To the top

Page Manager: Webmaster
Last update: 9/11/2012 3:13 PM

Tell a friend about this page
Print version

Secondary organic aerosol… - University of Gothenburg, Sweden Till startsida
To content Read more about how we use cookies on

Secondary organic aerosol reduced by mixture of atmospheric vapours

Journal article
Authors Gordon McFiggans
Thomas F. Mentel
Jürgen Wildt
Pullinen, Iida
Sungah Kang
Einhard Kleist
Sebastian Schmitt
Monika Springer
Ralf Tillmann
Cheng Wu
Defeng Zhao
Mattias Hallquist
Cameron Faxon
Michael Le Breton
Åsa M. Hallquist
David Simpson
Robert Bergström
et al.
Published in Nature
Volume 565
Issue 7741
Pages 587-593
ISSN 0028-0836
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Chemistry and Molecular Biology
Pages 587-593
Language en
Subject categories Chemical Sciences, Analytical Chemistry, Physical Chemistry, Other Chemistry Topics, Earth and Related Environmental Sciences, Climate Research, Environmental Sciences, Environmental chemistry, Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences


Secondary organic aerosol contributes to the atmospheric particle burden with implications for air quality and climate. Biogenic volatile organic compounds such as terpenoids emitted from plants are important secondary organic aerosol precursors with isoprene dominating the emissions of biogenic volatile organic compounds globally. However, the particle mass from isoprene oxidation is generally modest compared to that of other terpenoids. Here we show that isoprene, carbon monoxide and methane can each suppress the instantaneous mass and the overall mass yield derived from monoterpenes in mixtures of atmospheric vapours. We find that isoprene 'scavenges' hydroxyl radicals, preventing their reaction with monoterpenes, and the resulting isoprene peroxy radicals scavenge highly oxygenated monoterpene products. These effects reduce the yield of low-volatility products that would otherwise form secondary organic aerosol. Global model calculations indicate that oxidant and product scavenging can operate effectively in the real atmosphere. Thus highly reactive compounds (such as isoprene) that produce a modest amount of aerosol are not necessarily net producers of secondary organic particle mass and their oxidation in mixtures of atmospheric vapours can suppress both particle number and mass of secondary organic aerosol. We suggest that formation mechanisms of secondary organic aerosol in the atmosphere need to be considered more realistically, accounting for mechanistic interactions between the products of oxidizing precursor molecules (as is recognized to be necessary when modelling ozone production).

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

The University of Gothenburg uses cookies to provide you with the best possible user experience. By continuing on this website, you approve of our use of cookies.  What are cookies?