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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers | Copyright
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 10 Jul 2018

Research article | 10 Jul 2018

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This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT).

The Fifth International Workshop on Ice Nucleation phase 2 (FIN-02): Laboratory intercomparison of ice nucleation measurements

Paul J. DeMott1, Ottmar Möhler2, Daniel J. Cziczo3,4, Naruki Hiranuma2,a, Markus D. Petters5, Sarah S. Petters5,b, Franco Belosi6, Heinz G. Bingemer7, Sarah D. Brooks8, Carsten Budke9, Monika Burkert-Kohn10, Kristen N. Collier8, Anja Danielczok7,c, Oliver Eppers11, Laura Felgitsch12, Sarvesh Garimella3,d, Hinrich Grothe12, Paul Herenz13, Thomas C. J. Hill1, Kristina Höhler2, Zamin A. Kanji10, Alexei Kiselev2, Thomas Koop9, Thomas B. Kristensen13,e, Konstantin Krüger7,2, Gourihar Kulkarni14, Ezra J. T. Levin1, Benjamin J. Murray15, Alessia Nicosia6,f, Daniel O'Sullivan15, Andreas Peckaus2,g, Michael J. Polen16, Hannah C. Price15,h, Naama Reicher17, Daniel A. Rothenberg3, Yinon Rudich17, Gianni Santachiara6, Thea Schiebel2, Jann Schrod7, Teresa M. Seifried12, Frank Stratmann13, Ryan C. Sullivan16, Kaitlyn J. Suski1,i, Miklós Szakáll11, Hans P. Taylor5, Romy Ullrich2, Jesús Vergara-Temprado15,10, Robert Wagner2, Thomas F. Whale15, Daniel Weber7, André Welti13,j, Theodore W. Wilson15,k, Martin J. Wolf3, and Jake Zenker8 Paul J. DeMott et al.
  • 1Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523-1371, USA
  • 2Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research (IMK-AAF), Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, Germany
  • 3Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, USA
  • 4Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, USA
  • 5Department of Marine, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC, USA
  • 6Institute of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate (ISAC-CNR), Bologna, Italy
  • 7Institute for Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, Goethe-University Frankfurt, 60438 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
  • 8Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, USA
  • 9Faculty of Chemistry, Bielefeld University, Bielefeld, Germany
  • 10Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science, ETH Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland
  • 11Institute for Atmospheric Physics, Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany
  • 12Institute of Materials Chemistry, TU Wien, Vienna, Austria
  • 13Leibniz Institute for Tropospheric Research, 04318 Leipzig, Germany
  • 14Atmospheric Sciences and Global Change Division, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA, USA
  • 15Institute for Climate and Atmospheric Science, School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, LS2 9JT, UK
  • 16Center for Atmospheric Particle Studies, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
  • 17Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Weizmann Institute, Rehovot 76100, Israel
  • anow at: Department of Life, Earth and Environmental Sciences, West Texas A&M University, Canyon, TX, USA
  • bnow at: Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, Chapel Hill, NC, USA
  • cnow at: German Weather Service, Satellite-based Climate Monitoring, 63067 Offenbach am Main, Germany
  • dnow at: ACME AtronOmatic, LLC, Portland, OR, USA
  • enow at: Division of Nuclear Physics, Lund University, Box 118, Lund 22100, Sweden
  • fnow at: Laboratoire de Méteorologie Physique (Lamp-CNRS), Aubière, France
  • gnow at: German Aerospace Center (DLR), Institute of Technical Physics, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany
  • hnow at: Facility for Airborne Atmospheric Measurements, Cranfield, MK43 0AL, UK
  • inow at: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA, USA
  • jnow at: Finnish Meteorological Institute, 00101 Helsinki, Finland
  • know at: Owlstone Medical Ltd., 162 Cambridge Science Park, Milton Road, Cambridge, CB4 0GH, UK

Abstract. The second phase of the Fifth International Ice Nucleation Workshop (FIN-02) involved the gathering of a large number of researchers at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology's Aerosol Interactions and Dynamics of the Atmosphere (AIDA) facility to promote characterization and understanding of ice nucleation measurements made by the variety of methods used worldwide. Compared to the previous workshop in 2007, participation was doubled, reflecting a vibrant research area. Experimental methods involved sampling of aerosol particles by online ice nucleation measuring systems from the same volume of air in separate experiments using different ice nucleating particle (INP) types, and collections of aerosol particle samples onto filters or into liquid for sharing amongst offline measurement techniques. In this manner, any errors introduced by differences in generation methods when samples are shared across laboratories were mitigated. Furthermore, as much as possible, aerosol particle size distribution was controlled so that the size limitations of different methods were minimized. The results presented here use data from the workshop to assess the comparability of offline immersion freezing measurement methods activating INPs in bulk suspensions, offline methods that activate INPs in condensation and/or immersion freezing modes as single particles on a substrate, online continuous flow diffusion chambers (CFDCs) operating well above water saturation to maximize immersion and subsequent freezing of aerosol particles, and expansion cloud chamber simulations in which liquid cloud droplets were first activated on aerosol particles prior to freezing. The AIDA expansion chamber measurements are expected to be the closest representation to INP activation in atmospheric cloud parcels in these comparisons, due to exposing particles freely to adiabatic cooling.

