The importance of temporal collocation for the evaluation of aerosol models with observations

| Atmos. Chem. Phys. | 16 (2) (1065-1079)

It is often implicitly assumed that over suitably long periods the mean of observations and models should be comparable, even if they have different temporal sampling. We assess the errors incurred due to ignoring temporal sampling and show that they are of similar magnitude as (but smaller than) actual model errors (20–60 %).

Using temporal sampling from remote-sensing data sets, the satellite imager MODIS (MODerate resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) and the ground-based sun photometer network AERONET (AErosol Robotic NETwork), and three different global aerosol models, we compare annual and monthly averages of full model data to sampled model data. Our results show that sampling errors as large as 100 % in AOT (aerosol optical thickness), 0.4 in AE (Ångström Exponent) and 0.05 in SSA (single scattering albedo) are possible. Even in daily averages, sampling errors can be significant. Moreover these sampling errors are often correlated over long distances giving rise to artificial contrasts between pristine and polluted events and regions. Additionally, we provide evidence that suggests that models will underestimate these errors. To prevent sampling errors, model data should be temporally collocated to the observations before any analysis is made.

We also discuss how this work has consequences for in situ measurements (e.g. aircraft campaigns or surface measurements) in model evaluation.

Although this study is framed in the context of model evaluation, it has a clear and direct relevance to climatologies derived from observational data sets.

Amplification of Arctic warming by past air pollution reductions in Europe

| Nat. Geosci. | Advance online publication
atmospheric chemistry , atmospheric dynamics , attribution , climate and earth system modelling

The Arctic region is warming considerably faster than the rest of the globe1, with important consequences for the ecosystems2 and human exploration of the region3. However, the reasons behind this Arctic amplification are not entirely clear4. As a result of measures to enhance air quality, anthropogenic emissions of particulate matter and its precursors have drastically decreased in parts of the Northern Hemisphere over the past three decades5. Here we present simulations with an Earth system model with comprehensive aerosol physics and chemistry that show that the sulfate aerosol reductions in Europe since 1980 can potentially explain a significant fraction of Arctic warming over that period. Specifically, the Arctic region receives an additional 0.3 W m−2 of energy, and warms by 0.5 °C on annual average in simulations with declining European sulfur emissions in line with historical observations, compared with a model simulation with fixed European emissions at 1980 levels. Arctic warming is amplified mainly in fall and winter, but the warming is initiated in summer by an increase in incoming solar radiation as well as an enhanced poleward oceanic and atmospheric heat transport. The simulated summertime energy surplus reduces sea-ice cover, which leads to a transfer of heat from the Arctic Ocean to the atmosphere. We conclude that air quality regulations in the Northern Hemisphere, the ocean and atmospheric circulation, and Arctic climate are inherently linked.

The significance of land-atmosphere interactions in the Earth system—iLEAPS achievements and perspectives

| Antropocene | In press

The integrated land ecosystem-atmosphere processes study (iLEAPS) is an international research project focussing on the fundamental processes that link land-atmosphere exchange, climate, the water cycle, and tropospheric chemistry. The project, iLEAPS, was established 2004 within the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP). During its first decade, iLEAPS has proven to be a vital project, well equipped to build a community to address the challenges involved in understanding the complex Earth system: multidisciplinary, integrative approaches for both observations and modeling. The iLEAPS community has made major advances in process understanding, land-surface modeling, and observation techniques and networks. The modes of iLEAPS operation include elucidating specific iLEAPS scientific questions through networks of process studies, field campaigns, modeling, long-term integrated field studies, international interdisciplinary mega-campaigns, synthesis studies, databases, as well as conferences on specific scientific questions and synthesis meetings. Another essential component of iLEAPS is knowledge transfer and it also encourages community- and policy-related outreach activities associated with the regional integrative projects. As a result of its first decade of work, iLEAPS is now setting the agenda for its next phase (2014–2024) under the new international initiative, future Earth. Human influence has always been an important part of land-atmosphere science but in order to respond to the new challenges of global sustainability, closer ties with social science and economics groups will be necessary to produce realistic estimates of land use and anthropogenic emissions by analysing future population increase, migration patterns, food production allocation, land management practices, energy production, industrial development, and urbanization.

Erratum to ‘Biomagnification of Organic Pollutants in Benthic and Pelagic Marine Food Chains from the Baltic Sea.’

| Sci. Total Environ. | 407 (21) (5803-5804)

Size-resolved cloud condensation nuclei concentration measurements in the Arctic: two case studies from the summer of 2008

| Atmos. Chem. Phys. | 15 (13803-13817)

The Arctic is one of the most vulnerable regions affected by climate change. Extensive measurement data are needed to understand the atmospheric processes governing this vulnerability. Among these, data describing cloud formation potential are of particular interest, since the indirect effect of aerosols on the climate system is still poorly understood. In this paper we present, for the first time, size-resolved cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) data obtained in the Arctic. The measurements were conducted during two periods in the summer of 2008: one in June and one in August, at the Zeppelin research station (78°54´ N, 11°53´ E) in Svalbard. Trajectory analysis indicates that during the measurement period in June 2008, air masses predominantly originated from the Arctic, whereas the measurements from August 2008 were influenced by mid-latitude air masses. CCN supersaturation (SS) spectra obtained on the 27 June, before size-resolved measurements were begun, and spectra from the 21 and 24 August, conducted before and after the measurement period, revealed similarities between the 2 months. From the ratio between CCN concentration and the total particle number concentration (CN) as a function of dry particle diameter (Dp) at a SS of 0.4 %, the activation diameter (D50), corresponding to CCN / CN = 0.50, was estimated. D50 was found to be 60 and 67 nm for the examined periods in June and August 2008, respectively. Corresponding D50 hygroscopicity parameter (κ) values were estimated to be 0.4 and 0.3 for June and August 2008, respectively. These values can be compared to hygroscopicity values estimated from bulk chemical composition, where κ was calculated to be 0.5 for both June and August 2008. While the agreement between the 2 months is reasonable, the difference in κ between the different methods indicates a size dependence in the particle composition, which is likely explained by a higher fraction of inorganics in the bulk aerosol samples.

