Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 11, 11771-11808, 2011
© Author(s) 2011. This work is distributed
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This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP). Please refer to the corresponding final paper in ACP.
Physical and chemical properties of pollution aerosol particles transported from North America to Greenland as measured during the POLARCAT summer campaign
B. Quennehen1, A. Schwarzenboeck1, J. Schmale2, J. Schneider2, H. Sodemann3,*, A. Stohl3, G. Ancellet4, S. Crumeyrolle1, and K. S. Law4
1Laboratoire de Météorologie Physique, Université Blaise Pascal, CNRS (UMR 6016), Aubière, France
2Particle Chemistry Department, Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Mainz, Germany
3Norwegian Institute for Air Reasearch (NILU), Kjeller, Norway
4UPMC Univ. Paris 06; Université Versailles St-Quentin; CNRS/INSU, LATMOS-IPSL (UMR 8190), Paris, France
*now at: Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zürich, Switzerland

Abstract. Within the framework of the POLARCAT-France campaign, aerosol physical, chemical and optical properties over Greenland were measured onboard the French ATR-42 research aircraft. The Lagrangian particle dispersion model FLEXPART was used to determine air mass origins. The study focuses particularly on the characterization of air masses transported from the North American continent. Air masses that picked up emissions from Canadian and Alaskan boreal forest fires as well as from the cities on the American east coast were identified and selected for a detailed study. Measurements of CO concentrations, aerosol chemical composition, aerosol size distributions, aerosol volatile fractions and aerosol light absorption (mainly from black carbon) are used in order to study the relationship between CO enhancement, ageing of the air masses, aerosol particle concentrations and size distributions. Aerosol size distributions are in good agreement with previous studies, even though, wet scavenging potentially occurred along the pathway between the emission sources and Greenland leading to lower concentrations in the aerosol accumulation mode. The measured aerosol size distributions show a significant enhancement of Aitken mode particles. It is demonstrated that the Aitken mode is largely composed of black carbon, while the accumulation mode is more dominated by organics, as deduced from aerosol mass spectrometric AMS and aerosol volatility measurements. Overall, during the campaign rather small amounts of black carbon from the North American continent were transported towards Greenland. An important finding given the potential climate impacts of black carbon in the Arctic.

Citation: Quennehen, B., Schwarzenboeck, A., Schmale, J., Schneider, J., Sodemann, H., Stohl, A., Ancellet, G., Crumeyrolle, S., and Law, K. S.: Physical and chemical properties of pollution aerosol particles transported from North America to Greenland as measured during the POLARCAT summer campaign, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 11, 11771-11808, doi:10.5194/acpd-11-11771-2011, 2011.
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