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© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  02 Jul 2020

02 Jul 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Condensation and immersion freezing Ice Nucleating Particle measurements at Ny-Ålesund (Svalbard) during 2018: evidence of multiple source contribution

Matteo Rinaldi1, Naruki Hiranuma2, Gianni Santachiara1, Mauro Mazzola3, Karam Mansour1,4,5, Marco Paglione1, Cheyanne A. Rodriguez2, Rita Traversi6, Silvia Becagli6, David M. Cappelletti7, and Franco Belosi1 Matteo Rinaldi et al.
  • 1Institute of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate (ISAC), National Research Council (CNR), 40129 Bologna, Italy
  • 2Department of Life, Earth and Environmental Sciences, West Texas A&M University, Canyon, TX, USA
  • 3Institute of Polar Sciences (ISP), National Research Council (CNR), 40129 Bologna, Italy
  • 4Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Bologna, 40127 Bologna, Italy
  • 5Department of Oceanography, Faculty of Science, University of Alexandria, 21511 Alexandria, Egypt
  • 6Department of Chemistry “Ugo Schiff”, University of Florence, 50019 Florence, Italy
  • 7Dipartimento di Chimica, Biologia e Biotecnologie, Università degli Studi di Perugia, 06123 Perugia, Italy

Abstract. The current inadequate understanding of ice nucleating particle (INP) sources in the Arctic region affects the uncertainty in global radiative budgets and in regional climate predictions. In this study, we present atmospheric INP concentrations by offline analyses on samples collected at ground level in Ny-Ålesund (Svalbard), in spring and summer 2018. The ice nucleation properties of the samples were characterized by means of two offline instruments: the Dynamic Filter Processing Chamber (DFPC), detecting condensation freezing INPs, and the West Texas Cryogenic Refrigerator Applied to Freezing Test system (WT-CRAFT), measuring INPs by immersion freezing.

Both measurements agreed within an order of magnitude although with some notable offset. INP concentration measured by DFPC ranged 33–185 (median 88), 5–107 (50) and 3–66 (20) m−3, for T = −22, −18 and −15 °C, respectively, while at the same activation temperatures WT-CRAFT measured 3–199 (26), 1–34 (6) and 1–4 (2) m−3, with an offset apparently dependent on the INP activation temperature. This observation may indicate a different sensitivity of Arctic INPs to different ice nucleation modes, even though a contribution from measurement and/or sampling uncertainties cannot be ruled out.

An increase in the coarse INP fraction was observed from spring to summer, particularly at the warmest temperature (up to ~ 70 % at −15 °C). This suggests a non-negligible contribution from local sources of biogenic aerosol particles. This conclusion is also supported by the INP temperature spectra, showing ice-forming activity at temperatures higher than −15 °C. Contrary to recent works (e.g., INP measurements from Ny-Ålesund in 2012), our results do not show a sharp spring-to-summer increase of the INP concentration, with distinct behaviors for particles active in different temperature ranges. This likely indicates that the inter-annual variability of conditions affecting the INP emission by local sources may be wider than previously considered and suggests a complex interplay between INP sources. This demonstrate the necessity of further data coverage.

Analysis of INP concentrations, active site density, low-travelling back-trajectories (< 500 m) and ground conditions during the air mass passage suggest that the summertime INP population may be contributed both by terrestrial and marine sources. Air masses in contact with snow-free land had higher INP concentrations, likely reflecting the higher nucleation ability of terrestrial particles. Outside the major terrestrial inputs, the INP population was likely regulated by marine INPs emitted from the sea surface. Evidence of the relation between background INP concentration and the patterns of marine biological activity have been provided by investigating its spatio-temporal correlation with satellite retrieved Chlorophyll-a fields and by the Concentration Weighted Trajectory (CWT) model. The results suggest that sources of INPs may be located both in the seawaters surrounding the Svalbard archipelago and/or as far as Greenland and Iceland.

Matteo Rinaldi et al.

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Data sets

Offline INP measurements at Ny-Ålesund (Svalbard) in 2018 M. Rinaldi, N. Hiranuma, G. Santachiara, M. Mazzola, and F. Belosi

Matteo Rinaldi et al.


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Publications Copernicus
Short summary
This work contributes to fill the present gap of Ice Nucleating Particle (INP) observations in the Arctic, reporting INP concentrations measured at Ny-Ålesund (Svalbard) during spring and summer 2018, by two offline quantification techniques. The lack of a clear concentration seasonal trend, in contrast to previous works, evidences an important interannual variability of Arctic INP sources, which may be both terrestrial and marine, outside the Arctic Haze period.
This work contributes to fill the present gap of Ice Nucleating Particle (INP) observations in...