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Aerosol hygroscopicity and cloud droplet activation of extracts of filters from...

Carrico, C. M., M. D. Petters, S. M. Kreidenweis, J. L. Collett, G. Engling, and W. C. Malm (2008), Aerosol hygroscopicity and cloud droplet activation of extracts of filters from biomass burning experiments, J. Geophys. Res., 113, D08206, doi:10.1029/2007JD009274.

In this laboratory closure study, we compare sub- and supersaturated water uptake properties for aerosol particles possessing a range of hygroscopicity. Measurements for water sub-saturated conditions used a hygroscopic tandem differential mobility analyzer (HTDMA). Simultaneously, measurements of particle critical supersaturation were conducted on the same sample stream with a continuous flow cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) counter. For these experiments, we used filter-collected samples of biomass smoke generated in the combustion of two common wildland fire fuels, western sagebrush and Alaskan duff core. Extractions of separate sections of the filter were performed using two solvents, ultrapure water and methanol. The extracts were subsequently atomized, producing aerosols having a range of hygroscopic responses. HTDMA and CCN measurements were fit to a single-parameter model of water uptake, in which the fit parameter is denoted k, the hygroscopicity parameter. Here, for the four extracts we observed mean values of the hygroscopicity parameter of 0.06 < k < 0.30, similar to the range found previously for numerous pure organic compounds. Particles generated from the aqueous extracts of the filters had consistently larger k than methanol extracts, while western sagebrush extract aerosols k exceeded those from Alaskan duff core. HTDMAand CCN-derived values of k for each experiment agreed within approximately 20%. Applicability of the k-parameterization to other multicomponent aerosols relevant to the atmosphere remains to be tested.

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Radiation Science Program (RSP)