Oxalic acid as a heterogeneous ice nucleus in the upper troposphere and its indirect aerosol effect

B. Zobrist, C. Marcolli, T. Koop, B. P. Luo, D. M. Murphy, U. Lohmann, A. A. Zardini, U. K. Krieger, T. Corti, D. J. Cziczo, Stephan Andreas Fueglistaler, P. K. Hudson, D. S. Thomson, T. Peter

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Abstract

Heterogeneous ice freezing points of aqueous solutions containing various immersed solid dicarboxylic acids (oxalic, adipic, succinic, phthalic and fumaric) have been measured with a differential scanning calorimeter. The results show that only the dihydrate of oxalic acid (OAD) acts as a heterogeneous ice nucleus, with an increase in freezing temperature between 2 and 5 K depending on solution composition. In several field campaigns, oxalic acid enriched particles have been detected in the upper troposphere with single particle aerosol mass spectrometry. Simulations with a microphysical box model indicate that the presence of OAD may reduce the ice particle number density in cirrus clouds by up to ∼50% when compared to exclusively homogeneous cirrus formation without OAD. Using the ECHAM4 climate model we estimate the global net radiative effect caused by this heterogeneous freezing to result in a cooling as high as -0.3 Wm-2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3115-3129
Number of pages15
JournalAtmospheric Chemistry and Physics
Volume6
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Atmospheric Science

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    Zobrist, B., Marcolli, C., Koop, T., Luo, B. P., Murphy, D. M., Lohmann, U., Zardini, A. A., Krieger, U. K., Corti, T., Cziczo, D. J., Fueglistaler, S. A., Hudson, P. K., Thomson, D. S., & Peter, T. (2006). Oxalic acid as a heterogeneous ice nucleus in the upper troposphere and its indirect aerosol effect. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 6(10), 3115-3129. https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-6-3115-2006