Publication Abstracts

Ackerman et al. 1994

Ackerman, A.S., O.B. Toon, and P.V. Hobbs, 1994: Reassessing the dependence of cloud condensation nucleus concentration on formation rate. Nature, 367, 445-447, doi:10.1038/367445a0.

Marine stratocumulus clouds play an important role in the Earth's radiation budget. The albedo of these clouds depends on the cloud droplet size distribution, and therefore, in part, on the number density of cloud condensation nuclei (CCN). It has been postulated that a positive feedback loop between increased CCN concentrations and decreased drizzle gives rise to a bistable system, in which there are two equilibrium CCN concentration regimes. According to this model, CCN concentration is only weakly dependent on the CCN production rate within the stable regimes, but very strongly dependent on this rate in the transition region between the regimes. If correct, this strong dependence implies that a small increase in the production of CCN over the oceans could drastically increase the planetary albedo. Using a more sophisticated model than that used previously, we find no evidence for bistability. However, we find that CCN concentrations are generally strongly dependent on their production rate, so that changes in the latter would influence the Earth's albedo. We also find that the timescale for reducing high CCN concentrations can be as long as several days, which implies that high CCN concentrations can persist in clouds advected to regions of lower CCN production rate.

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BibTeX Citation

@article{ac05000n,
  author={Ackerman, A. S. and Toon, O. B. and Hobbs, P. V.},
  title={Reassessing the dependence of cloud condensation nucleus concentration on formation rate},
  year={1994},
  journal={Nature},
  volume={367},
  pages={445--447},
  doi={10.1038/367445a0},
}

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RIS Citation

TY  - JOUR
ID  - ac05000n
AU  - Ackerman, A. S.
AU  - Toon, O. B.
AU  - Hobbs, P. V.
PY  - 1994
TI  - Reassessing the dependence of cloud condensation nucleus concentration on formation rate
JA  - Nature
VL  - 367
SP  - 445
EP  - 447
DO  - 10.1038/367445a0
ER  -

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