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ACP | Articles | Volume 19, issue 5
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 2871-2879, 2019
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-19-2871-2019
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Special issue: Layered phenomena in the mesopause region (ACP/AMT inter-journal...

Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 2871-2879, 2019
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-19-2871-2019
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 06 Mar 2019

Research article | 06 Mar 2019

Unravelling the microphysics of polar mesospheric cloud formation

Denis Duft et al.
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Related subject area  
Subject: Clouds and Precipitation | Research Activity: Laboratory Studies | Altitude Range: Mesosphere | Science Focus: Physics (physical properties and processes)
The impact of solar radiation on polar mesospheric ice particle formation
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Cited articles  
Bardeen, C. G., Toon, O. B., Jensen, E. J., Marsh, D. R., and Harvey, V. L.: Numerical simulations of the three-dimensional distribution of meteoric dust in the mesosphere and upper stratosphere, J. Geophys. Res.-Atmos., 113, D17202, https://doi.org/10.1029/2007JD009515, 2008. 
Berger, U. and Lübken, F.-J.: Trends in mesospheric ice layers in the Northern Hemisphere during 1961–2013, J. Geophys. Res.-Atmos., 120, 11277–11298, 2015. 
Bickes, R. W., Duquette, G., van den Meijdenberg, C. J. N., Rulis, A. M., Scoles, G., and Smith, K. M.: Molecular Beam Scattering Experiments with Polar Molecules: Measurement of Differential Collision Cross Sections for H2O+H2, He, Ne, Ar, H2O and NH3+H2, He, NH3, J. Phys. B-At. Mol. Opt., 8, 3034–3043, 1975. 
Brown, D. E., George, S. M., Huang, C., Wong, E. K. L., Rider, K. B., Smith, R. S., and Kay, B. D.: H2O Condensation Coefficient and Refractive Index for Vapor-Deposited Ice from Molecular Beam and Optical Interference Measurements, J. Phys. Chem., 100, 4988–4995, 1996. 
Carrillo-Sánchez, J. D., Nesvorný, D., Pokorný, P., Janches, D., and Plane, J. M. C.: Sources of cosmic dust in the Earth's atmosphere, Geophys. Res. Lett., 43, 11979–11986, 2016. 
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How ice particles form in polar mesospheric clouds is still a challenging question. We measured the water adsorption and onset conditions for ice growth on meteoric smoke analogue particles in the laboratory. We find that the particles activate by growth of amorphous ice and at much warmer conditions than previously assumed, affirming meteoric smoke as likely seeds in mesospheric ice clouds. We propose an ice-activation model and show that the particle charge does not play a significant role.
How ice particles form in polar mesospheric clouds is still a challenging question. We measured...
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