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Open AccessArticle

Ice Nucleating Particle Concentrations Increase When Leaves Fall in Autumn

Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Basel, 4056 Basel, Switzerland
Institute of Soil Science and Agrochemistry, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, 630090 Novosibirsk, Russia
NILU—Norwegian Institute for Air Research, 2027 Kjeller, Norway
Laboratory for Air Pollution/Environmental Technology, Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa), 8600 Dübendorf, Switzerland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Atmosphere 2017, 8(10), 202;
Received: 25 September 2017 / Revised: 12 October 2017 / Accepted: 13 October 2017 / Published: 17 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Atmospheric Aerosol Composition and its Impact on Clouds)
PDF [2457 KB, uploaded 17 October 2017]


Ice nucleating particles active at −8 °C or warmer (INP−8) are produced by plants and by microorganisms living from and on them. Laboratory studies have shown that large numbers of INP−8 are produced by decaying leaves. At three widely dispersed locations in Northwestern Eurasia, we saw, from an analysis of PM10 filter samples, that seasonal median concentrations of INP−8 in the boundary layer doubled from summer to autumn. Concentrations of INP−8 increased in autumn soon after the normalized differential vegetation index had started to decrease. Whether the large-scale phenological event of leaf senescence and shedding in autumn has an impact on ice formation in clouds is a justified question. View Full-Text
Keywords: biological particles; seasonal pattern; land-atmosphere interactions biological particles; seasonal pattern; land-atmosphere interactions

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Conen, F.; Yakutin, M.V.; Yttri, K.E.; Hüglin, C. Ice Nucleating Particle Concentrations Increase When Leaves Fall in Autumn. Atmosphere 2017, 8, 202.

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