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Atmosphere 2015, 6(7), 942-959; doi:10.3390/atmos6070942

Case Study of Particle Number Fluxes and Size Distributions during Nucleation Events in Southeastern Italy in the Summer

1
Istituto di Scienze dell'Atmosfera e del Clima, ISAC-CNR, 73100 Lecce, Italy
2
Dipartimento di Matematica e Fisica, Università del Salento, 73100 Lecce, Italy
3
Istituto di Scienze dell'Atmosfera e del Clima, ISAC-CNR, 40129 Bologna, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Robert W. Talbot and Maria Kanakidou
Received: 30 March 2015 / Revised: 22 June 2015 / Accepted: 2 July 2015 / Published: 14 July 2015
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Abstract

Concentrations, size distributions and particle number vertical turbulent fluxes were measured by the eddy-covariance method at an urban background site in southeastern Italy during the summer. CO2/H2O concentrations and fluxes were also determined together with meteorological parameters. Time series show that particles could be divided into two size classes with negatively-correlated temporal trends in diurnal hours: nanoparticles (diameter Dp < 50 nm) and larger particles (Dp > 50 nm). Larger particles include part of the Aitken mode and the accumulation mode. Nanoparticles peaked in diurnal hours due to the presence of several days with nucleation events when particles Dp > 50 nm were at minimum concentrations. Nucleation increased diurnal total particle concentration by a factor of 2.5, reducing mean and median diameters from Dmean = 62.3 ± 1.2 nm and Dmedian = 29.1 ± 1.3 nm on non-event days to Dmean = 35.4 ± 0.6 nm and Dmedian = 15.5 ± 0.3 nm on event days. During nucleation events, particle deposition increased markedly (i.e., downward fluxes), but no significant changes in CO2 concentrations and fluxes were observed. This is compatible with new particle formation above the measurement height and a consequent net transport towards the surface. Correlation with meteorology shows that the formation of new particles is correlated with solar radiation and favored at high wind velocity. View Full-Text
Keywords: SMPS; particle flux; nucleation events; CO2/H2O fluxes; particle size distributions SMPS; particle flux; nucleation events; CO2/H2O fluxes; particle size distributions
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Conte, M.; Donateo, A.; Dinoi, A.; Belosi, F.; Contini, D. Case Study of Particle Number Fluxes and Size Distributions during Nucleation Events in Southeastern Italy in the Summer. Atmosphere 2015, 6, 942-959.

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