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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.

  11 Sep 2020

11 Sep 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Measurement report: Cloud Processes and the Transport of Biological Emissions Regulate Southern Ocean Particle and Cloud Condensation Nuclei Concentrations

Kevin J. Sanchez1,a,b, Gregory C. Roberts1,2, Georges Saliba1, Lynn M. Russell1, Cynthia Twohy3, Michael J. Reeves4, Ruhi S. Humphries5, Melita D. Keywood5, Jason P. Ward5, and Ian M. McRobert6 Kevin J. Sanchez et al.
  • 1Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, CA, USA
  • 2Centre National de Recherches Météorologiques, Météo-France & CNRS UMR3589, Toulouse, France
  • 3NorthWest Research Associates, Redmond, WA, USA
  • 4National Centerfor Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO, USA
  • 5Climate Science Centre, CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere, Aspendale, Australia
  • 6Engineering and Technology Program, CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere, Hobart, Australia
  • anow at: Universities Space Research Association, Columbia, MD, USA
  • bnow at: NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA, USA

Abstract. Long-range transport of biogenic emissions from the coast of Antarctica, precipitation scavenging, and cloud processing are the main processes that influence the observed variability in Southern Ocean (SO) marine boundary layer (MBL) condensation nuclei (CN) and cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) concentrations during the austral summer. Airborne particle measurements on the HIAPER GV from north-south transects between Hobart, Tasmania and 62° S during the Southern Ocean Clouds, Radiation Aerosol Transport Experimental Study (SOCRATES) were separated into four regimes comprising combinations of high and low concentrations of CCN and CN. In 5-day HYSPLIT back trajectories, air parcels with elevated CCN concentrations were almost always shown to have crossed the Antarctic coast, a location with elevated phytoplankton emissions relative to the rest of the SO. The presence of high CCN concentrations was also consistent with high cloud fractions over their trajectory, suggesting there was substantial growth of biogenically formed particles through cloud processing. Cases with low cloud fraction, due to the presence of cumulus clouds, had high CN concentrations, consistent with previously reported new particle formation in cumulus outflow regions. Measurements associated with elevated precipitation during the previous 1.5-days of their trajectory had low CCN concentrations indicating CCN were effectively scavenged by precipitation. A course-mode fitting algorithm was used to determine the primary marine aerosol (PMA) contribution which accounted for < 20 % of CCN (at 0.3 % supersaturation) and cloud droplet number concentrations. Vertical profiles of CN and large particle concentrations (Dp > 0.07 µm) indicated that particle formation occurs more frequently above the MBL; however, the growth of recently formed particles typically occurs in the MBL, consistent with cloud processing and the condensation of volatile compound oxidation products.

CCN measurements on the R/V Investigator as part of the second Clouds, Aerosols, Precipitation, Radiation and atmospheric Composition Over the southeRn Ocean (CAPRICORN-2) campaign were also conducted during the same period as the SOCRATES study. The R/V Investigator observed elevated CCN concentrations near Australia, likely due to continental and coastal biogenic emissions. The Antarctic coastal source of CCN from the south as well as CCN sources from the mid-latitudes create a latitudinal gradient in CCN concentration with an observed minimum in the SO between 55° S and 60° S. The SOCRATES airborne measurements are not influenced by Australian continental emissions, but still show evidence of elevated CCN concentrations to the south of 60° S, consistent with biogenic coastal emissions. In addition, a latitudinal gradient in the particle composition is observed; more hygroscopic particles to the north, consistent with a greater fraction of sea salt from PMA, and more sulfate and organic particles to the south, which are likely from biogenic sources in coastal Antarctica.

Kevin J. Sanchez et al.

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Status: open (until 06 Nov 2020)
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Kevin J. Sanchez et al.

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SOCRATES CCN measurements Kevin J. Sanchez and Gregory C. Roberts

Kevin J. Sanchez et al.


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Publications Copernicus
Short summary
Measurements of particles and their properties were made from aircraft over the Southern Ocean. Aerosol transported from the Antarctic coast is shown to greatly enhances the particle concentrations over the Southern Ocean. The occurrence of precipitation was shown to be associated with the lowest particle concentrations over the Southern Ocean. These particles are important due to their ability to enhance cloud droplet concentrations, resulting in more sunlight being reflected by the clouds.
Measurements of particles and their properties were made from aircraft over the Southern Ocean....