Articles | Volume 22, issue 2
Research article
31 Jan 2022
Research article |  | 31 Jan 2022

Secondary organic aerosol and organic nitrogen yields from the nitrate radical (NO3) oxidation of alpha-pinene from various RO2 fates

Kelvin H. Bates, Guy J. P. Burke, James D. Cope, and Tran B. Nguyen

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Cited articles

Bates, K. H.: Experiment Set: a-pinene nighttime chemistry, ICARUS [data set], available at: (last accessed: 24 January 2022), 2021. 
Bell, D. M., Wu, C., Bertrand, A., Graham, E., Schoonbaert, J., Giannoukos, S., Baltensperger, U., Prevot, A. S. H., Riipinen, I., El Haddad, I., and Mohr, C.: Particle-phase processing of α-pinene NO3 secondary organic aerosol in the dark, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss. [preprint],, in review, 2021. 
Berndt, T., Scholz, W., Mentler, B., Fischer, L., Herrmann, H., Kulmala, M., and Hansel, A.: Accretion product formation from self- and cross-reactions of RO2 radicals in the atmosphere, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 57, 3820–3824,, 2018a. 
Berndt, T., Mentler, B., Scholz, W., Fischer, L., Herrmann, H., Kulmala, M., and Hansel, A.: Accretion Product Formation from Ozonolysis and OH Radical Reaction of α-Pinene: Mechanistic Insight and the Influence of Isoprene and Ethylene, Environ. Sci. Technol., 52, 11069–11077,, 2018b. 
Short summary
The main nighttime sink of α-pinene, a hydrocarbon abundantly emitted by plants, is reaction with NO3 to form nitrooxy peroxy radicals (nRO2). Using uniquely designed chamber experiments, we show that this reaction is a major source of organic aerosol when nRO2 reacts with other nRO2 and forms a nitrooxy hydroperoxide when nRO2 reacts with HO2. Under ambient conditions these pathways are key loss processes of atmospheric reactive nitrogen in areas with mixed biogenic and anthropogenic influence.
Final-revised paper