Navigation Links
Organic vapors affect clouds leading to previously unidentified climate cooling
Date:5/5/2013

University of Manchester scientists, writing in the journal Nature Geoscience, have shown that natural emissions and manmade pollutants can both have an unexpected cooling effect on the world's climate by making clouds brighter.

Clouds are made of water droplets, condensed on to tiny particles suspended in the air. When the air is humid enough, the particles swell into cloud droplets. It has been known for some decades that the number of these particles and their size control how bright the clouds appear from the top, controlling the efficiency with which clouds scatter sunlight back into space. A major challenge for climate science is to understand and quantify these effects which have a major impact in polluted regions.

The tiny seed particles can either be natural (for example, sea spray or dust) or manmade pollutants (from vehicle exhausts or industrial activity). These particles often contain a large amount of organic material and these compounds are quite volatile, so in warm conditions exist as a vapour (in much the same way as a perfume is liquid but gives off an aroma when it evaporates on warm skin).

The researchers found that the effect acts in reverse in the atmosphere as volatile organic compounds from pollution or from the biosphere evaporate and give off characteristic aromas, such as the pine smells from forest, but under moist cooler conditions where clouds form, the molecules prefer to be liquid and make larger particles that are more effective seeds for cloud droplets.

"We discovered that organic compounds such as those formed from forest emissions or from vehicle exhaust, affect the number of droplets in a cloud and hence its brightness, so affecting climate," said study author Professor Gordon McFiggans, from the University of Manchester's School of Earth, Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences.

"We developed a model and made predictions of a substantially enhanced number of cloud droplets from an atmospherically reasonable amount of organic gases.

"More cloud droplets lead to brighter cloud when viewed from above, reflecting more incoming sunlight. We did some calculations of the effects on climate and found that the cooling effect on global climate of the increase in cloud seed effectiveness is at least as great as the previously found entire uncertainty in the effect of pollution on clouds."


'/>"/>

Contact: Aeron Haworth
aeron.haworth@manchester.ac.uk
44-771-788-1563
University of Manchester
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Organic study of live pancreatic tissue yields new opportunities for diabetes research
2. New protocol recommendations for measuring soil organic carbon sequestration
3. Organic rice research moves to front burner in Texas
4. Organic tomatoes accumulate more vitamin C, sugars than conventionally grown fruit
5. High performance semiconductor spray paint could be a game changer for organic electronics
6. Lab-on-a-chip detects trace levels of toxic vapors in homes near Utah Air Force Base
7. Dung beetle diversity affects Florida livestock producers
8. BPA could affect reproductive capabilities, cause infection of the uterus
9. Life expectancy may affect when you get married, divorced, have kids: Queens University study
10. Loss of predators in Northern Hemisphere affecting ecosystem health
11. Genetically modified corn affects its symbiotic relationship with non-target soil organisms
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/6/2017)... Jan. 5, 2017  Delta ID Inc., a leader ... technology for automotive at CESĀ® 2017. Delta ID has ... to demonstrate the use of iris scanning as a ... the driver in a car, and as a way ... experience. Delta ID and Gentex will demonstrate ...
(Date:12/22/2016)... 22, 2016 SuperCom (NASDAQ:   ... for the e-Government, Public Safety, HealthCare, and Finance sectors announced today ... been selected to implement and deploy a community-based supportive services program ... California , further expanding its presence in the state. ... This new program, which ...
(Date:12/16/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition ... to 2021" report to their offering. ... The biometric vehicle access system market, ... of 14.06% from 2016 to 2021. The market is estimated to ... 854.8 Million by 2021. The growth of the biometric vehicle access ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/19/2017)... /PRNewswire -- WuXi AppTec, a leading global pharmaceutical, ... platform, today announced that it has acquired HD ... discovery contract research organization (CRO). After completion of ... of WuXi, and will continue to focus on ... The acquisition will further strengthen WuXi,s R&D capability ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... CALABASAS, Calif. , Jan. 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... Mathias Schmidt , Ph.D., as chief executive ... board of directors. Dr. Schmidt brings to ArmaGen more ... on the research and development of biotherapeutics and ... biopharmaceutical executive with the diverse experience and skillset ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... Minneapolis, Minnesota (PRWEB) , ... January 19, 2017 ... ... contract research organization with services spanning the full spectrum of drug and device ... clinical research services to pharma/device companies and clinicians, today announced Verified Clinical ...
(Date:1/18/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Opal Kelly, a leading producer of powerful ... the ZEM5310 USB 3.0 FPGA Module, combining a SuperSpeed USB 3.0 interface and ... suitable for prototyping, testing, and production-ready integration. The ZEM5310 USB interface delivers real-world ...
Breaking Biology Technology: