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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/19045

Title: Laboratory Studies of Deposition Mode Heterogeneous Ice Nucleation: Effect of Ice Nuclei Composition, Size and Surface Area
Authors: Kanji, Zaminhussein Abdulali
Advisor: Abbatt, Jonathan P. D.
Department: Chemistry
Keywords: Ice Nucleation
Mineral Dust
Deposition Mode
Issue Date: 18-Feb-2010
Abstract: The indirect aerosol effect contributes to major uncertainties in determining the radiation budget of the earth. A large uncertainty is due to the formation of ice clouds onto natural or anthropogenic aerosols. Field studies have shown that mineral type particles are often associated with ice crystals in the mid-upper troposphere and given the long residence time in the atmosphere of dust particles (~2 weeks in the absence of precipitation), their contribution to ice formation processes is not fully defined. In order to probe ice formation onto natural mineral dust in a setting where it could be suspended as aerosol, a new continuous flow diffusion chamber (CFDC) was built. This allowed investigations of the effects of total aerosol surface area and particle size. The CFDC was also used in an international inter-comparison of ice nucleation instrumentation to compare efficiencies of soot, biological aerosol (bacteria) and samples of natural desert dusts from different regions of the world. The laboratory observations were parameterized using nucleation rates (Jhet) and contact angles () as described by classical nucleation theory. For both this experimental technique and a static one developed during the candidate’s Masters degree, mineral dust particulate proved to be the most efficient ice nuclei (IN) activating at RH with respect to ice (RHi) as low as 105% at T = 233 K. The efficiency varied with particle size and aerosol surface area (SA). Large particles or higher SA activated at lower RHi than small particles or lower SA. The static chamber was sensitive to the first ice event out of a large SA and therefore gave true onset RHi, which was lower than the onset defined by the CFDC studies, which was not sensitive to a single ice event. In addition the static chamber used a broader size range of particulate matter, including super micron particles while the CFDC particles sizes were restricted to below 0.5 µm. Soot and organic coated dust particles were inefficient IN compared to pure dust. Soot aerosols showed some efficiency at T < 233K where deposition ice formation was apparent. The hygroscopic organics had intermediate ice activity between dusts and alkyl-organics and soot. Bacteria aerosols were active in the deposition mode for T as high as 247 K. Contact angles () computed for ice germs forming onto natural mineral dust were small, 7<  < 29, at 223 K for RH ranging from ice to water saturation. It was concluded that there is no single value for the onset of ice formation in the atmosphere via deposition freezing. The associated contact angles show that there is a distribution of active sites on IN and that not all active sites have the same affinity for initiation of ice formation even within the same aerosol type. This work provides evidence that deposition mode nucleation can be an alternate pathway to homogeneous nucleation when mineral aerosols are present in the troposphere since the high T - low RH conditions required for deposition mode nucleation are more easily encountered in the atmosphere than the low T - high RH required for homogeneous nucleation.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/19045
Appears in Collections:Doctoral
Department of Chemistry - Doctoral theses

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