Ocean-atmosphere transfer of organic, biological and toxic aerosols

Project leader

Funding source

Formas - The Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning

Project Details

Start date: 01/01/2005
End date: 31/12/2007
Funding: 3260000 SEK


Aerosol particles are ejected into the atmosphere when bubbles burst in the ocean surface white caps. These particles consist of sea salt and water, but also of organic compounds (natural and anthropogenic) and biological particles (algae and bacteria). The understanding of the primary marine aerosol source is incomplete and it is not well quantified. This is in particularly true for the organic and biological components. The aerosol formation by bubble bursting will be simulated in the laboratory at several marine field stations from the brackish and polluted Baltic Sea over the saline North Sea to the less polluted Norwegian Sea using local seawater from each station. The resulting aerosol will be characterised by aerosol physical measurements including aerosol number size distributions and chemical sampling for analysis of the total organic carbon, selected toxic organics of anthropogenic origin (PAH and PBDEs), and bacteria concentration and species. The data will be combined with in situ aerosol fluxes measured with the eddy correlation method within a parallel project. With these data, we will challenge the main project objective: to improve the understanding of this source process, to quantify the aerosol emissions, transfer rate and enrichment factors, and possibly to parameterise the source fluxes for each aerosol fraction. These results will help improve (through model applications) the estimates of the health and climate effects of the primary marine aerosol.

Last updated on 2017-24-03 at 12:53