Global analysis of continental boundary layer new particle formation based on long-term measurements

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<p><strong>Abstract.</strong> Atmospheric new particle formation (NPF) is an important phenomenon in terms of the global particle number concentrations. Here we investigated the frequency of NPF, formation rates of 10<span class="thinspace"></span>nm particles and growth rates in the size range of 10&amp;ndash;25<span class="thinspace"></span>nm using at least one year of aerosol number size-distribution observations at 36 different locations around the world. The majority of these measurement sites are in the Northern Hemisphere. We found that the NPF frequency has a strong seasonal variability, taking place on about 30<span class="thinspace"></span>% of the days in March&amp;ndash;May and on about 10<span class="thinspace"></span>% of the days in December&amp;ndash;February. The median formation rate of 10<span class="thinspace"></span>nm particles varies by about three orders of magnitude (0.01&amp;ndash;10<span class="thinspace"></span>cm<sup>&amp;minus;3</sup><span class="thinspace"></span>s<sup>&amp;minus;1</sup>) and the growth rate by about an order of magnitude (1&amp;ndash;10<span class="thinspace"></span>nm<span class="thinspace"></span>h<sup>&amp;minus;1</sup>). The smallest values of both formation and growth rates were observed at polar sites and the largest ones in urban environments or anthropogenically influenced rural sites. The correlation between the NPF event frequency and the particle formation and growth rate was at best moderate between the different measurement sites, as well as between the sites belonging to a certain environmental regime. For a better understanding of atmospheric NPF and its regional importance, we would need more observational data from different urban areas in practically all parts of the world, from additional remote and rural locations in Northern America, Asia and most of the Southern Hemisphere (especially Australia), from polar areas, and from at least a few locations over the oceans.</p>




Nieminen, T., Kerminen, V. M., Petäjä, T., Aalto, P. P., Arshinov, M., Asmi, E., … Kulmala, M. (2018). Global analysis of continental boundary layer new particle formation based on long-term measurements. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 18(19), 14737–14756.

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