Salting Constants of Small Organic Molecules in Aerosol-Relevant Salts and Application to Aerosol Formation in the Southeastern United States
Wednesday, 17 December 2014
Secondary organic aerosol (SOA) formation from small water-soluble molecules such as glyoxal and methyl glyoxal is a topic of emerging interest. Results from recent field campaigns, e.g. Waxman et al. (2013, GRL) and Knote et al. (2014, ACP), show that these molecules can form significant SOA mass as a result of ‘salting-in’. Salting-in happens when a molecule’s solubility increases with salt concentration and salting-out is the reverse. Salting effects modify the solubility exponentially with increasing salt concentration, and thus the effective Henry’s law constant can strongly modify partitioning, and multiphase chemical reaction rates in aerosol water. Moreover, the solubility in aerosol water cannot easily inferred based on the solubility in cloud water, as the salting effects could change the solubility by a factor of 104 or more. In this work, we have devised and applied a novel experimental setup to measure salting constants using an ion trap mass spectrometer. We focus on small, water soluble molecules like methyl glyoxal and similar compounds and measure salting constants for aerosol-relevant salts including ammonium sulfate, ammonium nitrate, and sodium chloride. The Setschenow salting-constant values are then used to parameterize the effects of salting in CMAQ. We present a series of sensitivity studies of the effects that inorganic aerosols have on the SOA formation from small soluble molecules in the southeastern United States.