Aerosol partitioning between the interstitial and the condensed phase in mixed-phase clouds

Bart Verheggen, Julie Cozic, Ernest Weingartner, Keith Bower, Stephan Mertes, Paul Connolly, Martin Gallagher, Michael Flynn, Tom Choularton, Urs Baltensperger

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    The partitioning of aerosol particles between the cloud and the interstitial phase (i.e., unactivated aerosol) has been investigated during several Cloud and Aerosol Characterization Experiments (CLACE-3, CLACE-3 1/2 and CLACE-4) conducted in winter and summer 2004 and winter 2005 at the high alpine research station Jungfraujoch (3580 m altitude, Switzerland). Ambient air was sampled using different inlets in order to determine the activated fraction of aerosol particles, FN, defined as the fraction of the total aerosol number concentration (with particle diameter dp > 100 nm) that has been incorporated into cloud particles. The liquid and ice water content of mixed-phase clouds were characterized by analyzing multiple cloud probes. The dependence of the activated fraction on several environmental factors is discussed on the basis of more than 900 h of in-cloud observations and parameterizations for key variables are given. FN is found to increase with increasing liquid water content and to decrease with increasing particle number concentration in liquid clouds. FN also decreases with increasing cloud ice mass fraction and with decreasing temperature from 0 to -25°C. The Wegener-Bergeron-Findeisen process probably contributed to this trend, since the presence of ice crystals causes liquid droplets to evaporate, thus releasing the formerly activated particles back into the interstitial phase. Ice nucleation could also have prevented additional cloud condensation nuclei from activating. The observed activation behavior has significant implications for our understanding of the indirect effect of aerosols on climate. Copyright 2007 by the American Geophysical Union.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article numberD23202
    JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres
    Volume112
    Issue number23
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 16 Dec 2007

    Keywords

    • ALPINE SITE JUNGFRAUJOCH
    • CONNECTED FLOW CONDITIONS
    • ICE NUCLEATING
    • ABILITY
    • 3580 M ASL
    • DROPLET ACTIVATION
    • FREEZING MODES
    • PART I
    • PARTICLES
    • SIZE
    • EVOLUTION

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