Journal article

SO2 oxidation products other than H2SO4 as a trigger of new particle formation – Part 1: Laboratory investigations

Berndt T, Stratmann F, Bräsel S, Heintzenberg J, Laaksonen A, Kulmala M ...see all

Atmos. Chem. Phys. J1 - ACP, vol. 8, issue 21 (2008) pp. 9761-9782

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Mechanistic investigations of atmospheric H2SO4 particle formation
have been performed in a laboratory study taking either H2SO4 from
a liquid reservoir or using the gas-phase reaction of OH radicals
with SO2. Applying both approaches for H2SO4 generation simultaneously
it was found that H2SO4 evaporated from the liquid reservoir acts
considerably less effective for the process of particle formation
and growth than the products originating from the reaction of OH
radicals with SO2. Furthermore, for NOx concentrations >5�1011 molecule
cm-3 the formation of new particles from the reaction of OH radicals
with SO2 is inhibited. This suggests that substances other than H2SO4
(potentially products from sulphur-containing peroxy radicals) trigger
lower tropospheric new particle formation and growth. The currently
accepted mechanism for SO2 gas-phase oxidation does not consider
the formation of such substances. The analysis of new particle formation
for different reaction conditions in our experiment suggests that
a contribution of impurities to the nucleation process is unlikely.

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  • T Berndt

  • F Stratmann

  • S Bräsel

  • J Heintzenberg

  • A Laaksonen

  • M Kulmala

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