months. Analysis of wind direction and wind speed indicated possible contributions of marine sources from the easterly side of the station to the observed summertime particle number concentrations, while southwesterly to westerly winds dominated during the darker months. NPF events lasting from hours to days were mostly observed from June until August, with fewer events observed during the months with less sunlight, i.e., March, April, September and October. The results tend to indicate that ozone (O3) might be weakly anti-correlated with particle number concentrations of the nucleation-mode range (10–30 nm) in almost half of the NPF events, while no positive correlation was observed. Calculations of air mass back trajectories using the Hybrid Single Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory (HYSPLIT) model for the NPF event days suggested that the onset or interruption of events could possibly be explained by changes in air mass origin. A map of event occurrence probability was computed, indicating that southerly air masses from over the Greenland Sea were more likely linked to those events.
  • Item
    Variation of CCN activity during new particle formation events in the North China Plain
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) Ma, Nan; Zhao, Chunsheng; Tao, Jiangchuan; Wu, Zhijun; Kecorius, Simonas; Wang, Zhibin; Größ, Johannes; Liu, Hongjian; Bian, Yuxuan; Kuang, Ye; Teich, Monique; Spindler, Gerald; Müller, Konrad; van Pinxteren, Dominik; Herrmann, Hartmut; Hu, Min; Wiedensohler, Alfred
    The aim of this investigation was to obtain a better understanding of the variability of the cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) activity during new particle formation (NPF) events in an anthropogenically polluted atmosphere of the North China Plain (NCP). We investigated the size-resolved activation ratio as well as particle number size distribution, hygroscopicity, and volatility during a 4-week intensive field experiment in summertime at a regional atmospheric observatory in Xianghe. Interestingly, based on a case study, two types of NPF events were found, in which the newly formed particles exhibited either a higher or a lower hygroscopicity. Therefore, the CCN activity of newly formed particles in different NPF events was largely different, indicating that a simple parameterization of particle CCN activity during NPF events over the NCP might lead to poor estimates of CCN number concentration (NCCN). For a more accurate estimation of the potential NCCN during NPF events, the variation of CCN activity has to be taken into account. Considering that a fixed activation ratio curve or critical diameter are usually used to calculate NCCN, the influence of the variation of particle CCN activity on the calculation of NCCN during NPF events was evaluated based on the two parameterizations. It was found that NCCN might be underestimated by up to 30 % if a single activation ratio curve (representative of the region and season) were to be used in the calculation; and might be underestimated by up to 50 % if a fixed critical diameter (representative of the region and season) were used. Therefore, we suggest not using a fixed critical diameter in the prediction of NCCN in NPF. If real-time CCN activity data are not available, using a proper fixed activation ratio curve can be an alternative but compromised choice.