Additions and corrections to ‘Predicted Distribution and Ecological Assessment of a “Segregated” Hydrofluoroether in the Japanese Environment´

| Environ. Sci. Technol. | 37 (6) (1228-1228)

Substitution of long chain fluorinated copolymers for durable water repellent (DWR) textile modification

| Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC)

SETAC Europe, 25th Annual Meeting | December 6, 2022 | Barcelona, Spain

An empirically derived inorganic sea spray source function incorporating sea surface temperature

| Atmos. Chem. Phys. | 15 (11047-11066)

We have developed an inorganic sea spray source function that is based upon state-of-the-art measurements of sea spray aerosol production using a temperature-controlled plunging jet sea spray aerosol chamber. The size-resolved particle production was measured between 0.01 and 10 μm dry diameter. Particle production decreased non-linearly with increasing seawater temperature (between −1 and 30 °C) similar to previous findings. In addition, we observed that the particle effective radius, as well as the particle surface, particle volume and particle mass, increased with increasing seawater temperature due to increased production of particles with dry diameters greater than 1 μm. By combining these measurements with the volume of air entrained by the plunging jet we have determined the size-resolved particle flux as a function of air entrainment. Through the use of existing parameterisations of air entrainment as a function of wind speed, we were subsequently able to scale our laboratory measurements of particle production to wind speed. By scaling in this way we avoid some of the difficulties associated with defining the "white area" of the laboratory whitecap – a contentious issue when relating laboratory measurements of particle production to oceanic whitecaps using the more frequently applied whitecap method.

The here-derived inorganic sea spray source function was implemented in a Lagrangian particle dispersion model (FLEXPART – FLEXible PARTicle dispersion model). An estimated annual global flux of inorganic sea spray aerosol of 5.9 ± 0.2 Pg yr−1 was derived that is close to the median of estimates from the same model using a wide range of existing sea spray source functions. When using the source function derived here, the model also showed good skill in predicting measurements of Na+ concentration at a number of field sites further underlining the validity of our source function.

In a final step, the sensitivity of a large-scale model (NorESM – the Norwegian Earth System Model) to our new source function was tested. Compared to the previously implemented parameterisation, a clear decrease of sea spray aerosol number flux and increase in aerosol residence time was observed, especially over the Southern Ocean. At the same time an increase in aerosol optical depth due to an increase in the number of particles with optically relevant sizes was found. That there were noticeable regional differences may have important implications for aerosol optical properties and number concentrations, subsequently also affecting the indirect radiative forcing by non-sea spray anthropogenic aerosols.

A large-scale model for simulating the fate & transport of organic contaminants in river basins

| Chemosphere | 144 (803-810)

Cellular Dose of Partly Soluble Cu Particle Aerosols at the Air–Liquid Interface Using an In Vitro Lung Cell Exposure System

| J Aerosol Med Pulm Drug Deliv | 26 (2) (84-93)
air–liquid interface , cellular doses , copper particles , in vitro exposure system , nanoparticle deposition , nanoparticle dissolution , nanotoxicology

There is currently a need to develop and test in vitro systems for predicting the toxicity of nanoparticles. One challenge is to determine the actual cellular dose of nanoparticles after exposure.
In this study, human epithelial lung cells (A549) were exposed to airborne Cu particles at the air-liquid interface (ALI). The cellular dose was determined for two different particle sizes at different deposition conditions, including constant and pulsed Cu aerosol flow.
Airborne polydisperse particles with a geometric mean diameter (GMD) of 180 nm [geometric standard deviation (GSD) 1.5, concentration 10(5) particles/mL] deposited at the ALI yielded a cellular dose of 0.4-2.6 μg/cm(2) at pulsed flow and 1.6-7.6 μg/cm(2) at constant flow. Smaller polydisperse particles in the nanoregime (GMD 80 nm, GSD 1.5, concentration 10(7) particles/mL) resulted in a lower cellular dose of 0.01-0.05 μg/cm(2) at pulsed flow, whereas no deposition was observed at constant flow. Exposure experiments with and without cells showed that the Cu particles were partly dissolved upon deposition on cells and in contact with medium.
Different cellular doses were obtained for the different Cu particle sizes (generated with different methods). Furthermore, the cellular doses were affected by the flow conditions in the cell exposure system and the solubility of Cu. The cellular doses of Cu presented here are the amount of Cu that remained on the cells after completion of an experiment. As Cu particles were partly dissolved, Cu (a nonnegligible contribution) was, in addition, present and analyzed in the nourishing medium present beneath the cells. This study presents cellular doses induced by Cu particles and demonstrates difficulties with deposition of nanoparticles at the ALI and of partially soluble particles.

Contact information

Visiting addresses:

Geovetenskapens Hus,
Svante Arrhenius väg 8, Stockholm

Arrheniuslaboratoriet, Svante Arrhenius väg 16, Stockholm (Unit for Toxicological Chemistry)

Mailing address:
Department of Environmental Science
Stockholm University
106 91 Stockholm

Press enquiries should be directed to:

Stella Papadopoulou
Science Communicator
Phone +46 (0)8 674 70 11