Physical and chemical characterization of black and brown carbon aerosol

Light-absorbing carbonaceous aerosol, including black (BC) and brown carbon (BrC), constitute a large fraction of atmospheric aerosol and greatly affect the troposphere atmospheric photochemistry and global climate. These effects deeply depend on the physical (e.g., size, maxing state, absorptivity) and chemical properties (e.g., species composition, oxidation state and lifetime, etc.) of black and brown carbon.

We have conducted many filed and laboratory studies to investigate the physical and chemical properties of BC and BrC. For example, we have made filed studies to investigate the size distribution, maxing state, absorption enhancement, sources and oxidation process of BC from various environment (e.g., plateau, urban and rural sites) and estimated its radiative forcing effect. We also applied the HPLC-PDA-HRMS technique to study the optical properties, molecular and structure composition, and their quantitative relationships of BrC from both source emissions (e.g., biomass burning and coal combustion) and ambient aerosol. These fundamental insights would greatly deepen our understanding of the climatic and environmental role of light-absorbing carbonaceous aerosol.