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  • 2013-2022
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  • Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (...

  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Romero-Alvarez, Johana; Lupaşcu, Aurelia; Lowe, Douglas; Badia, Alba; +4 Authors

    Tropospheric ozone (O3) concentrations depend on a combination of hemispheric, regional, and local-scale processes. Estimates of how much O3 is produced locally vs. transported from further afield are essential in air quality management and regulatory policies. Here, a tagged-ozone mechanism within the Weather Research and Forecasting model coupled with chemistry (WRF-Chem) is used to quantify the contributions to surface O3 in the UK from anthropogenic nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from inside and outside the UK during May–August 2015. The contribution of the different source regions to three regulatory O3 metrics is also examined. It is shown that model simulations predict the concentration and spatial distribution of surface O3 with a domain-wide mean bias of −3.7 ppbv. Anthropogenic NOx emissions from the UK and Europe account for 13 % and 16 %, respectively, of the monthly mean surface O3 in the UK, as the majority (71 %) of O3 originates from the hemispheric background. Hemispheric O3 contributes the most to concentrations in the north and the west of the UK with peaks in May, whereas European and UK contributions are most significant in the east, south-east, and London, i.e. the UK's most populated areas, intensifying towards June and July. Moreover, O3 from European sources is generally transported to the UK rather than produced in situ. It is demonstrated that more stringent emission controls over continental Europe, particularly in western Europe, would be necessary to improve the health-related metric MDA8 O3 above 50 and 60 ppbv. Emission controls over larger areas, such as the Northern Hemisphere, are instead required to lessen the impacts on ecosystems as quantified by the AOT40 metric.

    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Copernicus Publicati...arrow_drop_down
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    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Copernicus Publicati...arrow_drop_down
      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Rowlinson, Matthew J.; Rap, Alexandru; Hamilton, Douglas S.; Pope, Richard J.; +7 Authors

    Tropospheric ozone concentrations are sensitive to natural emissions of precursor compounds. In contrast to existing assumptions, recent evidence indicates that terrestrial vegetation emissions in the pre-industrial era were larger than in the present day. We use a chemical transport model and a radiative transfer model to show that revised inventories of pre-industrial fire and biogenic emissions lead to an increase in simulated pre-industrial ozone concentrations, decreasing the estimated pre-industrial to present-day tropospheric ozone radiative forcing by up to 34 % (0.38 to 0.25 W m−2). We find that this change is sensitive to employing biomass burning and biogenic emissions inventories based on matching vegetation patterns, as the co-location of emission sources enhances the effect on ozone formation. Our forcing estimates are at the lower end of existing uncertainty range estimates (0.2–0.6 W m−2), without accounting for other sources of uncertainty. Thus, future work should focus on reassessing the uncertainty range of tropospheric ozone radiative forcing.

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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Clyne, Margot; Lamarque, Jean-Francois; Mills, Michael J.; Khodri, Myriam; +19 Authors

    As part of the Model Intercomparison Project on the climatic response to Volcanic forcing (VolMIP), several climate modeling centers performed a coordinated pre-study experiment with interactive stratospheric aerosol models simulating the volcanic aerosol cloud from an eruption resembling the 1815 Mt. Tambora eruption (VolMIP-Tambora ISA ensemble). The pre-study provided the ancillary ability to assess intermodel diversity in the radiative forcing for a large stratospheric-injecting equatorial eruption when the volcanic aerosol cloud is simulated interactively. An initial analysis of the VolMIP-Tambora ISA ensemble showed large disparities between models in the stratospheric global mean aerosol optical depth (AOD). In this study, we now show that stratospheric global mean AOD differences among the participating models are primarily due to differences in aerosol size, which we track here by effective radius. We identify specific physical and chemical processes that are missing in some models and/or parameterized differently between models, which are together causing the differences in effective radius. In particular, our analysis indicates that interactively tracking hydroxyl radical (OH) chemistry following a large volcanic injection of sulfur dioxide (SO2) is an important factor in allowing for the timescale for sulfate formation to be properly simulated. In addition, depending on the timescale of sulfate formation, there can be a large difference in effective radius and subsequently AOD that results from whether the SO2 is injected in a single model grid cell near the location of the volcanic eruption, or whether it is injected as a longitudinally averaged band around the Earth.

