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April 2018
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Upcoming

Jun. 21, 2018 - 15:00
(1) H. Feldmann (2) C. Ullwer (3) J. Vuellers

TRO-Seminar

Jun. 22, 2018 - 14:00
Miriam Sinnhuber
KIT Campus Nord, IMK-ASF

Impact of geomagnetic forcing on temperatures and dynamics of the middle atmosphere

Jun. 25, 2018 - 11:00
Xiaoli Shen
KIT, IMK-AAF

Ice nucleation studies with secondary organic aerosol at MIT

Jun. 26, 2018 - 16:45
Dr. Fabienne Lohou
University Toulouse

Low-level cloud life cycle in West Africa during the DACCIWA campaign

Jun. 29, 2018 - 14:00
Gerald Wetzel / Hermann Oelhaf
KIT Campus Nord, IMK-ASF

The aircraft campaign WISE: Overview and first results

Jul. 05, 2018 - 15:00

TRO-Seminar

Jul. 06, 2018 - 14:00
Johannes Orphal
KIT Campus Nord, IMK-ASF

High resolution spectroscopy of halogen nitrates

Jul. 10, 2018 - 16:45
Prof. Dr. Stephan C. Schuster
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

The air microbiome: A missing ecosystem?

Jul. 13, 2018 - 14:00

KIT Campus Nord, IMK-ASF

ICON-ART

Jul. 17, 2018 - 16:45
Dipl.-Met. Dr. Ulrich Uhrner
,

Assessment and Mitigation of PM pollution in the border regions of Austria and Slovenia

Jul. 19, 2018 - 15:00
(1) M. Maier-Gerber (2) G. Pante (3) Ch. Braun (4) L. A. Quandt

TRO-Seminar

Jul. 20, 2018 - 14:00

KIT Campus Nord, IMK-ASF

EMERGE-Asia


Archive

Aerosols, Clouds, and Atmospheric Chemistry

Welcome to the division "Atmospheric Aerosol Research" of the Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. Our research focuses on the role of aerosols in the climate system, the hydrological cycle, and the environment.
The IMK-AAF

  • operates the internationally renowned AIDA aerosol and cloud simulation chamber
  • runs laboratories for aerosol and cloud research
  • participates in field campaigns
  • performs numerical modelling of atmospheric aerosol processes

The head of the division, Thomas Leisner, is professor at the Institute of Environmental Physics, University of Heidelberg.

 

NEWS

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Bolivia campaign – particle nucleation and urban influence at 5240 masl

Aerosol particle nucleation and urban influences are studied at the Chacaltaya GAW Station (CHC) in the Bolivian Andes (16°21.014'S, 68º07.886'W, 5240 masl). The Chacaltaya mountain directly faces a plateau of 3800 masl in the south and west and is separated from the Amazon basin by higher peaks in the north and east. Research groups from La Paz, Stockholm, Helsinki, Innsbruck, Granada, Leipzig, and Karlsruhe combine their instruments to characterize the aerosol from November 2017 to June 2018. Focus of our contribution is the molecular composition of gas- and particle phase on the mountain and in the La Paz – El Alto metropolitan area.

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HyICE - Aerosol-cloud studies in Hyytiälä

Aerosol-cloud interaction is a first time focus of a field campaign at the SMEAR-II station in Hyytiälä, Finland. The campaign is led by the Department of Physics of the University of Helsinki, with contributions of 8 research teams from Canada, Finland, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, and the UK. From March to May 2018, IMK-AAF is measuring aerosols and ice nucleating particles with newly developed instruments. The measurements have now successfully been started and will last until mid-May, in order to cover the transition from winter to early summer conditions and to assess the contribution of new particle formation and biosphere activity to the INP abundance in the boreal forest area.

