The group conducts theoretical, experimental, and modeling research to understand atmospheric aerosol and cloud physics that pertain to the needs of the U.S. Navy, including:

  • the effect of aerosol properties (i.e. size distribution and chemical composition) on electromagnetic propagation through the atmosphere
  • the effect of aerosols on microphysical characteristics of clouds, fogs, and hazes in the marine and coastal environments
  • understanding the sources, sinks, and transformation processes responsible for the evolution of the aerosol size and composition distributions
  • developing numerical models to simulate aerosol and cloud dynamics in the marine and coastal environments, including integration with meso-scale and global weather models such as the NRL's COAMPS model

MARBLES

MARine Boundary Layer aEroSol model: Modeling aerosol micro-physics

We have developed a 1-dimensional aerosol micro-physical model that includes:

  • aerosol generation
  • nucleation
  • condensational growth
  • coagulation
  • gravitational settling
  • humidification
  • vertical mixing
  • large scale vertical motions (subsidence and lifting)
  • 4 chemical species: sea salt, dust, sulfate, and water
  • sizes from 5 nanometers to 33 micrometers
  • sectional aerosol sizes
  • cloud processing of aerosols
  • sulfate speciation by source (cloud processed, condensed, nucleated, heterogeneous oxidation)

MARBLES, using hourly meteorological data taken from NRL's COAMPS meso-scale model, has been used to simulate the dynamics of MBL aerosols in the remote Pacific Ocean near Hawaii (Caffrey, Hoppel, and Shi, JGR 10.1029/2006JD007237, 2006). Sample MARBLES results, taken from this reference, are contained below.

This figure shows the total number distribution at 4 different altitudes.
This figure shows the total number distribution at 4 different altitudes.
This figure depicts the mass size distribution for the same time at a single altitude (475 m), and for each of the chemical species. The total sulfate (black) is further specified by origin: originating in the free troposphere (FreeT), formed from in-cloud oxidation of sulfur dioxide (CloudP), condensed sulfuric acid from gas-phase oxidation products (Condensed), or formed from heterogeneous (wet-aerosol) oxidation of sulfur dioxide (Heterogeneous).
This figure depicts the mass size distribution for the same time at a single altitude (475 m), and for each of the chemical species. The total sulfate (black) is further specified by origin: originating in the free troposphere (FreeT), formed from in-cloud oxidation of sulfur dioxide (CloudP), condensed sulfuric acid from gas-phase oxidation products (Condensed), or formed from heterogeneous (wet-aerosol) oxidation of sulfur dioxide (Heterogeneous).