    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Atmospheric Chemistr...arrow_drop_down
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    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Stolzenburg, Dominik; Simon, Mario; Ranjithkumar, Ananth; Kürten, Andreas; +74 Authors

    In the present-day atmosphere, sulfuric acid is the most important vapour for aerosol particle formation and initial growth. However, the growth rates of nanoparticles (<10 nm) from sulfuric acid remain poorly measured. Therefore, the effect of stabilizing bases, the contribution of ions and the impact of attractive forces on molecular collisions are under debate. Here, we present precise growth rate measurements of uncharged sulfuric acid particles from 1.8 to 10 nm, performed under atmospheric conditions in the CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) CLOUD chamber. Our results show that the evaporation of sulfuric acid particles above 2 nm is negligible, and growth proceeds kinetically even at low ammonia concentrations. The experimental growth rates exceed the hard-sphere kinetic limit for the condensation of sulfuric acid. We demonstrate that this results from van der Waals forces between the vapour molecules and particles and disentangle it from charge–dipole interactions. The magnitude of the enhancement depends on the assumed particle hydration and collision kinetics but is increasingly important at smaller sizes, resulting in a steep rise in the observed growth rates with decreasing size. Including the experimental results in a global model, we find that the enhanced growth rate of sulfuric acid particles increases the predicted particle number concentrations in the upper free troposphere by more than 50 %.

    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Atmospheric Chemistr...arrow_drop_down
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    Copernicus Publications
    Other ORP type . 2020
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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Atmospheric Chemistr...arrow_drop_down
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      Copernicus Publications
      Other ORP type . 2020
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    Authors: Marinou, Eleni; Tesche, Matthias; Nenes, Athanasios; Ansmann, Albert; +12 Authors

    Aerosols that are efficient ice-nucleating particles (INPs) are crucial for the formation of cloud ice via heterogeneous nucleation in the atmosphere. The distribution of INPs on a large spatial scale and as a function of height determines their impact on clouds and climate. However, in situ measurements of INPs provide sparse coverage over space and time. A promising approach to address this gap is to retrieve INP concentration profiles by combining particle concentration profiles derived by lidar measurements with INP efficiency parameterizations for different freezing mechanisms (immersion freezing, deposition nucleation). Here, we assess the feasibility of this new method for both ground-based and spaceborne lidar measurements, using in situ observations collected with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and subsequently analyzed with the FRIDGE (FRankfurt Ice nucleation Deposition freezinG Experiment) INP counter from an experimental campaign at Cyprus in April 2016. Analyzing five case studies we calculated the cloud-relevant particle number concentrations using lidar measurements (n250,dry with an uncertainty of 20 % to 40 % and Sdry with an uncertainty of 30 % to 50 %), and we assessed the suitability of the different INP parameterizations with respect to the temperature range and the type of particles considered. Specifically, our analysis suggests that our calculations using the parameterization of Ullrich et al. (2017) (applicable for the temperature range −50 to −33 ∘C) agree within 1 order of magnitude with the in situ observations of nINP; thus, the parameterization of Ullrich et al. (2017) can efficiently address the deposition nucleation pathway in dust-dominated environments. Additionally, our calculations using the combination of the parameterizations of DeMott et al. (2015, 2010) (applicable for the temperature range −35 to −9 ∘C) agree within 2 orders of magnitude with the in situ observations of INP concentrations (nINP) and can thus efficiently address the immersion/condensation pathway of dust and nondust particles. The same conclusion is derived from the compilation of the parameterizations of DeMott et al. (2015) for dust and Ullrich et al. (2017) for soot. Peer reviewed

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    Copernicus Publications
    Other ORP type . 2019
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      Copernicus Publications
      Other ORP type . 2019
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    Authors: Kipling, Zak; Labbouz, Laurent; Stier, Philip;

    The interactions between aerosols and convective clouds represent some of the greatest uncertainties in the climate impact of aerosols in the atmosphere. A wide variety of mechanisms have been proposed by which aerosols may invigorate, suppress or change the properties of individual convective clouds, some of which can be reproduced in high-resolution limited-area models. However, there may also be mesoscale, regional or global adjustments which modulate or dampen such impacts which cannot be captured in the limited domain of such models. The Convective Cloud Field Model (CCFM) provides a mechanism to simulate a population of convective clouds, complete with microphysics and interactions between clouds, within each grid column at resolutions used for global climate modelling, so that a representation of the microphysical aerosol response within each parameterised cloud type is possible. Using CCFM within the global aerosol–climate model ECHAM–HAM, we demonstrate how the parameterised cloud field responds to the present-day anthropogenic aerosol perturbation in different regions. In particular, we show that in regions with strongly forced deep convection and/or significant aerosol effects via large-scale processes, the changes in the convective cloud field due to microphysical effects are rather small; however in a more weakly forced regime such as the Caribbean, where large-scale aerosol effects are small, a signature of convective invigoration does become apparent.

