Investigation of the optical and cloud forming properties of pollution, biomass burning, and mineral dust aerosols
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This dissertation describes the use of measured aerosol size distributions and size-resolved hygroscopic growth to examine the physical and chemical properties of several particle classes. The primary objective of this work was to investigate the optical and cloud forming properties of a range of ambient aerosol types measured in a number of different locations. The tool used for most of these analyses is a differential mobility analyzer / tandem differential mobility analyzer (DMA / TDMA) system developed in our research group. To collect the data described in two of the chapters of this dissertation, an aircraft-based version of the DMA / TDMA was deployed to Japan and California. The data described in two other chapters were conveniently collected during a period when the aerosol of interest came to us. The unique aspect of this analysis is the use of these data to isolate the size distributions of distinct aerosol types in order to quantify their optical and cloud forming properties. I used collected data during the Asian Aerosol Characterization Experiment (ACE-Asia) to examine the composition and homogeneity of a complex aerosol generated in the deserts and urban regions of China and other Asian countries. An aircraft-based TDMA was used for the first time during this campaign to examine the size-resolved hygroscopic properties of the aerosol. The Asian Dust Above Monterey (ADAM-2003) study was designed both to evaluate the degree to which models can predict the long-range transport of Asian dust, and to examine the physical and optical properties of that aged dust upon reaching the California coast. Aerosol size distributions and hygroscopic growth were measured in College Station, Texas to investigate the cloud nucleating and optical properties of a biomass burning aerosol generated from fires on the Yucatan Peninsula. Measured aerosol size distributions and size-resolved hygroscopicity and volatility were used to infer critical supersaturation distributions of the distinct particle types that were observed during this period. The predicted cloud condensation nuclei concentrations were used in a cloud model to determine the impact of the different aerosol types on the expected cloud droplet concentration. RH-dependent aerosol extinction coefficients were also calculated.
Lee, Yong Seob (2003). Investigation of the optical and cloud forming properties of pollution, biomass burning, and mineral dust aerosols. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from