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Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-202
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2020-202
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  21 Apr 2020

21 Apr 2020

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A revised version of this preprint was accepted for the journal ACP.

Heterogeneous nucleation of water vapor on different types of black carbon particles

Ari Laaksonen1,2, Jussi Malila3, and Athanasios Nenes4,5 Ari Laaksonen et al.
  • 1Finnish Meteorological Institute, 00101 Helsinki, Finland
  • 2Department of Applied Physics, University of Eastern Finland, 70211 Kuopio, Finland
  • 3Nano and Molecular Systems Research Unit, 90014 University of Oulu, Finland
  • 4Laboratory of Atmospheric Processes and their Impacts, School of Architecture, Civil &Environmental Engineering, École Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, 1015, Lausanne, Switzerland
  • 5Institute of Chemical Engineering Sciences, Foundation for Research and Technology Hellas (FORTH/ICE-HT), 26504, Patras, Greece

Abstract. Heterogeneous nucleation of water vapor on insoluble particles affects cloud formation, precipitation, the hydrological cycle and climate. Despite its importance, heterogeneous nucleation remains a poorly understood phenomenon that relies heavily on empirical information for its quantitative description. Here, we examine heterogeneous nucleation of water vapor on and cloud drop activation of different types of soots, both pure black carbon particles, and black carbon particles mixed with secondary organic matter. We show that the recently developed adsorption nucleation theory quantitatively predicts the nucleation of water and droplet formation upon particles of the various soot types. A surprising consequence of this new understanding is that, with sufficient adsorption site density, soot particles can activate into cloud droplets – even when completely lacking any soluble material.

Ari Laaksonen et al.

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Ari Laaksonen et al.

Ari Laaksonen et al.

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Latest update: 27 Sep 2020
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Short summary
Aerosol particles containing black carbon are ubiquitos in the atmosphere, and originate from combustion processes. We examine their capability to act as condensation centers for water vapor. We make use of published experimental data sets for different types of black carbon particles, ranging from very pure particles to particles that contain both black carbon and water soluble organic matter, and show that a recently developed theory reproduces most of the experimental results.
Aerosol particles containing black carbon are ubiquitos in the atmosphere, and originate from...
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