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Institute of Energy and Climate Research

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Aerosols are important components of the air, which play an important role for atmospheric chemistry, climate and human health. The groups "Heterogeneous Reactions" and "Stabile Isotopes in Aerosols" in the section "Aerosols" investigate together the sources, the chemical composition and the microphysical properties of atmospheric aerosols under different aspects. Herein we mainly focus on process studies of secondary aerosol formation and chemical ageing of atmospheric aerosols, which we perform in simulation chambers (SAPHIR, JPAC), in field campaigns or on the airship Zeppelin NT. Besides classical concentration and size distribution measurements of particles, we are specializing in mass spectrometric methods, which span from the measurement of natural ions (API-TOF), over reactive as well as oxygenated hydrocarbons (PTR-MS) and particulate matter (AMS) to the measurements of natural stable isotopes.

The section "Aerosols" together with the group "Ecosystem Dynamics - Spurengas Austausch" (IGB-2) introduced new ways of investigating secondary aerosol formation by oxidation of plant emissions (Kiendler-Scharr et al. 2009, Mentel et al. 2009). Both groups are intensively contributing to the PEGASOS project.