Next Article in Journal
Spatial Variability in Years of Abrupt Seasonal Temperature Changes and Warming (Cooling) Hiatuses in China from 1951–2018 and the Variation Trends before and after These Years
Next Article in Special Issue
Pollution Transport Patterns Obtained Through Generalized Lagrangian Coherent Structures
Previous Article in Journal
IEQ Field Investigation in High-Performance, Urban Elementary Schools
Previous Article in Special Issue
A New Geochemical Method for Determining the Sources of Atmospheric Particles: A Case Study from Gannan, Northeast China

Scavenging of Sub-Micron to Micron-Sized Microbial Aerosols during Simulated Rainfall

Department of Microbiology and Cell Science, Biodiversity Institute, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32603, USA
School of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA 24061-0390, USA
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA 24061-0246, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Atmosphere 2020, 11(1), 80;
Received: 9 December 2019 / Revised: 31 December 2019 / Accepted: 3 January 2020 / Published: 9 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Emissions, Transport and Fate of Pollutants in the Atmosphere)
The processes removing aerosols from the atmosphere during rainfall are generically referred to as scavenging. Scavenging influences aerosol distributions in the atmosphere, with consequent effects on cloud properties, radiative forcing, and human health. In this study, we investigated the below-cloud scavenging process, specifically focusing on the scavenging of 0.2 to 2 µm-sized microbial aerosols by populations of water drops with average diameters of 3.0 and 3.6 mm. Rainfall was simulated in convective boundary layer air masses by dispensing the water drops from a 55 m bridge and collecting them at ground level. Particles and microbial cells scavenged by the water drops were visualized, enumerated, and sized using scanning electron and epifluorescence microscopy. Aerosolized particles and DNA-containing microbial cells of 2 µm diameter were scavenged at efficiencies similar to those reported previously in empirical studies; however, the efficiencies derived for smaller aerosols were significantly higher (one to three orders of magnitude) than those predicted by microphysical modeling. Application of the derived scavenging efficiencies to cell data from rainfall implies that, on average, approximately 50 to 70% of the 1 µm microbial cells in the precipitation originated from within the cloud. Further study of submicron to micron-sized aerosol scavenging over a broader raindrop size distribution would improve fundamental understanding of the scavenging process and the capacity to estimate (bio)aerosol abundances in the source cloud through analysis of rainfall. View Full-Text
Keywords: rain scavenging; aerosols; bioaerosols; wet deposition rain scavenging; aerosols; bioaerosols; wet deposition
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Moore, R.A.; Hanlon, R.; Powers, C.; Schmale, D.G., III; Christner, B.C. Scavenging of Sub-Micron to Micron-Sized Microbial Aerosols during Simulated Rainfall. Atmosphere 2020, 11, 80.

AMA Style

Moore RA, Hanlon R, Powers C, Schmale DG III, Christner BC. Scavenging of Sub-Micron to Micron-Sized Microbial Aerosols during Simulated Rainfall. Atmosphere. 2020; 11(1):80.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Moore, Rachel A., Regina Hanlon, Craig Powers, David G. Schmale III, and Brent C. Christner. 2020. "Scavenging of Sub-Micron to Micron-Sized Microbial Aerosols during Simulated Rainfall" Atmosphere 11, no. 1: 80.

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

Back to TopTop