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  • Author or Editor: John H. Seinfeld x
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John H. Seinfeld
,
Ralph A. Kahn
,
Theodore L. Anderson
,
Robert J. Charlson
,
Roger Davies
,
David J. Diner
,
John A. Ogren
,
Stephen E. Schwartz
, and
Bruce A. Wielicki

Aerosols are involved in a complex set of processes that operate across many spatial and temporal scales. Understanding these processes, and ensuring their accurate representation in models of transport, radiation transfer, and climate, requires knowledge of aerosol physical, chemical, and optical properties and the distributions of these properties in space and time. To derive aerosol climate forcing, aerosol optical and microphysical properties and their spatial and temporal distributions, and aerosol interactions with clouds, need to be understood. Such data are also required in conjunction with size-resolved chemical composition in order to evaluate chemical transport models and to distinguish natural and anthropogenic forcing. Other basic parameters needed for modeling the radiative influences of aerosols are surface reflectivity and three-dimensional cloud fields. This large suite of parameters mandates an integrated observing and modeling system of commensurate scope. The Progressive Aerosol Retrieval and Assimilation Global Observing Network (PARAGON) concept, designed to meet this requirement, is motivated by the need to understand climate system sensitivity to changes in atmospheric constituents, to reduce climate model uncertainties, and to analyze diverse collections of data pertaining to aerosols. This paper highlights several challenges resulting from the complexity of the problem. Approaches for dealing with them are offered in the set of companion papers.

Full access
Ralph A. Kahn
,
John A. Ogren
,
Thomas P. Ackerman
,
Jens Bösenberg
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Robert J. Charlson
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David J. Diner
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Brent N. Holben
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Robert T. Menzies
,
Mark A. Miller
, and
John H. Seinfeld

We briefly but systematically review major sources of aerosol data, emphasizing suites of measurements that seem most likely to contribute to assessments of global aerosol climate forcing. The strengths and limitations of existing satellite, surface, and aircraft remote sensing systems are described, along with those of direct sampling networks and ship-based stations. It is evident that an enormous number of aerosol-related observations have been made, on a wide range of spatial and temporal sampling scales, and that many of the key gaps in this collection of data could be filled by technologies that either exist or are expected to be available in the near future. Emphasis must be given to combining remote sensing and in situ active and passive observations and integrating them with aerosol chemical transport models, in order to create a more complete environmental picture, having sufficient detail to address current climate forcing questions. The Progressive Aerosol Retrieval and Assimilation Global Observing Network (PARAGON) initiative would provide an organizational framework to meet this goal.

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Ralph A. Kahn
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Tim A. Berkoff
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Charles Brock
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Gao Chen
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Richard A. Ferrare
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Steven Ghan
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Thomas F. Hansico
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Dean A. Hegg
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J. Vanderlei Martins
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Cameron S. McNaughton
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Daniel M. Murphy
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John A. Ogren
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Joyce E. Penner
,
Peter Pilewskie
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John H. Seinfeld
, and
Douglas R. Worsnop

Abstract

A modest operational program of systematic aircraft measurements can resolve key satellite aerosol data record limitations. Satellite observations provide frequent global aerosol amount maps but offer only loose aerosol property constraints needed for climate and air quality applications. We define and illustrate the feasibility of flying an aircraft payload to measure key aerosol optical, microphysical, and chemical properties in situ. The flight program could characterize major aerosol airmass types statistically, at a level of detail unobtainable from space. It would 1) enhance satellite aerosol retrieval products with better climatology assumptions and 2) improve translation between satellite-retrieved optical properties and species-specific aerosol mass and size simulated in climate models to assess aerosol forcing, its anthropogenic components, and other environmental impacts. As such, Systematic Aircraft Measurements to Characterize Aerosol Air Masses (SAM-CAAM) could add value to data records representing several decades of aerosol observations from space; improve aerosol constraints on climate modeling; help interrelate remote sensing, in situ, and modeling aerosol-type definitions; and contribute to future satellite aerosol missions. Fifteen required variables are identified and four payload options of increasing ambition are defined to constrain these quantities. “Option C” could meet all the SAM-CAAM objectives with about 20 instruments, most of which have flown before, but never routinely several times per week, and never as a group. Aircraft integration and approaches to data handling, payload support, and logistical considerations for a long-term, operational mission are discussed. SAM-CAAM is feasible because, for most aerosol sources and specified seasons, particle properties tend to be repeatable, even if aerosol loading varies.

