Special Issue "Ice Nucleation in the Atmosphere"

A special issue of Atmosphere (ISSN 2073-4433).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 July 2018)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Hinrich Grothe

Institute of Materials Chemistry, Technische Universitaet Wien, Vienna, Austria
Website | E-Mail
Interests: nucleation; aging processes; low-temperature spectroscopy and microscopy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue aims to present an overview of our current understanding of atmospheric ice nucleation. Ice particles in the atmosphere contribute to the largest uncertainty in interpretations of the Earth’s changing energy budget. The large variability in number, size and shape of cirrus and mixed-phase cloud particles makes it difficult to understand and parameterize their microphysical and hence their radiative properties. Here, we call for contributions related to concentrations and ice activation properties of Ice Nucleating Particles (INP) in the atmosphere, as well as from laboratory and chamber studies. It is the aim to facilitate the exchange of knowledge in between the different approaches in this research field, that means we aim to gather contributions from all aspects: observations (ground based, airborne and space borne), simulations (process, regional and global), as well as radiative transfer and transport studies. Topics of interest are ice cloud formation, life cycle, coverage, microphysical and radiative properties, crystal shapes, sizes and variability of ice particles for mixed-phase as well as cirrus clouds.

Prof. Dr. Hinrich Grothe
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • ice nucleation mechanisms
  • ice nuclei
  • aging of ice nuclei
  • new instruments
  • surface chemistry
  • morphology

