Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2022-605
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2022-605
 
15 Sep 2022
15 Sep 2022
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Influence of air mass origin on microphysical properties of low-level clouds in a subarctic environment

Konstantinos Matthaios Doulgeris1, Ville Vakkari1,2, Ewan J. O'Connor1, Veli-Matti Kerminen4, Heikki Lihavainen1,3, and David Brus1 Konstantinos Matthaios Doulgeris et al.
  • 1Finnish Meteorological Institute, Erik Palménin aukio 1, P.O. Box 503, FIN-00100 Helsinki, Finland
  • 2Atmospheric Chemistry Research Group, Chemical Resource Beneficiation, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa
  • 3Svalbard Integrated Arctic Earth Observing System (SIOS), SIOS Knowledge Centre, Svalbard Science Centre, P.O. Box 156, 9171 Longyearbyen, Norway
  • 4Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research/Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland

Abstract. In this work, an analysis was performed to investigate how different long-range transport air masses can affect the occurrence and the microphysical properties of low-level clouds in a clean subarctic environment. The cloud measurements comprised in-situ and ground-based and were conducted during eight Pallas Cloud Experiments (PaCE) held in the autumn between 2004 and 2019. Each PaCE was carried out at the Pallas Atmosphere – Ecosystem Supersite, located in the Finnish subarctic region. Two cloud spectrometer ground setups were installed on the roof of the station to measure cloud microphysical properties: the Cloud, Aerosol and Precipitation Spectrometer probe (CAPS) and the Forward Scattering Spectrometer Probe (FSSP). Air mass histories were analyzed using the Lagrangian particle dispersion model FLEXPART in order to investigate the differences between five distinct source regions (Arctic, Eastern, Southern, Western and Local). The results showed that there was a connection between the microphysical properties of the clouds we sampled during PaCEs and the air mass source region. The occurrence of clouds at the measuring station was mainly connected with air masses coming from the continental regions. Higher values of cloud droplet number concentrations (Nc) were related to air masses coming from the Southern and Eastern regions (continental), whereas the lowest values of Nc were related to Arctic and Western air masses (marine). In addition, the marine air masses were characterized by larger cloud droplets (median volume diameter approximately from 15 to 20 µm), in comparison to continental air masses that were mainly characterized by cloud droplets with median volume diameters of approximately from 8 to 12 µm. Finally, there was an indication that cloud droplets were more prone to grow in warm liquid clouds.

Konstantinos Matthaios Doulgeris et al.

Status: open (until 27 Oct 2022)

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Konstantinos Matthaios Doulgeris et al.

Konstantinos Matthaios Doulgeris et al.

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Short summary
We investigated how different long-range transport air masses can affect the microphysical properties of low-level clouds in a clean subarctic environment. A connection was revealed. Higher values of cloud droplet number concentrations were related to continental air masses whereas the lowest values of number concentrations were related marine air masses. Marine air masses were characterized by larger cloud droplets. Cloud droplets were more prone to grow in liquid clouds in warmer air.
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