Open access
Lynn M. Russell
,
Armin Sorooshian
,
John H. Seinfeld
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Bruce A. Albrecht
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Athanasios Nenes
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Lars Ahlm
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Yi-Chun Chen
,
Matthew Coggon
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Jill S. Craven
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Richard C. Flagan
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Amanda A. Frossard
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Haflidi Jonsson
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Eunsil Jung
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Jack J. Lin
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Andrew R. Metcalf
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Robin Modini
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Johannes Mülmenstädt
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Greg Roberts
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Taylor Shingler
,
Siwon Song
,
Zhen Wang
, and
Anna Wonaschütz

Aerosol–cloud–radiation interactions are widely held to be the largest single source of uncertainty in climate model projections of future radiative forcing due to increasing anthropogenic emissions. The underlying causes of this uncertainty among modeled predictions of climate are the gaps in our fundamental understanding of cloud processes. There has been significant progress with both observations and models in addressing these important questions but quantifying them correctly is nontrivial, thus limiting our ability to represent them in global climate models. The Eastern Pacific Emitted Aerosol Cloud Experiment (E-PEACE) 2011 was a targeted aircraft campaign with embedded modeling studies, using the Center for Interdisciplinary Remotely-Piloted Aircraft Studies (CIRPAS) Twin Otter aircraft and the research vessel Point Sur in July and August 2011 off the central coast of California, with a full payload of instruments to measure particle and cloud number, mass, composition, and water uptake distributions. EPEACE used three emitted particle sources to separate particle-induced feedbacks from dynamical variability, namely 1) shipboard smoke-generated particles with 0.05–1-μm diameters (which produced tracks measured by satellite and had drop composition characteristic of organic smoke), 2) combustion particles from container ships with 0.05–0.2-μm diameters (which were measured in a variety of conditions with droplets containing both organic and sulfate components), and 3) aircraft-based milled salt particles with 3–5-μm diameters (which showed enhanced drizzle rates in some clouds). The aircraft observations were consistent with past large-eddy simulations of deeper clouds in ship tracks and aerosol– cloud parcel modeling of cloud drop number and composition, providing quantitative constraints on aerosol effects on warm-cloud microphysics.

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David J. Diner
,
Thomas P. Ackerman
,
Theodore L. Anderson
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Jens Bösenberg
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Amy J. Braverman
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Robert J. Charlson
,
William D. Collins
,
Roger Davies
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Brent N. Holben
,
Chris A . Hostetler
,
Ralph A. Kahn
,
John V. Martonchik
,
Robert T. Menzies
,
Mark A. Miller
,
John A. Ogren
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Joyce E. Penner
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Philip J. Rasch
,
Stephen E. Schwartz
,
John H. Seinfeld
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Graeme L. Stephens
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Omar Torres
,
Larry D. Travis
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Bruce A . Wielicki
, and
Bin Yu

Aerosols exert myriad influences on the earth's environment and climate, and on human health. The complexity of aerosol-related processes requires that information gathered to improve our understanding of climate change must originate from multiple sources, and that effective strategies for data integration need to be established. While a vast array of observed and modeled data are becoming available, the aerosol research community currently lacks the necessary tools and infrastructure to reap maximum scientific benefit from these data. Spatial and temporal sampling differences among a diverse set of sensors, nonuniform data qualities, aerosol mesoscale variabilities, and difficulties in separating cloud effects are some of the challenges that need to be addressed. Maximizing the longterm benefit from these data also requires maintaining consistently well-understood accuracies as measurement approaches evolve and improve. Achieving a comprehensive understanding of how aerosol physical, chemical, and radiative processes impact the earth system can be achieved only through a multidisciplinary, interagency, and international initiative capable of dealing with these issues. A systematic approach, capitalizing on modern measurement and modeling techniques, geospatial statistics methodologies, and high-performance information technologies, can provide the necessary machinery to support this objective. We outline a framework for integrating and interpreting observations and models, and establishing an accurate, consistent, and cohesive long-term record, following a strategy whereby information and tools of progressively greater sophistication are incorporated as problems of increasing complexity are tackled. This concept is named the Progressive Aerosol Retrieval and Assimilation Global Observing Network (PARAGON). To encompass the breadth of the effort required, we present a set of recommendations dealing with data interoperability; measurement and model integration; multisensor synergy; data summarization and mining; model evaluation; calibration and validation; augmentation of surface and in situ measurements; advances in passive and active remote sensing; and design of satellite missions. Without an initiative of this nature, the scientific and policy communities will continue to struggle with understanding the quantitative impact of complex aerosol processes on regional and global climate change and air quality.

