Journal cover Journal topic
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 9, 5155-5236, 2009
© Author(s) 2009. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
29 Jul 2009
The formation, properties and impact of secondary organic aerosol: current and emerging issues
M. Hallquist1, J. C. Wenger2, U. Baltensperger3, Y. Rudich4, D. Simpson6,5, M. Claeys7, J. Dommen3, N. M. Donahue8, C. George9,10, A. H. Goldstein11, J. F. Hamilton12, H. Herrmann13, T. Hoffmann14, Y. Iinuma13, M. Jang15, M. E. Jenkin16, J. L. Jimenez17, A. Kiendler-Scharr18, W. Maenhaut19, G. McFiggans20, Th. F. Mentel18, A. Monod21, A. S. H. Prévôt3, J. H. Seinfeld22, J. D. Surratt23, R. Szmigielski7, and J. Wildt18 1Dept. of Chemistry, Atmospheric Science, University of Gothenburg, 412 96 Gothenburg, Sweden
2Dept. of Chemistry and Environmental Research Institute, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland
3Laboratory of Atmospheric Chemistry, Paul Scherrer Institut, 5232 Villigen PSI, Switzerland
4Dept. of Environmental Sciences, Weizmann Institute, Rehovot 76100, Israel
5EMEP MSC-W, Norwegian Meteorological Institute, P.B. 32 Blindern, 0313 Oslo, Norway
6Dept. of Radio and Space Science, Chalmers University of Technology, 41296, Gothenburg, Sweden
7Dept. of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Antwerp (Campus Drie Eiken), Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Antwerp, Belgium
8Center for Atmospheric Particle Studies, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh PA 15213, USA
9Université de Lyon, Faculté de Chimie, 69003, France
10CNRS, UMR5256, IRCELYON, Institut de recherches sur la catalyse et l'environnement de Lyon, Villeurbanne, 69626, France
11Dept. of Environmental Science, Policy and Management, University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA
12Dept. of Chemistry, University of York, Heslington, York, YO10 5DD, UK
13Leibniz-Institut für Troposphärenforschung, Permoserstrasse 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany
14Johannes Gutenberg-Universität, Institut für Anorganische und Analytische Chemie, Duesbergweg 10–14, 55128 Mainz, Germany
15Dept. of Environmental Engineering Sciences, P.O. Box 116450, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-6450, USA
16Atmospheric Chemistry Services, Okehampton, Devon, EX20 1FB, UK
17Dept. of Chemistry & Biochemistry; and CIRES, University of Colorado, UCB 216, Boulder, CO 80309-0216, USA
18Institut für Chemie und Dynamik der Geosphäre, ICG, Forschungszentrum Jülich, 52425 Jülich, Germany
19Dept. of Analytical Chemistry, Institute for Nuclear Sciences, Ghent University, Proeftuinstraat 86, 9000 Ghent, Belgium
20Centre for Atmospheric Sciences, School of Earth, Atmospheric & Environmental Sciences, University of Manchester, Simon Building, Manchester, M13 9PL, UK
21Université Aix-Marseille I, II et III, Case 29, Laboratoire Chimie Provence, UMR-CNRS 6264, 3 place Victor Hugo, 13331 Marseille Cedex 3, France
22Depts. of Chemical Engineering and Environmental Science and Engineering, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA
23Dept. of Chemistry, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA
Abstract. Secondary organic aerosol (SOA) accounts for a significant fraction of ambient tropospheric aerosol and a detailed knowledge of the formation, properties and transformation of SOA is therefore required to evaluate its impact on atmospheric processes, climate and human health. The chemical and physical processes associated with SOA formation are complex and varied, and, despite considerable progress in recent years, a quantitative and predictive understanding of SOA formation does not exist and therefore represents a major research challenge in atmospheric science. This review begins with an update on the current state of knowledge on the global SOA budget and is followed by an overview of the atmospheric degradation mechanisms for SOA precursors, gas-particle partitioning theory and the analytical techniques used to determine the chemical composition of SOA. A survey of recent laboratory, field and modeling studies is also presented. The following topical and emerging issues are highlighted and discussed in detail: molecular characterization of biogenic SOA constituents, condensed phase reactions and oligomerization, the interaction of atmospheric organic components with sulfuric acid, the chemical and photochemical processing of organics in the atmospheric aqueous phase, aerosol formation from real plant emissions, interaction of atmospheric organic components with water, thermodynamics and mixtures in atmospheric models. Finally, the major challenges ahead in laboratory, field and modeling studies of SOA are discussed and recommendations for future research directions are proposed.

Citation: Hallquist, M., Wenger, J. C., Baltensperger, U., Rudich, Y., Simpson, D., Claeys, M., Dommen, J., Donahue, N. M., George, C., Goldstein, A. H., Hamilton, J. F., Herrmann, H., Hoffmann, T., Iinuma, Y., Jang, M., Jenkin, M. E., Jimenez, J. L., Kiendler-Scharr, A., Maenhaut, W., McFiggans, G., Mentel, Th. F., Monod, A., Prévôt, A. S. H., Seinfeld, J. H., Surratt, J. D., Szmigielski, R., and Wildt, J.: The formation, properties and impact of secondary organic aerosol: current and emerging issues, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 9, 5155-5236,, 2009.
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