Aurora Australis
MARCUS - Southern Ocean Boundary Layer Aerosol in Focus

The Measurements of Aerosols, Radiation, and Clouds over the Southern Ocean (MARCUS) field campaign is acquiring comprehensive observations of aerosols including cloud condensation nuclei and ice nucleating particles in the Southern Ocean boundary layer. The second ARM Mobile Facility is currently installed on the Australian Antarctic supply vessel Aurora Australis as it routinely travels between Hobart and the Antarctic. MARCUS has a strong link with the SOCRATES campaign targeting on clouds in the Southern Ocean and their connection to air-sea exchange processes. IMK-AAF is participating in MARCUS by monitoring the biological aerosol with the WIBS4 instrument.

MARCUS Campaign Description
 
NSF/NCAR HIAPER
SOCRATES - Southern Ocean Clouds in Focus

A research project called the Southern Ocean Clouds, Radiation, Aerosol Transport Experimental Study (SOCRATES) is currently conducted in Tasmania, Australia. The US research aircraft NSF/NCAR HIAPER is deployed to unravel the secrets of clouds over the Southern Ocean. These clouds are frequently misinterpreted by current climate models, and in-situ investigations like SOCRATES play a vital role in enhancing modeling and forecasting capabilities in this area. The IMK-AAF is providing cloud microphysics measurements with the PHIPS probe. 

SOCRATES Project Overview
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IMK-AAF welcomes AvH Postdoctoral Research Fellow

In September 2017, Dr. Nsikanabasi Umo joined IMK-AAF following his prestigious Alexander von Humboldt (AvH) Postdoctoral Research Fellowship Award. His work will focus on understanding the ice nucleation abilities of combustion and other aerosol particles at mixed-phase and cirrus cloud conditions. During October he is leading first experiments with the worldwide unique AIDA Cloud Simulation Chamber at IMK-AAF.

Nsikanabasi Umo obtained his PhD in 2014 from the University of Leeds, United Kingdom, in the field of Atmospheric Sciences. He is grateful to the AvH Foundation, Germany, for the award, which he considers a golden opportunity for his career advancement.

KIT International also welcomes Nsikanabasi Umo as new AvH Fellow.

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Characterisation of Urban Aerosol in Stuttgart

In July and August 2017 we participated in a joint research project on the three-dimensional observation of atmospheric processes in cities (3DO) by dedicated characterisation of the urban background aerosol in the Rosenstein Park in downtown Stuttgart, Germany. This study allows the combination of very detailled meteorological observations with comprehensive characterisation of aerosol chemistry and physics.

Three-dimensional Observation of Atmospheric Processes in Cities
 
 AIDA Scheme
20 Years Aerosol and Cloud Research with AIDA

On May 22nd, 1997, our institute celebrated the formal opening of the new aerosol and cloud chamber facility AIDA. After about two years of construction and technical runs, the first scientific campaign started on May 11th, 1997, and investigated heterogeneous chemistry on soot aerosols. Since then, a number of 5 to 10 campaigns was conducted every year, covering topics of trace gas chemistry, heterogeneous chemistry, aerosol formation, aerosol optical properties, polar stratospheric cloud formation as well as formation, growth, morphology and radiative properties of ice crystals in tropospheric clouds. The aerosol-cloud research with AIDA is also the topic of a recent KIT podcast (in German). We are grateful to all our national and international collaboration partners who contributed and still contribute to many of the AIDA campaigns.

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HDO/H2O isotopic fractionation in simulated cirrus clouds

The first experimental determination of HDO/H2O isotopic fractionation factors for ice deposition in simulated cirrus clouds for temperatures betwen 190-233 K could be achieved in the AIDA aerosol and cloud chamber (Lamb et al., PNAS 2017). In collaboration between the University of Chicago, PTB, and KIT unique measurement techniques for water isotopes were developed and applied for dedicated cirrus cloud simulation experiments. A detailed box model analysis including wall effects resulted in equilibrium fractionation factors and kinetic isotope effects with a weaker temperature dependence than extrapolations of previous work suggested. These results are fundamental for inferring processes on Earth and other planets from water isotopic measurements.

