Secondary sulfate is internally mixed with sea spray aerosol and organic aerosol in the winter Arctic

Kirpes, Rachel M.; Bondy, Amy L.; Bonanno, Daniel; Moffet, Ryan C.; Wang, Bingbing; Laskin, Alexander; Ault, Andrew P.; Pratt, Kerri A.

Few measurements of aerosol chemical composition have been made during the winter–spring transition (following polar sunrise) to constrain Arctic aerosol–cloud–climate feedbacks. Herein, we report the first measurements of individual particle chemical composition near Utqiaġvik (Barrow), Alaska, in winter (seven sample days in January and February 2014). Individual particles were analyzed by computer-controlled scanning electron microscopy with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (CCSEM-EDX, 24 847 particles), Raman microspectroscopy (300 particles), and scanning transmission X-ray microscopy with near-edge X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy (STXM-NEXAFS, 290 particles). Sea spray aerosol (SSA) was observed in all samples, with fresh and aged SSA comprising 99 %, by number, of 2.5–7.5 inline-formulaµm diameter particles, 65–95 % from 0.5–2.5 inline-formulaµm, and 50–60 % from 0.1–0.5 inline-formulaµm, indicating SSA is the dominant contributor to accumulation and coarse-mode aerosol during the winter. The aged SSA particles were characterized by reduced chlorine content with 94 %, by number, internally mixed with secondary sulfate (39 %, by number, internally mixed with both nitrate and sulfate), indicative of multiphase aging reactions during transport. There was a large number fraction (40 % of 1.0–4.0 inline-formulaµm diameter particles) of aged SSA during periods when particles were transported from near Prudhoe Bay, consistent with pollutant emissions from the oil fields participating in atmospheric processing of aerosol particles. Organic carbon and sulfate particles were observed in all samples and comprised 40–50 %, by number, of 0.1–0.4 inline-formulaµm diameter particles, indicative of Arctic haze influence. Soot was internally mixed with organic and sulfate components. All sulfate was mixed with organic carbon or SSA particles. Therefore, aerosol sources in the Alaskan Arctic and resulting aerosol chemical mixing states need to be considered when predicting aerosol climate effects, particularly cloud formation, in the winter Arctic.

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Kirpes, Rachel M. / Bondy, Amy L. / Bonanno, Daniel / et al: Secondary sulfate is internally mixed with sea spray aerosol and organic aerosol in the winter Arctic. 2018. Copernicus Publications.

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