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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-859
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-859
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 01 Oct 2019

Submitted as: research article | 01 Oct 2019

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This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).

Influence of vessel characteristics and atmospheric processes on the gas and particle phase of ship emission plumes: In-situ measurements in the Mediterranean Sea and around the Arabian Peninsula

Siddika Celik1, Frank Drewnick1, Friederike Fachinger1, James Brooks2, Eoghan Darbyshire2, Hugh Coe2, Jean-Daniel Paris3, Philipp G. Eger4, Jan Schuladen4, Ivan Tadic4, Nils Friedrich4, Dirk Dienhart4, Bettina Hottmann4, Horst Fischer4, John N. Crowley4, Hartwig Harder4, and Stephan Borrmann1,5 Siddika Celik et al.
  • 1Particle Chemistry Department, Max-Planck-Institute for Chemistry, Mainz, 55128, Germany
  • 2Centre for Atmospheric Science, University of Manchester, Manchester, M13 9PL, UK
  • 3Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement, CEA-CNRS-UVSQ, Gif-sur-Yvette, 91191, France
  • 4Atmospheric Chemistry Department, Max-Planck-Institute for Chemistry, Mainz, 55128, Germany
  • 5Institute for Atmospheric Physics, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Mainz, 55128, Germany

Abstract. 252 emission plumes of ships operating in the Mediterranean Sea and around the Arabian Peninsula were investigated using a comprehensive dataset of gas and submicron particle phase properties measured during the two-month shipborne AQABA field campaign in summer 2017. The post-measurement identification of the corresponding ship emission events in the measured data included the determination of the plume sources (up to 38 km away) as well as of the plume ages (up to 115 min) and was based on commercially available historical records of the Automatic Identification System. The dispersion lifetime of chemically inert CO2 in the ship emission plumes was determined as (70 ± 15) min, resulting in levels indistinguishable from the marine background after (260 ± 60) min. Emission factors (EFs) as quantities that are independent of plume dilution were calculated and used for the investigation of influences on ship emission plumes caused by ship characteristics and the combustion process as well as by atmospheric processes during the early stage of exhaust release and during plume aging. Combustion efficiency and therefore emission factors of black carbon and NOx were identified to depend mostly on the vessel speed and gross tonnage. Moreover, larger ships, associated with higher engine power were found to use fuel with higher sulfur content and have higher gas phase SO2, particulate sulfate, particulate organics and particulate matter EFs. Despite the independence of EFs on dilution, significant influence of the ambient wind speed on the particle number and mass EFs was observed that can be traced back to enhanced particle coagulation in case of slower dilution and suppressed vapor condensation on particles in case of faster dilution of the emission plume. Atmospheric reactions and processes in ship emission plumes were investigated that include NOx and O3 chemistry, gas-to-particle conversion of NOx and SO2 and the neutralization of acids in the particle phase through the uptake of ambient gas phase ammonia, the latter two of which cause the inorganic particulate content to increase and the organic fraction to decrease with increasing plume age. The results enable identification of the most important influences on (or processes in) ship emission plumes and to describe those quantitatively by parameterizations, which could be used for further refinement of atmospheric models.

Siddika Celik et al.
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Status: open (until 26 Nov 2019)
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Short summary
252 emission plumes of ships operating in the Mediterranean Sea and around the Arabian Peninsula were investigated using a comprehensive dataset of gas and submicron particle phase properties measured during the two-month shipborne AQABA field campaign in summer 2017. Post-measurement identification of the source vessels of the emission events and determination of the plume ages enabled the investigation of the influences of vessel characteristics and atmospheric processes on plume properties.
252 emission plumes of ships operating in the Mediterranean Sea and around the Arabian Peninsula...
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