The sources of primary and secondary aerosols in the Arctic are still poorly known. A number of surface seawater samples - with varying degrees of Arctic riverine and sea ice influences - were used in a sea spray generation chamber to test them for their potential to produce sea spray aerosols (SSA) and cloud condensation nuclei (CCN). Our interdisciplinary data showed that both sea salt and organic matter (OM) significantly influenced the SSA production. The number concentration of SSA in the coastal samples was negatively correlated with salinity and positively correlated with a number of OM tracers, including dissolved and chromophoric organic carbon (DOC, CDOM), marine microgels and chlorophyll a (Chl-a) but not for viral and bacterial abundances; indicating that OM of riverine origin enhances primary aerosol production. When all samples were considered, transparent exopolymer particles (TEP) were found to be the best indicator correlating positively with the ratio number concentration of SSA/salinity. CCN efficiency was not observed to differ between the SSA from the various samples, despite differences in organic characteristics. It is suggested that the large amount of freshwater from river runoff have a substantial impact on primary aerosols production mechanisms, possibly affecting the cloud radiative forcing.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Chemistry