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Title: Recent advances in understanding secondary organic aerosol: Implications for global climate forcing: Advances in Secondary Organic Aerosol

Anthropogenic emissions and land use changes have modified atmospheric aerosol concentrations and size distributions over time. Understanding preindustrial conditions and changes in organic aerosol due to anthropogenic activities is important because these features (1) influence estimates of aerosol radiative forcing and (2) can confound estimates of the historical response of climate to increases in greenhouse gases. Secondary organic aerosol (SOA), formed in the atmosphere by oxidation of organic gases, represents a major fraction of global submicron-sized atmospheric organic aerosol. Over the past decade, significant advances in understanding SOA properties and formation mechanisms have occurred through measurements, yet current climate models typically do not comprehensively include all important processes. Our review summarizes some of the important developments during the past decade in understanding SOA formation. We also highlight the importance of some processes that influence the growth of SOA particles to sizes relevant for clouds and radiative forcing, including formation of extremely low volatility organics in the gas phase, acid-catalyzed multiphase chemistry of isoprene epoxydiols, particle-phase oligomerization, and physical properties such as volatility and viscosity. Several SOA processes highlighted in this review are complex and interdependent and have nonlinear effects on the properties, formation, and evolution of SOA. Current global modelsmore » neglect this complexity and nonlinearity and thus are less likely to accurately predict the climate forcing of SOA and project future climate sensitivity to greenhouse gases. Efforts are also needed to rank the most influential processes and nonlinear process-related interactions, so that these processes can be accurately represented in atmospheric chemistry-climate models.« less
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  1. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
  2. Univ. of California, Davis, CA (United States). Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering
  3. Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States). Dept. of Environmental Science, Policy and Management and Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering
  4. Univ. of California, Irvine, CA (United States). Dept. of Earth System Science
  5. Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO (United States). Cooperative Inst. for Research in Environmental Sciences, Dept. of Chemistry and Biochemistry
  6. Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
  7. Harvard Univ., Cambridge, MA (United States). School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Dept. of Earth and Planetary Sciences
  8. Georgia Inst. of Technology, Atlanta, GA (United States). School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences
  9. Univ. of Helsinki (Finland). Dept. of Physics
  10. Colorado State Univ., Fort Collins, CO (United States). Dept. of Atmospheric Science
  11. Lund Univ. (Sweden). Dept. of Physics
  12. California Inst. of Technology (CalTech), Pasadena, CA (United States). Division of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
  13. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland Washington USA
  14. Univ. of Washington, Seattle, WA (United States). Dept. of Atmospheric Sciences
  15. Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences and Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder Colorado USA
  16. Aerodyne Research, Inc., Billerica, MA (United States)
  17. Univ. of California, Davis, CA (United States). Dept. of Environmental Toxicology
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 8755-1209; R&D Project: 2016-BNL-EE630EECA-Budg; KP1701000
Grant/Contract Number:
SC0012704; AC05-76RL01830
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Reviews of Geophysics (1985)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Reviews of Geophysics (1985); Journal Volume: 55; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 8755-1209
American Geophysical Union (AGU)
Research Org:
Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), Upton, NY (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
Country of Publication:
United States
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1402338