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    Copernicus Publications
    Other ORP type . 2020
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      Copernicus Publications
      Other ORP type . 2020
  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Bednarz, Ewa M.; Maycock, Amanda C.; Braesicke, Peter; Telford, Paul J.; +2 Authors

    The atmospheric response to the 11-year solar cycle is separated into the contributions from changes in direct radiative heating and photolysis rates using specially designed sensitivity simulations with the UM-UKCA (Unified Model coupled to the United Kingdom Chemistry and Aerosol model) chemistry–climate model. We perform a number of idealised time-slice experiments under perpetual solar maximum (SMAX) and minimum conditions (SMIN), and we find that contributions from changes in direct heating and photolysis rates are both important for determining the stratospheric shortwave heating, temperature and ozone responses to the amplitude of the 11-year solar cycle. The combined effects of the processes are found to be largely additive in the tropics but nonadditive in the Southern Hemisphere (SH) high latitudes during the dynamically active season. Our results indicate that, in contrast to the original mechanism proposed in the literature, the solar-induced changes in the horizontal shortwave heating rate gradients not only in autumn/early winter but throughout the dynamically active season are important for modulating the dynamical response to changes in solar forcing. In spring, these gradients are strongly influenced by the shortwave heating anomalies at higher southern latitudes, which are closely linked to the concurrent changes in ozone. In addition, our simulations indicate differences in the winter SH dynamical responses between the experiments. We suggest a couple of potential drivers of the simulated differences, i.e. the role of enhanced zonally asymmetric ozone heating brought about by the increased solar-induced ozone levels under SMAX and/or sensitivity of the polar dynamical response to the altitude of the anomalous radiative tendencies. All in all, our results suggest that solar-induced changes in ozone, both in the tropics/mid-latitudes and the polar regions, are important for modulating the SH dynamical response to the 11-year solar cycle. In addition, the markedly nonadditive character of the SH polar vortex response simulated in austral spring highlights the need for consistent model implementation of the solar cycle forcing in both the radiative heating and photolysis schemes.

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    Authors: Fanourgakis, George S.; Kanakidou, Maria; Nenes, Athanasios; Bauer, Susanne E.; +35 Authors

