Case Study
Ice Nuclei Research – PCVI
cloud chamber experiments

PCVI

A unique deployment of the PCVI involves coupling it to a new ice nucleation chamber as well as a cloud condensation nucleus counter CCN (see Hiranuma et al. (2011) AMTD reference). Ice nuclei, particles that can form ice crystals in cirrus and other cold-temperature clouds, are poorly understood in our atmosphere but have important climate impacts. Tools like the PCVI allow careful studies of particle ice nucleating properties as a function of particle size.

Dan Cziczo
Professor of Chemistry
MIT Program in Atmospheres, Oceans and Climate

SEMS

We use the SEMS as a means to prepare aerosol for our cloud chamber experiments. The ability of the SEMS to separate based on mobility allows us to take one of the variables we find in the atmosphere – particulate size – out of the equations. When particles are then ‘activated’ into droplets or ice crystals we can interpret the results as due to composition or morphology without the task of decoupling particle volume or surface area (see Hiranuma et al. (2011) AMTD reference).

Dan Cziczo
Professor of Chemistry
MIT Program in Atmospheres, Oceans and Climate

Pumped Counterflow Virtual Impactor

Pumped Counterflow Virtual Impactor