Long-range transported free tropospheric particles can play a significant role on heterogeneous ice nucleation. Using optical and electron microscopy we examine the physicochemical characteristics of ice nucleating particles (INPs). Particles were collected on substrates from the free troposphere at the remote Pico Mountain Observatory in the Azores Islands, after long-range transport and aging over the Atlantic Ocean. We investigate four specific events to study the ice formation potential by the collected particles with different ages and transport patterns. We use single-particle analysis, as well as bulk analysis to characterize particle populations. Both analyses show substantial differences in particle composition between samples from the four events; in addition, single-particle microscopy analysis indicates that most particles are coated by organic material. The identified INPs contained mixtures of dust, aged sea salt and soot, and organic material acquired either at the source or during transport. The temperature and relative humidity (RH) at which ice formed, varied only by 5% between samples, despite differences in particle composition, sources, and transport patterns. We hypothesize that this small variation in the onset RH may be due to the coating material on the particles. This study underscores and motivates the need to further investigate how long-range transported and atmospherically aged free tropospheric particles impact ice cloud formation
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
China, Swarup; Alpert, Peter A.; Zhang, B.; Schum, Simeon; Dzepina, Katja; Wright, Kendra; Owen, R. Chris; Fialho, Paulo; Mazzoleni, Lynn; Mazzoleni, Claudio; and Knopf, Daniel A., "Ice cloud formation potential by free tropospheric particles from long-range transport over the Northern Atlantic Ocean" (2017). Department of Chemistry Publications. 8.