    A total of 16 global chemistry transport models and general circulation models have participated in this study; 14 models have been evaluated with regard to their ability to reproduce the near-surface observed number concentration of aerosol particles and cloud condensation nuclei (CCN), as well as derived cloud droplet number concentration (CDNC). Model results for the period 2011–2015 are compared with aerosol measurements (aerosol particle number, CCN and aerosol particle composition in the submicron fraction) from nine surface stations located in Europe and Japan. The evaluation focuses on the ability of models to simulate the average across time state in diverse environments and on the seasonal and short-term variability in the aerosol properties. There is no single model that systematically performs best across all environments represented by the observations. Models tend to underestimate the observed aerosol particle and CCN number concentrations, with average normalized mean bias (NMB) of all models and for all stations, where data are available, of −24 % and −35 % for particles with dry diameters >50 and >120 nm, as well as −36 % and −34 % for CCN at supersaturations of 0.2 % and 1.0 %, respectively. However, they seem to behave differently for particles activating at very low supersaturations (<0.1 %) than at higher ones. A total of 15 models have been used to produce ensemble annual median distributions of relevant parameters. The model diversity (defined as the ratio of standard deviation to mean) is up to about 3 for simulated N3 (number concentration of particles with dry diameters larger than 3 nm) and up to about 1 for simulated CCN in the extra-polar regions. A global mean reduction of a factor of about 2 is found in the model diversity for CCN at a supersaturation of 0.2 % (CCN0.2) compared to that for N3, maximizing over regions where new particle formation is important. An additional model has been used to investigate potential causes of model diversity in CCN and bias compared to the observations by performing a perturbed parameter ensemble (PPE) accounting for uncertainties in 26 aerosol-related model input parameters. This PPE suggests that biogenic secondary organic aerosol formation and the hygroscopic properties of the organic material are likely to be the major sources of CCN uncertainty in summer, with dry deposition and cloud processing being dominant in winter. Models capture the relative amplitude of the seasonal variability of the aerosol particle number concentration for all studied particle sizes with available observations (dry diameters larger than 50, 80 and 120 nm). The short-term persistence time (on the order of a few days) of CCN concentrations, which is a measure of aerosol dynamic behavior in the models, is underestimated on average by the models by 40 % during winter and 20 % in summer. In contrast to the large spread in simulated aerosol particle and CCN number concentrations, the CDNC derived from simulated CCN spectra is less diverse and in better agreement with CDNC estimates consistently derived from the observations (average NMB −13 % and −22 % for updraft velocities 0.3 and 0.6 m s−1, respectively). In addition, simulated CDNC is in slightly better agreement with observationally derived values at lower than at higher updraft velocities (index of agreement 0.64 vs. 0.65). The reduced spread of CDNC compared to that of CCN is attributed to the sublinear response of CDNC to aerosol particle number variations and the negative correlation between the sensitivities of CDNC to aerosol particle number concentration (∂Nd/∂Na) and to updraft velocity (∂Nd/∂w). Overall, we find that while CCN is controlled by both aerosol particle number and composition, CDNC is sensitive to CCN at low and moderate CCN concentrations and to the updraft velocity when CCN levels are high. Discrepancies are found in sensitivities ∂Nd/∂Na and ∂Nd/∂w; models may be predisposed to be too “aerosol sensitive” or “aerosol insensitive” in aerosol–cloud–climate interaction studies, even if they may capture average droplet numbers well. This is a subtle but profound finding that only the sensitivities can clearly reveal and may explain inter-model biases on the aerosol indirect effect.

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    Authors: Bednarz, Ewa M.; Maycock, Amanda C.; Telford, Paul J.; Braesicke, Peter; +2 Authors

    The 11-year solar cycle forcing is recognised as an important atmospheric forcing; however, there remain uncertainties in characterising the effects of solar variability on the atmosphere from observations and models. Here we present the first detailed assessment of the atmospheric response to the 11-year solar cycle in the UM-UKCA (Unified Model coupled to the United Kingdom Chemistry and Aerosol model) chemistry–climate model (CCM) using a three-member ensemble over the recent past (1966–2010). Comparison of the model simulations is made with satellite observations and reanalysis datasets. The UM-UKCA model produces a statistically significant response to the 11-year solar cycle in stratospheric temperatures, ozone and zonal winds. However, there are also differences in magnitude, spatial structure and timing of the signals compared to observational and reanalysis estimates. This could be due to deficiencies in the model performance, and so we include a critical discussion of the model limitations, and/or uncertainties in the current observational estimates of the solar cycle signals. Importantly, in contrast to many previous studies of the solar cycle impacts, we pay particular attention to the role of the chosen analysis method in UM-UKCA by comparing the model composite and a multiple linear regression (MLR) results. We show that the stratospheric solar responses diagnosed using both techniques largely agree with each other within the associated uncertainties; however, the results show that apparently different signals can be identified by the methods in the troposphere and in the tropical lower stratosphere. Lastly, we examine how internal atmospheric variability affects the detection of the 11-year solar responses in the model by comparing the results diagnosed from the three individual ensemble members (as opposed to those diagnosed from the full ensemble). We show overall agreement between the responses diagnosed for the ensemble members in the tropical and mid-latitude mid-stratosphere to lower mesosphere but larger apparent differences at Northern Hemisphere (NH) high latitudes during the dynamically active season. Our UM-UKCA results suggest the need for long data sets for confident detection of solar cycle impacts in the atmosphere, as well as for more research on possible interdependence of the solar cycle forcing with other atmospheric forcings and processes (e.g. Quasi-Biennial Oscillation, QBO; El Niño–Southern Oscillation, ENSO).