View from Jungfraujoch Research Station
Measurements at the High Altitude Research Station Jungfraujoch

During the INUIT-CLACE campaign in January and February 2017, international teams collaborate at the Jungfraujoch Research Station (3571 m, Switzerland) to investigate aerosol-cloud processes and cloud microphysics in the mixed-phase cloud regime. KIT contributes single particle mass spectrometer measurements of aerosol particles and cloud ice residuals, as well as measurements of ice nucleating particle (INP) concentrations by taking aerosol filter samples for later offline INP analysis with an immersion freezing method.

 
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Integration of European atmospheric simulation chambers in the new EUROCHAMP-2020 infrastructure project

Between December 2016 and 2020 the EU invests ~9 Mio € to further integrate 16 simulation chamber and 4 calibration facilities. This includes the AIDA aerosol and cloud chamber facility of KIT. Trans national access to these facilities is substantially supported. For details contact us or see: www.eurochamp.org.

FSM
Ice active nucleation cites successfully identified on K-Feldspar

Scientists of IMK-AAF, in cooperation with researchers of the KIT Laboratory of Electron Microscopy (LEM) and University College London (UCL) have succeeded in identifying the unique features on K-Feldspar responsible for its high ice nucleation efficiency. As reported in Science magazine (DOI: 10.1126/science.aai8034), they combined electron microscopy observations with molecular modeling to determine for the first time the atomic nature of this important inorganic ice nucleating particle. They showed that ice starts to grow on the specific crystal faces with (100) orientation that only occur at defects (steps, cracks, and crevices) on the surface of feldspar particles.

C-130
Maiden flight of KIT developed instrument onboard the US NCAR C-130

The KIT in-house development PHIPS-HALO was chosen as the only non-US instrument to participate in the NSF funded airborne campaign ARISTO taking place in Colorado, USA. ARISTO is a unique platform for testing innovative and novel technologies in the field of atmospheric research. This year’s platform, the C-130, is well-known for its capabilities to do research flights under harsh conditions. The first flight of the campaign was performed targeting ongoing forest fires in the Rocky Mountains area. The flight was a success for the whole payload and especially for the KIT PHIPS-HALO.

 
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Environmental Award 2015 of the Sparkasse Karlsruhe-Ettlingen received by Natascha Savic

She received the award for her Master thesis “Influence of biodiesel fuel composition on morphology and microstructure of particles emitted from Diesel engines”. Her results are expected to be useful for the development of after treatment devices and the understanding of the atmospheric behaviour of soot particles as well as their health effects.  (http://www.umweltstiftung-karlsruhe.de/sparkassen-umwelt-preis)

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Field campaign to compare AeroTram data with results of stationary measurements near Leopoldshafen

AeroTram findings of unexpected high annual averaged particle number concentrations near Leopoldshafen are investigated in a joint effort by IMK-TRO and IMK-AAF. A measurement container equipped with various gas and particle sensors including most advanced mass spectrometers is deployed near Leopoldshafen to identify the nature and potentially the origin of the high particle concentrations observed by the instrumented AeroTram (http://www.aero-tram.kit.edu/).

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IMK-AAF at ZKM

The scientific research at AAF is part of the exhibition "GLOBALE: Exo-Evolution" at Center for Art and Media (ZKM, Karlsruhe, Germany). From 31.10 2015 to 28.02.2016 two exhibits, “High speed video recordings of freely levitated freezing droplets” and “Ice crystals growing on feldspar mineral in electron microscope” can be seen in the ZKM, Atrium 8+9. The exhibits show high resolution video recordings of microphysical processes responsible for nucleation and growth of ice in atmospheric clouds. The exhibition opening takes place on Friday, October 30th, 2015 at 7:30 pm.

 
StormPeakLAb
KIT GRACE student contributes to FIN03

During September 2015, U.S. and German teams of atmospheric ice nucleation research collaborate at the Storm Peak Laboratory, Steamboat Springs, Colorado, to intercompare methods for sampling ice nucleating particles from ambient air. This activity called FIN03 is the final major experimental activity within the Fifth International Ice Nucleation Workshop (FIN). The KIT PhD student Thea Schiebel is participating in this activity as part of her 3 month visit to the Colorado State University which is supported by the KIT Graduate School for Climate and Environment (GRACE)