The different particle types used as INPs included the minerals illite NX and K-feldspar, two natural soil dusts representative of arable sandy loam (Argentina) and highly erodible sandy dryland (Tunisia) soils, respectively, and a bacterial INP (Snomax®). Considered together, the agreement among offline immersion freezing measurements of the numbers and fractions of particles active at different temperatures following bulk collection of particles into liquid was excellent, with possible temperature uncertainties inferred to be a key factor in determining INP uncertainties. Collection onto filters versus directly into liquid in impingers made little difference. For offline methods that activated single particles on a substrate at a controlled humidity at or above water saturation, agreement with immersion freezing methods was good in most cases, but was biased low in a few others for reasons that have not been resolved, but could relate to water vapor competition effects. Amongst CFDC-style instruments, various factors requiring (variable) higher supersaturations to achieve equivalent immersion freezing activation dominate the uncertainty between these measurements, and for comparison with bulk immersion freezing methods. When operated above water saturation to include assessment of immersion freezing, CFDC measurements often measured at or above the upper bound of immersion freezing device measurements, but often underestimated INP concentration in comparison to an immersion freezing method that first activates all particles into liquid droplets prior to cooling (the PIMCA-PINC device), and typically slightly underestimated INP number concentrations in comparison to cloud parcel expansions in the AIDA chamber; this can be largely mitigated when it is possible to raise the relative humidity to sufficiently high values in the CFDCs, although this is not always possible operationally.

Correspondence of measurements of INPs among online and offline systems varied depending on the INP type. Agreement was best for Snomax® particles in the temperature regime colder than −10°C, where their ice nucleation activity is nearly maximized and changes very little with temperature. At warmer than −10°C, Snomax® INP measurements (all via freezing of suspensions) demonstrated discrepancies consistent with previous reports of the instability of its protein aggregates that appear to make it less suitable as a calibration INP at these temperatures. For Argentinian soil dust particles, there was excellent agreement across online and offline methods; measures ranged within one order of magnitude for INP number concentrations, active fractions and calculated active site densities over a 25 to 30°C range and 5 to 8 orders of corresponding magnitude change in number concentrations. This was also the case for all temperatures warmer than −25°C in Tunisian dust experiments. In contrast, discrepancies in measurements of INP concentrations or active site densities exceeded two orders of magnitude across a broad temperature range for illite NX, and divergent activation spectra between online and offline measurements found at warmer than −25°C in a previous study were replicated. Discrepancies also exceeded two orders of magnitude at temperatures of −20 to −25°C for K-feldspar, but these coincided with the range of temperatures where INP concentrations increase rapidly at approximately an order of magnitude per 2°C cooling for K-feldspar.

These few discrepancies did not outweigh the overall positive outcomes of the workshop activity, nor the future utility of this data set or future similar efforts for resolving remaining measurement issues. Measurements of the same materials were repeatable over the time of the workshop and demonstrated strong consistency with prior studies, as reflected by agreement of data broadly with parameterizations of different specific or general (e.g., soil dust) aerosol types. The divergent measurements of the INP activity of illite NX by online and offline methods was not repeated for other particle types, and the Snomax® data demonstrated that, at least for a biological INP type, there is no expected measurement bias between bulk offline versus online freezing methods to as warm as −10°C. Since particle size ranges were limited for this workshop, it can be expected that for atmospheric populations of INPs, measurement discrepancies will appear due to the different capabilities of methods for sampling the full aerosol size distribution, or due to limitations on achieving sufficient water supersaturations to fully capture immersion freezing in online instruments. Overall, this workshop presents an improved picture of present capabilities for measuring INPs than in past workshops, and provides direction toward addressing remaining measurement issues.

Paul J. DeMott et al.
Interactive discussion
Status: final response (author comments only)
Status: final response (author comments only)
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Paul J. DeMott et al.
Data sets

INP and aerosol size distribution data from the FIN02 campaign in March 2015 P. J. DeMott

Paul J. DeMott et al.
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Short summary
The ability to measure ice nucleating particles is vital to quantifying their role in affecting clouds and precipitation. Methods for measuring droplet freezing were compared while co-sampling relevant particle types. Measurement correspondence was very good for ice nucleating particles of bacterial and natural soil origin, and somewhat more disparate for those of mineral origin. Results reflect recently improved capabilities and provide direction toward addressing remaining measurement issues.
The ability to measure ice nucleating particles is vital to quantifying their role in affecting...