Heating Up the Arctic: New Dataset Helps Scientists Understand Aerosols’ Impacts on Clouds


The Arctic is warming twice as fast as the rest of the Earth, and scientists now have more data to understand why. From Fairbanks to Barrow, Alaska, a team of DOE researchers found strong seasonal differences in the number of ice-forming particles in Arctic clouds during the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) sponsored Indirect and Semi-Direct Aerosol Campaign (ISDAC). The results provide a more accurate picture of the number and types of aerosol particles on which cloud droplets and crystals form. This campaign provided the most extensive dataset to date on the composition and behavior of arctic clouds and is expected to be extensively mined by the climate modeling community. These findings will enhance climate change predictions and modeling.


McFarquhar, G. M., S. Ghan, J. Verlinde, A. Korolev, J. W. Strapp, B. Schmid, J. Tomlinson, M. Wolde, S. D. Brooks, D. Cziczo, M. K. Dubey, J. Fan, C. Flynn, I. Gultepe, J. Hubbe, M. K. Gilles, A. Laskin, P. Lawson, R. Leaitch, P. Liu, X. Liu, D. Lubin, C. Mazzoleni, A.–M. Macdonald, R. C. Moffet, H. Morrison, M. Ovchinnikov, M. D. Shupe, D. D. Turner, S. Xie, A. Zelenyuk, K. Bae, M. Freer, and A. Glen. 2011. “Indirect and Semi-Direct Aerosol Campaign (ISDAC): The Impact of Arctic Aerosols on Clouds,” Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 92, 183–201. DOI:10.1175/2010BAMS2935.1.