Aerosol Mass Loading, Mixing State, Size and Number in Present Day (2000) and Future (2100): Study with the Advanced Particle Microphysics (APM) module in the Community Earth System Model (CESM)

Wednesday, 17 December 2014
Gan Luo, SUNY at Albany, Albany, NY, United States and Fangqun Yu, SUNY Albany, Albany, NY, United States
Aerosols affect the global energy budget by scattering and absorbing sunlight (direct effects) and by changing the microphysical properties, lifetime, and coverage of clouds (indirect effects). One of the key challenges in quantifying the aerosol direct and indirect effects is to deep our understanding about the size distribution, size-resolved composition, and mixing state of aerosols. However, detailed information on size distribution and mixing state is often not available or incomplete in current climate models. Here, we incorporated APM into CESM. APM is a multi-type, multi-component (sulfate, nitrate, ammonium, SOA, BC, OC, dust, and sea salt), size-resolved particle microphysics model. Online chemistry, up-to-date nucleation, oxidation aging of medium-volatile and semi-volatile organic gases, aerosol-cloud interaction with stratiform cloud, shallow convection cloud, and deep convection cloud are considered. The amounts of secondary species coated on primary particles, through condensation, coagulation, equilibrium uptake, and aqueous chemistry, are also tracked. Model results are compared with aerosol mass observed by IMPROVE/EMEP, vertical structure of global particle number from aircraft-based field campaigns, particle and cloud condensation nuclei number at ground-based stations, aerosol optical properties retrieved by several satellites. Model results can capture the major characteristics shown in these observations. With this model system, we find that global burdens of sulfate, nitrate, ammonium, BC, OC from 2000 to 2100, under scenario RCP 4.5 where total radiative forcing is stabilized before 2100, are decreased by 44%, 50%, 43%, 40%, 40%, respectively. Dust and sea salt increase slightly. Global burdens of secondary species coated on BCOC, dust, and sea salt are deceased by 34%, 30% and 60%, respectively. Global averaged aerosol number in the lower troposphere (from surface to 3 km) is significantly decreased, especially for particles smaller than 40 nm. Although secondary particles (SP) are decreased from 2000 to 2100, aerosol number is still dominated by SP. Cloud droplet number in the lower troposphere is decreased 30% from 2000 to 2100. The impacts of the aerosol changes on cloud properties, precipitation, and radiative forcing will be discussed in detail.