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Temperature and composition dependence of sea spray aerosol production

TitleTemperature and composition dependence of sea spray aerosol production
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsForestieri SD, Moore K.A, Borrero R.M, Wang A., Stokes MD, Cappa CD
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Date Published2018/07
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number0094-8276
Accession NumberWOS:000442582100052
Keywordsbreaking-wave analog; chemical-composition; climate; dissolved organic-matter; Geology; marine; mediterranean sea; ocean; parameterization; salt aerosol; Water temperature

A discrepancy between laboratory and field-derived parameterizations for the dependence of sea spray aerosol (SSA) particle number concentrations (N-p) and size distributions on water temperature (T-w) exists. Here we address this discrepancy by quantifying the T-w dependence of SSA production over the range -2-25 degrees C for laboratory-generated particles using a marine aerosol reference tank (MART), a miniature MART (miniMART), and a plunging jet. Four water types were considered: NaCl water, reef salt (RS) water, filtered and autoclaved reef salt (FARS), and filtered but not autoclaved seawater (NASW). For NaCl, RS, and FARS water the N-p exhibited a moderate, monotonic increase with T-w for all generation methods (sensitivity of 2.1-4.1%/degrees C). This contrasts with some previous laboratory studies but is consistent with parameterizations derived from ambient observations. The reconciliation of laboratory results with these parameterizations supports their use in global models. The T-w sensitivity also increased with particle size in the submicron size range. This indicates the fraction of primary SSA that can act as cloud condensation nuclei has a different sensitivity to T-w than the total particle number. The particle production for actual seawater (NASW) differed from the other water types, exhibiting complex, irreproducible behavior with no clear T-w dependence due most likely to biologically or physically driven temporal evolution of seawater composition. This suggests that variability in seawater composition may have as large an impact as temperature on actual SSA production. These observations provide new constraints and context for understanding the dependence of SSA production on water temperature and composition. Plain Language Summary Using recently developed methods for sea spray particle generation, we established that sea spray aerosol production increases monotonically to only a moderate extent as temperature increases for salt solutions. However, for real seawater the temperature dependence is complicated by the chemical composition of the seawater likely having evolved over time. Our findings are important for representing particle production from wave breaking in the ocean in global models.

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