Innovative instruments characterization and techniques development

Objectives and expected results 


One of the most intense research activity carried on by the Environmental Physics Group of Genoa University is the development of innovative techniques and instruments for the analysis of atmospheric aerosol and its properties.  ChAMBRe will be used as a test bench work to get a full characterization of such instruments. 
 
MWAA - Aerosol optical properties: focus on carbonaceous species.
 
The instrumental development efforts at the Environmental Physics Laboratory of the Physics Department of the University of Genoa, recently resulted in a new Multi Wavelength Absorbance analyzer (Massabò et al, JAS 2013; Massabò et al. Atmos. Envir, 2015) which measure the light absorption on aerosol loaded filters at five wavelengths from UV (absorption bands of organic compounds, mineral dust) to near infrared (carbon soot, ...). Furthermore, a new data reduction methodology has been introduced to disentangle the concentration of Black and Brown carbon in atmospheric aerosol. The same approach can be used to characterize other optically-active species (like dust or possibly some biogenic compounds). This is an important but difficult task in particular in a field experiment. The atmospheric chamber is an effective tool to produce known aerosol mixtures and to test the performance of the optical technology. Actually, there are on-going collaborations  on this particular issue and with the following program:
 
• Measurement of  the absorption properties in the near-UV spectrum IR of samples of atmospheric aerosols generated or injected into the atmospheric simulation chamber in  controlled atmospheric conditions (relative atmospheric humidity and age varied as needed ...)
 
•  Measurement of  the absorption properties in the near-UV spectrum IR atmospheric aerosol samples collected in the field, representative of the conditions of natural aerosols in real atmosphere (humidity variable for different chemical and physical conditions aging ...)
 
• Combining measurements in simulation chamber and in the field to establish a parameterization of absorption properties depending on the nature of the aerosol (chemical composition, size ...) and atmospheric conditions.

• Development/upgrade of the MWAA toward a white-light spectrometer.