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Impact of Air Mass Conditions and Aerosol Properties on Ice Nucleating Particle Concentrations at the High Altitude Research Station Jungfraujoch
Atmosphere 2018, 9(9), 363; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9090363
Received: 29 June 2018 / Revised: 27 August 2018 / Accepted: 1 September 2018 / Published: 19 September 2018
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Abstract
Ice nucleation is the source of primary ice crystals in mixed-phase clouds. Only a small fraction of aerosols called ice nucleating particles (INPs) catalyze ice formation, with their nature and origin remaining unclear. In this study, we investigate potential predictor parameters of meteorological
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Ice nucleation is the source of primary ice crystals in mixed-phase clouds. Only a small fraction of aerosols called ice nucleating particles (INPs) catalyze ice formation, with their nature and origin remaining unclear. In this study, we investigate potential predictor parameters of meteorological conditions and aerosol properties for INP concentrations at mixed-phase cloud condition at 242 K. Measurements were conducted at the High Altitude Research Station Jungfraujoch (Switzerland, 3580 m a.s.l.), which is located predominantly in the free troposphere (FT) but can occasionally receive injections from the boundary layer (BLI). Measurements are taken during a long-term study of eight field campaigns, allowing for the first time an interannual (2014–2017) and seasonal (spring, summer, and winter) distinction of high-time-resolution INP measurements. We investigate ranked correlation coefficients between INP concentrations and meteorological parameters and aerosol properties. While a commonly used parameterization lacks in predicting the observed INP concentrations, the best INP predictor is the total available surface area of the aerosol particles, with no obvious seasonal trend in the relationship. Nevertheless, the predicting capability is less pronounced in the FT, which might be caused by ageing effects. Furthermore, there is some evidence of anthropogenic influence on INP concentrations during BLI. Our study contributes to an improved understanding of ice nucleation in the free troposphere, however, it also underlines that a knowledge gap of ice nucleation in such an environment exists. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ice Nucleation in the Atmosphere)
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Open AccessArticle Abundance of Biological Ice Nucleating Particles in the Mississippi and Its Major Tributaries
Atmosphere 2018, 9(8), 307; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9080307
Received: 10 July 2018 / Revised: 30 July 2018 / Accepted: 3 August 2018 / Published: 7 August 2018
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Abstract
Ice nucleating particles (INPs) are rare among atmospheric aerosols. However, through their ability to induce freezing of cloud droplets in cold clouds, they affect cloud lifetime, cloud albedo, and the efficiency and distribution of precipitation. While terrestrial sources of INPs are the focus
[...] Read more.
Ice nucleating particles (INPs) are rare among atmospheric aerosols. However, through their ability to induce freezing of cloud droplets in cold clouds, they affect cloud lifetime, cloud albedo, and the efficiency and distribution of precipitation. While terrestrial sources of INPs are the focus of much research, the potential of rivers and lakes to be significant INP reservoirs has been neglected. In the first survey of a major river system, surface waters from the Mississippi, Missouri, Platte, and Sweetwater Rivers, all draining east and south from the Great Divide in the United States of America (USA), were tested for their INP concentrations. The survey comprised 49 samples, taken approximately every 150–250 km along 90% of the Mississippi (from Natchez, MS to the source at Bemidji, MN), the full length of the Missouri, 90% of the North Platte, and all of the Sweetwater. Samples were analysed using the immersion freezing method. The highest freezing temperature varied between −4 and −6 °C, and the concentration of INPs active at −10 °C or warmer ranged from 87 to 47,000 mL−1. The average INP concentration at −10 °C was 4950 mL−1, almost four orders of magnitude greater than the numbers of INPs typically found active at this temperature in seawater. The majority of INPs (69 to >99%) were heat labile (deactivated by heating to 95 °C) and therefore likely to be biological. Although the surface area of rivers is limited, their significant concentrations of INPs suggest that freshwater emissions should be investigated for their potential impact on regional cloud processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ice Nucleation in the Atmosphere)
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Open AccessArticle Compositional and Mineralogical Effects on Ice Nucleation Activity of Volcanic Ash
Atmosphere 2018, 9(7), 238; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9070238
Received: 14 April 2018 / Revised: 17 June 2018 / Accepted: 18 June 2018 / Published: 22 June 2018
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Abstract
Volcanic ash produced during explosive eruptions may serve as ice nuclei in the atmosphere, contributing to the occurrence of volcanic lightning due to tribocharging from ice–ice or ice–ash collisions. Here, different ash samples were tested using deposition-mode and immersion-mode ice nucleation experiments. Results
[...] Read more.
Volcanic ash produced during explosive eruptions may serve as ice nuclei in the atmosphere, contributing to the occurrence of volcanic lightning due to tribocharging from ice–ice or ice–ash collisions. Here, different ash samples were tested using deposition-mode and immersion-mode ice nucleation experiments. Results show that bulk composition and mineral abundance have no measurable effect on depositional freezing at the temperatures tested, as all samples have similar ice saturation ratios. In the immersion mode, there is a strong positive correlation between K2O content and ice nucleation site density at −25 °C and a strong negative correlation between MnO and TiO2 content at temperatures from −35 to −30 °C. The most efficient sample in the immersion mode has the highest surface area, smallest average grain size, highest K2O content, and lowest MnO content. These results indicate that although ash abundance—which creates more available surface area for nucleation—has a significant effect on immersion-mode freezing, composition may also contribute. Consequently, highly explosive eruptions of compositionally evolved magmas create the necessary parameters to promote ice nucleation on grain surfaces, which permits tribocharging due to ice–ice or ice–ash collisions, and contribute to the frequent occurrence of volcanic lightning within the eruptive column and plume during these events. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ice Nucleation in the Atmosphere)
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Open AccessArticle Freezing on a Chip—A New Approach to Determine Heterogeneous Ice Nucleation of Micrometer-Sized Water Droplets
Atmosphere 2018, 9(4), 140; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9040140
Received: 23 February 2018 / Revised: 20 March 2018 / Accepted: 7 April 2018 / Published: 10 April 2018
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Abstract
We are presenting a new approach to analyze the freezing behavior of aqueous droplets containing ice nucleating particles. The freezing chip consists of an etched and sputtered (15 × 15 × 1) mm gold-plated silicon or pure gold chip, enabling the formation of
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We are presenting a new approach to analyze the freezing behavior of aqueous droplets containing ice nucleating particles. The freezing chip consists of an etched and sputtered (15 × 15 × 1) mm gold-plated silicon or pure gold chip, enabling the formation of droplets with defined diameters between 20 and 80 µm. Several applications like an automated process control and an automated image evaluation were implemented to improve the quality of heterogeneous freezing experiments. To show the functionality of the setup, we compared freezing temperatures of aqueous droplets containing ice nucleating particles (i.e., microcline, birch pollen washing water, juniper pollen, and Snomax® solution) measured with our setup, with literature data. The ice nucleation active surface/mass site density (ns/m) of microcline, juniper pollen, and birch pollen washing water are shown to be in good agreement with literature data. Minor variations can be explained by slight differences in composition and droplet generation technique. The nm values of Snomax® differ by up to one order of magnitude at higher subzero temperatures when compared with fresh samples but are in agreement when compared with reported data of aged Snomax® samples. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ice Nucleation in the Atmosphere)
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