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    Authors: Haslett, Sophie L.; Taylor, Jonathan W.; Evans, Mathew; Morris, Eleanor; +17 Authors

    Vast stretches of agricultural land in southern and central Africa are burnt between June and September each year, which releases large quantities of aerosol into the atmosphere. The resulting smoke plumes are carried west over the Atlantic Ocean at altitudes between 2 and 4 km. As only limited observational data in West Africa have existed until now, whether this pollution has an impact at lower altitudes has remained unclear. The Dynamics-aerosol-chemistry-cloud interactions in West Africa (DACCIWA) aircraft campaign took place in southern West Africa during June and July 2016, with the aim of observing gas and aerosol properties in the region in order to assess anthropogenic and other influences on the atmosphere. Results presented here show that a significant mass of aged accumulation mode aerosol was present in the southern West African monsoon layer, over both the ocean and the continent. A median dry aerosol concentration of 6.2 µg m−3 (standard temperature and pressure, STP) was observed over the Atlantic Ocean upwind of the major cities, with an interquartile range from 5.3 to 8.0 µg m−3. This concentration increased to a median of 11.1 µg m−3 (8.6 to 15.7 µg m−3) in the immediate outflow from cities. In the continental air mass away from the cities, the median aerosol loading was 7.5 µg m−3 (5.9 to 10.5 µg m−3). The accumulation mode aerosol population over land displayed similar chemical properties to the upstream population, which implies that upstream aerosol is a significant source of aerosol pollution over the continent. The upstream aerosol is found to have most likely originated from central and southern African biomass burning. This demonstrates that biomass burning plumes are being advected northwards, after being entrained into the monsoon layer over the eastern tropical Atlantic Ocean. It is shown observationally for the first time that they contribute up to 80 % to the regional aerosol loading in the monsoon layer over southern West Africa. Results from the COSMO-ART (Consortium for Small-scale Modeling – Aerosol and Reactive Trace gases) and GEOS-Chem models support this conclusion, showing that observed aerosol concentrations over the northern Atlantic Ocean can only be reproduced when the contribution of transported biomass burning aerosol is taken into account. As a result, the large and growing emissions from the coastal cities are overlaid on an already substantial aerosol background. Simulations using COSMO-ART show that cloud droplet number concentrations can increase by up to 27 % as a result of transported biomass burning aerosol. On a regional scale this renders cloud properties and precipitation less sensitive to future increases in anthropogenic emissions. In addition, such high background loadings will lead to greater pollution exposure for the large and growing population in southern West Africa. These results emphasise the importance of including aerosol from across country borders in the development of air pollution policies and interventions in regions such as West Africa.

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  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Romero-Alvarez, Johana; Lupaşcu, Aurelia; Lowe, Douglas; Badia, Alba; +4 Authors

    Tropospheric ozone (O3) concentrations depend on a combination of hemispheric, regional, and local-scale processes. Estimates of how much O3 is produced locally vs. transported from further afield are essential in air quality management and regulatory policies. Here, a tagged-ozone mechanism within the Weather Research and Forecasting model coupled with chemistry (WRF-Chem) is used to quantify the contributions to surface O3 in the UK from anthropogenic nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from inside and outside the UK during May–August 2015. The contribution of the different source regions to three regulatory O3 metrics is also examined. It is shown that model simulations predict the concentration and spatial distribution of surface O3 with a domain-wide mean bias of −3.7 ppbv. Anthropogenic NOx emissions from the UK and Europe account for 13 % and 16 %, respectively, of the monthly mean surface O3 in the UK, as the majority (71 %) of O3 originates from the hemispheric background. Hemispheric O3 contributes the most to concentrations in the north and the west of the UK with peaks in May, whereas European and UK contributions are most significant in the east, south-east, and London, i.e. the UK's most populated areas, intensifying towards June and July. Moreover, O3 from European sources is generally transported to the UK rather than produced in situ. It is demonstrated that more stringent emission controls over continental Europe, particularly in western Europe, would be necessary to improve the health-related metric MDA8 O3 above 50 and 60 ppbv. Emission controls over larger areas, such as the Northern Hemisphere, are instead required to lessen the impacts on ecosystems as quantified by the AOT40 metric.

