Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Bioaerosols: New element in climate mystery

15.10.2004


Parisa Ariya’s accidental discovery of the power of bioaerosols to generate rapid and dramatic chemical reactions may change – at the very least alter – the course of climate science.



Ariya, a professor at McGill University’s Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, in Montreal (Canada), first made her observation in August 2001, after one of her postdoctoral fellows forgot to close the valve sealing the reaction chamber where an organic compound (containing carbon, oxygen and/or hydrogen) was reacting with ozone (the form of oxygen in the stratosphere that filters out ultraviolet radiation).

By Monday, the organic compound was gone, and several new peaks in the frequency regions for carbohydrates and proteins were found. A sludge had formed on the glass walls of the chamber. What was it? Ariya deduced that airborne micro-organisms in the laboratory had found their way into the chamber, consumed the organic compound and produced new aerosols in their reaction both with the compound and the ozone.


Something told Ariya that such reactions, which would take place all the time in the natural world – given that there are always bioaerosols, living or dead organic compounds in the air, such as dust, bacteria, pollen, leaf dust, viruses – might be significant in understanding climate and climate change. "Fortunately, we didn’t discard it and I was crazy enough to pursue further experiments," recalls Ariya. "What tipped me to the importance of this accident was the speed and efficiency of the chemical reactions."

Since beginning her research, Ariya has found that similar to inorganic aerosols, (such as volcanic dust), bioaerosols are capable of forming clouds. She’s examining the role they play in the interfaces between snow and air, snow and water and fog and clouds. She notes that bioaerosols were long suggested to play a role as ice nuclei for cloud formation, yet their impact on driving chemistry and impact of chemical reactions on physics of atmosphere were not considered.

What’s most significant about Ariya’s work is how, until now, no scientist has included bioaerosols in climate research because their numbers were considered insignificant as compared to inorganic aerosols.

Sylvain-Jacques Desjardins | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mcgill.ca

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Using tree-fall patterns to calculate tornado wind speed
25.06.2018 | Ecological Society of America

nachricht Fast rising bedrock below West Antarctica reveals an extremely fluid Earth mantle
22.06.2018 | Technical University of Denmark

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Superconducting vortices quantize ordinary metal

Russian researchers together with their French colleagues discovered that a genuine feature of superconductors -- quantum Abrikosov vortices of supercurrent -- can also exist in an ordinary nonsuperconducting metal put into contact with a superconductor. The observation of these vortices provides direct evidence of induced quantum coherence. The pioneering experimental observation was supported by a first-ever numerical model that describes the induced vortices in finer detail.

These fundamental results, published in the journal Nature Communications, enable a better understanding and description of the processes occurring at the...

Im Focus: Temperature-controlled fiber-optic light source with liquid core

In a recent publication in the renowned journal Optica, scientists of Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology (Leibniz IPHT) in Jena showed that they can accurately control the optical properties of liquid-core fiber lasers and therefore their spectral band width by temperature and pressure tuning.

Already last year, the researchers provided experimental proof of a new dynamic of hybrid solitons– temporally and spectrally stationary light waves resulting...

Im Focus: Overdosing on Calcium

Nano crystals impact stem cell fate during bone formation

Scientists from the University of Freiburg and the University of Basel identified a master regulator for bone regeneration. Prasad Shastri, Professor of...

Im Focus: AchemAsia 2019 will take place in Shanghai

Moving into its fourth decade, AchemAsia is setting out for new horizons: The International Expo and Innovation Forum for Sustainable Chemical Production will take place from 21-23 May 2019 in Shanghai, China. With an updated event profile, the eleventh edition focusses on topics that are especially relevant for the Chinese process industry, putting a strong emphasis on sustainability and innovation.

Founded in 1989 as a spin-off of ACHEMA to cater to the needs of China’s then developing industry, AchemAsia has since grown into a platform where the latest...

Im Focus: First real-time test of Li-Fi utilization for the industrial Internet of Things

The BMBF-funded OWICELLS project was successfully completed with a final presentation at the BMW plant in Munich. The presentation demonstrated a Li-Fi communication with a mobile robot, while the robot carried out usual production processes (welding, moving and testing parts) in a 5x5m² production cell. The robust, optical wireless transmission is based on spatial diversity; in other words, data is sent and received simultaneously by several LEDs and several photodiodes. The system can transmit data at more than 100 Mbit/s and five milliseconds latency.

Modern production technologies in the automobile industry must become more flexible in order to fulfil individual customer requirements.

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Munich conference on asteroid detection, tracking and defense

13.06.2018 | Event News

2nd International Baltic Earth Conference in Denmark: “The Baltic Sea region in Transition”

08.06.2018 | Event News

ISEKI_Food 2018: Conference with Holistic View of Food Production

05.06.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Rapid water formation in diffuse interstellar clouds

25.06.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Using tree-fall patterns to calculate tornado wind speed

25.06.2018 | Earth Sciences

'Stealth' material hides hot objects from infrared eyes

25.06.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>