Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research

First ice nucleation experiments with the new dynamic cloud chamber AIDAd

Based on more than 20 years of experience in operating the AIDA facility as a cloud simulation chamber, we have developed and started to operate the new dynamic cloud chamber AIDAd.
AIDAd_control_center
Upper part of the new AIDAd chamber with the control center.

The new and innovative cloud chamber design was developed in close collaboration with Bilfinger Noell GmbH in Würzburg, Germany, and with ILK Dresden, Germany. With a volume of 3.8 m3, AIDAd is much smaller than AIDAc (AIDA classic), but has the advantage that its walls can dynamically be cooled at cooling rates of up to 10 K min-1 in a wide temperature range from +30°C to -55°C. The cloud chamber is located in a vacuum chamber which can be evacuated at a controlled rate, so that the related adiabatic cooling rate inside the cloud chamber equals its wall cooling rate. By that, AIDAd can simulate conditions in air parcels with updraft velocities of up to 15 m s-1 to study cloud droplet and ice formation processes at well controlled cloud conditions. In August 2020, we have successfully operated AIDAd for first series of heterogeneous and homogeneous ice nucleation experiments with mineral dust aerosol particles and water droplets. This new and worldwide unique cloud simulation chamber will allow new laboratory based research on the impact of aerosols on cloud formation, cloud internal droplet and ice particle processes, as well as precipitation formation. As the well established AIDAc facility, the new dynamic cloud chamber will also be open for national and international projects and collaborations.

Contact and further Information

Dr. Ottmar Möhler