Full access
John H. Seinfeld
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Gregory R. Carmichael
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Richard Arimoto
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William C. Conant
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Frederick J. Brechtel
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Timothy S. Bates
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Thomas A. Cahill
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Antony D. Clarke
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Sarah J. Doherty
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Piotr J. Flatau
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Barry J. Huebert
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Jiyoung Kim
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Krzysztof M. Markowicz
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Patricia K. Quinn
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Lynn M. Russell
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Philip B. Russell
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Atsushi Shimizu
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Yohei Shinozuka
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Chul H. Song
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Youhua Tang
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Itsushi Uno
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Andrew M. Vogelmann
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Rodney J. Weber
,
Jung-Hun Woo
, and
Xiao Y. Zhang

Although continental-scale plumes of Asian dust and pollution reduce the amount of solar radiation reaching the earth's surface and perturb the chemistry of the atmosphere, our ability to quantify these effects has been limited by a lack of critical observations, particularly of layers above the surface. Comprehensive surface, airborne, shipboard, and satellite measurements of Asian aerosol chemical composition, size, optical properties, and radiative impacts were performed during the Asian Pacific Regional Aerosol Characterization Experiment (ACE-Asia) study. Measurements within a massive Chinese dust storm at numerous widely spaced sampling locations revealed the highly complex structure of the atmosphere, in which layers of dust, urban pollution, and biomass- burning smoke may be transported long distances as distinct entities or mixed together. The data allow a first-time assessment of the regional climatic and atmospheric chemical effects of a continental-scale mixture of dust and pollution. Our results show that radiative flux reductions during such episodes are sufficient to cause regional climate change.

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Armin Sorooshian
,
Bruce Anderson
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Susanne E. Bauer
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Rachel A. Braun
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Brian Cairns
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Ewan Crosbie
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Hossein Dadashazar
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Glenn Diskin
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Richard Ferrare
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Richard C. Flagan
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Johnathan Hair
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Chris Hostetler
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Haflidi H. Jonsson
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Mary M. Kleb
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Hongyu Liu
,
Alexander B. MacDonald
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Allison McComiskey
,
Richard Moore
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David Painemal
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Lynn M. Russell
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John H. Seinfeld
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Michael Shook
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William L. Smith Jr
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Kenneth Thornhill
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George Tselioudis
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Hailong Wang
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Xubin Zeng
,
Bo Zhang
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Luke Ziemba
, and
Paquita Zuidema

Abstract

We report on a multiyear set of airborne field campaigns (2005–16) off the California coast to examine aerosols, clouds, and meteorology, and how lessons learned tie into the upcoming NASA Earth Venture Suborbital (EVS-3) campaign: Aerosol Cloud meTeorology Interactions oVer the western ATlantic Experiment (ACTIVATE; 2019–23). The largest uncertainty in estimating global anthropogenic radiative forcing is associated with the interactions of aerosol particles with clouds, which stems from the variability of cloud systems and the multiple feedbacks that affect and hamper efforts to ascribe changes in cloud properties to aerosol perturbations. While past campaigns have been limited in flight hours and the ability to fly in and around clouds, efforts sponsored by the Office of Naval Research have resulted in 113 single aircraft flights (>500 flight hours) in a fixed region with warm marine boundary layer clouds. All flights used nearly the same payload of instruments on a Twin Otter to fly below, in, and above clouds, producing an unprecedented dataset. We provide here i) an overview of statistics of aerosol, cloud, and meteorological conditions encountered in those campaigns and ii) quantification of model-relevant metrics associated with aerosol–cloud interactions leveraging the high data volume and statistics. Based on lessons learned from those flights, we describe the pragmatic innovation in sampling strategy (dual-aircraft approach with combined in situ and remote sensing) that will be used in ACTIVATE to generate a dataset that can advance scientific understanding and improve physical parameterizations for Earth system and weather forecasting models, and for assessing next-generation remote sensing retrieval algorithms.

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