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    Authors: Rowlinson, Matthew J.; Rap, Alexandru; Hamilton, Douglas S.; Pope, Richard J.; +7 Authors

    Tropospheric ozone concentrations are sensitive to natural emissions of precursor compounds. In contrast to existing assumptions, recent evidence indicates that terrestrial vegetation emissions in the pre-industrial era were larger than in the present day. We use a chemical transport model and a radiative transfer model to show that revised inventories of pre-industrial fire and biogenic emissions lead to an increase in simulated pre-industrial ozone concentrations, decreasing the estimated pre-industrial to present-day tropospheric ozone radiative forcing by up to 34 % (0.38 to 0.25 W m−2). We find that this change is sensitive to employing biomass burning and biogenic emissions inventories based on matching vegetation patterns, as the co-location of emission sources enhances the effect on ozone formation. Our forcing estimates are at the lower end of existing uncertainty range estimates (0.2–0.6 W m−2), without accounting for other sources of uncertainty. Thus, future work should focus on reassessing the uncertainty range of tropospheric ozone radiative forcing.

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    Authors: Clyne, Margot; Lamarque, Jean-Francois; Mills, Michael J.; Khodri, Myriam; +19 Authors

    As part of the Model Intercomparison Project on the climatic response to Volcanic forcing (VolMIP), several climate modeling centers performed a coordinated pre-study experiment with interactive stratospheric aerosol models simulating the volcanic aerosol cloud from an eruption resembling the 1815 Mt. Tambora eruption (VolMIP-Tambora ISA ensemble). The pre-study provided the ancillary ability to assess intermodel diversity in the radiative forcing for a large stratospheric-injecting equatorial eruption when the volcanic aerosol cloud is simulated interactively. An initial analysis of the VolMIP-Tambora ISA ensemble showed large disparities between models in the stratospheric global mean aerosol optical depth (AOD). In this study, we now show that stratospheric global mean AOD differences among the participating models are primarily due to differences in aerosol size, which we track here by effective radius. We identify specific physical and chemical processes that are missing in some models and/or parameterized differently between models, which are together causing the differences in effective radius. In particular, our analysis indicates that interactively tracking hydroxyl radical (OH) chemistry following a large volcanic injection of sulfur dioxide (SO2) is an important factor in allowing for the timescale for sulfate formation to be properly simulated. In addition, depending on the timescale of sulfate formation, there can be a large difference in effective radius and subsequently AOD that results from whether the SO2 is injected in a single model grid cell near the location of the volcanic eruption, or whether it is injected as a longitudinally averaged band around the Earth.

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    Authors: Stolzenburg, Dominik; Simon, Mario; Ranjithkumar, Ananth; Kürten, Andreas; +74 Authors

    In the present-day atmosphere, sulfuric acid is the most important vapour for aerosol particle formation and initial growth. However, the growth rates of nanoparticles (<10 nm) from sulfuric acid remain poorly measured. Therefore, the effect of stabilizing bases, the contribution of ions and the impact of attractive forces on molecular collisions are under debate. Here, we present precise growth rate measurements of uncharged sulfuric acid particles from 1.8 to 10 nm, performed under atmospheric conditions in the CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) CLOUD chamber. Our results show that the evaporation of sulfuric acid particles above 2 nm is negligible, and growth proceeds kinetically even at low ammonia concentrations. The experimental growth rates exceed the hard-sphere kinetic limit for the condensation of sulfuric acid. We demonstrate that this results from van der Waals forces between the vapour molecules and particles and disentangle it from charge–dipole interactions. The magnitude of the enhancement depends on the assumed particle hydration and collision kinetics but is increasingly important at smaller sizes, resulting in a steep rise in the observed growth rates with decreasing size. Including the experimental results in a global model, we find that the enhanced growth rate of sulfuric acid particles increases the predicted particle number concentrations in the upper free troposphere by more than 50 %.

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    Authors: Marinou, Eleni; Tesche, Matthias; Nenes, Athanasios; Ansmann, Albert; +12 Authors

