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Title: Development of an aerosol microphysical module: Aerosol Two-dimensional bin module for foRmation and Aging Simulation (ATRAS)

Number concentrations, size distributions, and mixing states of aerosols are essential parameters for accurate estimation of aerosol direct and indirect effects. In this study, we developed an aerosol module, designated Aerosol Two-dimensional bin module for foRmation and Aging Simulation (ATRAS), that can represent these parameters explicitly by considering new particle formation (NPF), black carbon (BC) aging, and secondary organic aerosol (SOA) processes. A two-dimensional bin representation is used for particles with dry diameters from 40 nm to 10 µm to resolve both aerosol size (12 bins) and BC mixing state (10 bins) for a total of 120 bins. The particles with diameters from 1 to 40 nm are resolved using an additional 8 size bins to calculate NPF. The ATRAS module was implemented in the WRF-chem model and applied to examine the sensitivity of simulated mass, number, size distributions, and optical and radiative parameters of aerosols to NPF, BC aging and SOA processes over East Asia during the spring of 2009. BC absorption enhancement by coating materials was about 50% over East Asia during the spring, and the contribution of SOA processes to the absorption enhancement was estimated to be 10 – 20% over northern East Asia and 20 –more » 35% over southern East Asia. A clear north-south contrast was also found between the impacts of NPF and SOA processes on cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) concentrations: NPF increased CCN concentrations at higher supersaturations (smaller particles) over northern East Asia, whereas SOA increased CCN concentrations at lower supersaturations (larger particles) over southern East Asia. Application of ATRAS to East Asia also showed that the impact of each process on each optical and radiative parameter depended strongly on the process and the parameter in question. The module can be used in the future as a benchmark model to evaluate the accuracy of simpler aerosol models and examine interactions between NPF, BC aging, and SOA processes under different meteorological conditions and emissions.« less
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Journal Article
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Journal Name: Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 14(18):10315-10331
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
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Country of Publication:
United States