Biomass Burning: Major Uncertainties, Advances, and Opportunities

Thursday, 18 December 2014: 2:25 PM
Robert J Yokelson1, Chelsea Stockwell2, Patrick R Veres3, Lindsay E Hatch4, Kelley C Barsanti4, Xiaoxi Liu5, Greg Huey6, Thomas B Ryerson3, Jack E Dibb7, Armin Wisthaler8, Markus Müller9, Matthew James Alvarado10, Sonia M Kreidenweis11, Allen L Robinson12, Owen B Toon13, Jeff Peischl14 and Ilana B Pollack15, (1)Univ Montana, Missoula, MT, United States, (2)University of Montana, Missoula, MT, United States, (3)NOAA Boulder, Boulder, CO, United States, (4)Portland State University, Portland, OR, United States, (5)Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, United States, (6)Georgia Institute of Technology Main Campus, School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Atlanta, GA, United States, (7)Univ New Hampshire, Durham, NH, United States, (8)University of Oslo, Department of Chemistry, Oslo, Norway, (9)University of Innsbruck, Innsbruck, Austria, (10)AER, Inc., Lexington, MA, United States, (11)Colorado State Univ, Fort Collins, CO, United States, (12)Carnegie Mellon University, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Pittsburgh, PA, United States, (13)University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, CO, United States, (14)NOAA ESRL Chemical Sciences Division, Boulder, CO, United States, Boulder, CO, United States, (15)NOAA, Boulder, CO, United States
Domestic and open biomass burning are poorly-understood, major influences on Earth’s atmosphere composed of countless individual fires that (along with their products) are difficult to quantify spatially and temporally. Each fire is a minimally-controlled complex phenomenon producing a diverse suite of gases and aerosols that experience many different atmospheric processing scenarios. New lab, airborne, and space-based observations along with model and algorithm development are significantly improving our knowledge of biomass burning. Several campaigns provided new detailed emissions profiles for previously undersampled fire types; including wildfires, cooking fires, peat fires, and agricultural burning; which may increase in importance with climate change and rising population. Multiple campaigns have better characterized black and brown carbon and used new instruments such as high resolution PTR-TOF-MS and 2D-GC/TOF-MS to improve quantification of semi-volatile precursors to aerosol and ozone. The aerosol evolution and formation of PAN and ozone, within hours after emission, have now been measured extensively. The NASA DC-8 sampled smoke before and after cloud-processing in two campaigns. The DC-8 performed continuous intensive sampling of a wildfire plume from the source in California to Canada probing multi-day aerosol and trace gas aging. Night-time plume chemistry has now been measured in detail. Fire inventories are being compared and improved, as is modeling of mass transfer between phases and sub-grid photochemistry for global models.