    Aerosols that are efficient ice-nucleating particles (INPs) are crucial for the formation of cloud ice via heterogeneous nucleation in the atmosphere. The distribution of INPs on a large spatial scale and as a function of height determines their impact on clouds and climate. However, in situ measurements of INPs provide sparse coverage over space and time. A promising approach to address this gap is to retrieve INP concentration profiles by combining particle concentration profiles derived by lidar measurements with INP efficiency parameterizations for different freezing mechanisms (immersion freezing, deposition nucleation). Here, we assess the feasibility of this new method for both ground-based and spaceborne lidar measurements, using in situ observations collected with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and subsequently analyzed with the FRIDGE (FRankfurt Ice nucleation Deposition freezinG Experiment) INP counter from an experimental campaign at Cyprus in April 2016. Analyzing five case studies we calculated the cloud-relevant particle number concentrations using lidar measurements (n250,dry with an uncertainty of 20 % to 40 % and Sdry with an uncertainty of 30 % to 50 %), and we assessed the suitability of the different INP parameterizations with respect to the temperature range and the type of particles considered. Specifically, our analysis suggests that our calculations using the parameterization of Ullrich et al. (2017) (applicable for the temperature range −50 to −33 ∘C) agree within 1 order of magnitude with the in situ observations of nINP; thus, the parameterization of Ullrich et al. (2017) can efficiently address the deposition nucleation pathway in dust-dominated environments. Additionally, our calculations using the combination of the parameterizations of DeMott et al. (2015, 2010) (applicable for the temperature range −35 to −9 ∘C) agree within 2 orders of magnitude with the in situ observations of INP concentrations (nINP) and can thus efficiently address the immersion/condensation pathway of dust and nondust particles. The same conclusion is derived from the compilation of the parameterizations of DeMott et al. (2015) for dust and Ullrich et al. (2017) for soot. Peer reviewed

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    Authors: Kipling, Zak; Labbouz, Laurent; Stier, Philip;

    The interactions between aerosols and convective clouds represent some of the greatest uncertainties in the climate impact of aerosols in the atmosphere. A wide variety of mechanisms have been proposed by which aerosols may invigorate, suppress or change the properties of individual convective clouds, some of which can be reproduced in high-resolution limited-area models. However, there may also be mesoscale, regional or global adjustments which modulate or dampen such impacts which cannot be captured in the limited domain of such models. The Convective Cloud Field Model (CCFM) provides a mechanism to simulate a population of convective clouds, complete with microphysics and interactions between clouds, within each grid column at resolutions used for global climate modelling, so that a representation of the microphysical aerosol response within each parameterised cloud type is possible. Using CCFM within the global aerosol–climate model ECHAM–HAM, we demonstrate how the parameterised cloud field responds to the present-day anthropogenic aerosol perturbation in different regions. In particular, we show that in regions with strongly forced deep convection and/or significant aerosol effects via large-scale processes, the changes in the convective cloud field due to microphysical effects are rather small; however in a more weakly forced regime such as the Caribbean, where large-scale aerosol effects are small, a signature of convective invigoration does become apparent.

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    Authors: Bednarz, Ewa M.; Maycock, Amanda C.; Braesicke, Peter; Telford, Paul J.; +2 Authors

    The atmospheric response to the 11-year solar cycle is separated into the contributions from changes in direct radiative heating and photolysis rates using specially designed sensitivity simulations with the UM-UKCA (Unified Model coupled to the United Kingdom Chemistry and Aerosol model) chemistry–climate model. We perform a number of idealised time-slice experiments under perpetual solar maximum (SMAX) and minimum conditions (SMIN), and we find that contributions from changes in direct heating and photolysis rates are both important for determining the stratospheric shortwave heating, temperature and ozone responses to the amplitude of the 11-year solar cycle. The combined effects of the processes are found to be largely additive in the tropics but nonadditive in the Southern Hemisphere (SH) high latitudes during the dynamically active season. Our results indicate that, in contrast to the original mechanism proposed in the literature, the solar-induced changes in the horizontal shortwave heating rate gradients not only in autumn/early winter but throughout the dynamically active season are important for modulating the dynamical response to changes in solar forcing. In spring, these gradients are strongly influenced by the shortwave heating anomalies at higher southern latitudes, which are closely linked to the concurrent changes in ozone. In addition, our simulations indicate differences in the winter SH dynamical responses between the experiments. We suggest a couple of potential drivers of the simulated differences, i.e. the role of enhanced zonally asymmetric ozone heating brought about by the increased solar-induced ozone levels under SMAX and/or sensitivity of the polar dynamical response to the altitude of the anomalous radiative tendencies. All in all, our results suggest that solar-induced changes in ozone, both in the tropics/mid-latitudes and the polar regions, are important for modulating the SH dynamical response to the 11-year solar cycle. In addition, the markedly nonadditive character of the SH polar vortex response simulated in austral spring highlights the need for consistent model implementation of the solar cycle forcing in both the radiative heating and photolysis schemes.

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