Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences



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Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Jay Kroll

Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Jay Kroll

Photon and Water Mediated Sulfur Chemistry in Planetary Atmospheres

Jay Kroll - 3rd Year Graduate Student, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Sulfur compounds have been observed in the atmospheres of a number of planetary bodies in our solar system including Earth and Venus. The global cloud cover on Venus located at an altitude between 50 and 80 kilometers is composed primarily of sulfuric acid (H2SO4) and water. Planetary photochemical models have attempted to explain observations of sulfuric acid and sulfur oxides with significant discrepancies remaining between models and observation. I will report on recent laboratory studies attempting to measure the kinetics of reactions of SO2 and water to form sulfurous acid and progress made in instrument development.

Jointly sponsored by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, CIRES, and the Environmental Program

2015-02-02
 
 
 
 
 
NOSB 2015

NOSB 2015

The National Ocean Sciences Bowl Colorado Regional Competition for high school students will take place at the University of Colorado Boulder. If you would like to bring a team or volunteer for this fun and exciting event, please contact Amanda Morton at ciresoutreach@colorado.edu .

date

Saturday, February 7, 2015
2015-02-07
 
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Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Jordan Krechmer

Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Jordan Krechmer

Jointly sponsored by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, CIRES, and the Environmental Program

Formation of Low Volatility Compounds and SOA from Isoprene Oxidation without IEPOX uptake

Jordan Krechmer - 3rd Year Graduate Studentl, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Many of the sources and formation mechanisms of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) are still poorly understood. In this talk, I will present evidence of gas-phase low volatility organic compounds (LVOC), produced from the OH oxidation of isoprene hydroxy hydroperoxide (ISOPOOH), condensing and forming secondary organic aerosol (SOA) during the Caltech FIXCIT chamber study. Decreases in LVOC concentrations directly corresponded to the appearance and growth in organic aerosol, indicating that LVOC were condensing and forming SOA (at OA levels below 1 mg m-3) with a wall-loss corrected mass yield of roughly 1.5% (from isoprene). This previously uncharacterized formation pathway from isoprene could account for up to 8.0 Tg yr-1 of SOA, or 5% of the estimated global SOA source. The experimental conditions and AMS SOA spectrum indicate that SOA formation in this study is separate and not explained by previously described IEPOX uptake. Condensing species have 4-5 carbons and volatilities consistent with multiple hydroxyl groups, as well as carbonyl and possibly hydroperoxide groups. These species are not extremely low volatility VOCs (ELVOC) as previously observed from monoterpene oxidation by O3, but most likely LVOC with saturation concentrations ranging from 10-2 to 10­mg m-3. Their ability to condense at low OA levels at room temperature and to grow nanoparticles indicate that their importance may be largest in environments with lower OA concentrations. The same LVOC compounds were observed in the atmosphere during the SOAS campaign in the SE US. The results of efforts to extract mechanistic information from an ion mobility spectrometer-mass spectrometer (IMS-MS) during the SOAS field study and subsequent laboratory work will also be presented.

location

CIRES Fellows Room, Ekeley S274
2015-02-09
 
 
 
 
ECEE Seminar - Dustin Schroeder

ECEE Seminar - Dustin Schroeder

Using Airborne Radar Sounding to Characterize Subglacial Boundary Conditions

Dustin Schroeder - Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology

The basal morphology, lithology, and hydrology of ice-sheets and glaciers can exert strong, evendominating, control on their evolution, stability, and sea level contribution. However, the scales at which thephysical processes and observable signatures of this control occur are typically smaller than the spatialresolutions achievable using ice penetrating radar. Further, the strength of calibrated radar bed echo returns is acombination of both the material and geometric properties of the ice/bed interface. This ambiguity in thecontribution of material and geometric bed properties, along with uncertainty in englacial attenuation fromunderconstrained ice temperature and chemistry, also makes definitive assessment of basal conditions fromecho strengths difficult. To address these challenges in interpreting geometric and material bed properties atglaciologically relevant scales, new approaches have been developed that exploit the echo character and spatialpattern of sounding radar bed returns. The application of these techniques to a radar sounding survey ofThwaites Glacier, West Antarctica, shows how the information in the along-track scattering function of the bedcan be used to assess the extent and geometry of distributed water across the catchment and detect the transitionof the water system from distributed canals to concentrated channels. This information can also be used toconstrain the morphology of basal bedforms to infer the distribution of deformable sediments and crystallinebedrock. Finally, models of radar return strength and subglacial water routing can be compared to infer thedistribution of geothermal heat flux and interpret its observed heterogeneity in the context of regionalvolcanism.

Dusty is a Radar Geophysicist and Systems Engineering in the Radar Science and Engineering Sectionat JPL. He earned a PhD in Geophysics from the University of Texas Institute for Geophysics, where he was anNSF Graduate Research Fellow. He received his B.S. in Electrical Engineering and B.A. in Physics withminors in Mathematics and Philosophy from Bucknell University in 2007. At UTIG, he served as the lead RFfield engineer during three three-month Antarctic field seasons with the ICECAP international airbornegeophysical survey of East Antarctica and NASA's Operation Ice Bridge. He has also participated in a range ofprojects, proposal, and working groups for developing radar sounders in support of the JUICE and EuropaClipper missions. Dusty also serves as the Co-Chair of the Earth and Space Science Committee for the NationalScience Olympiad and is the National Event Supervisor for the middle school Astronomy and Planetary Scienceevents.

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DLC Collaboratory
2015-02-13
 
 
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Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Alma Hodzic

Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Alma Hodzic

Jointly sponsored by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, CIRES, and the Environmental Program

Rethinking Secondary Organic Aerosol formation and  removal in 3D models based on explicit chemistry

Dr. Alma Hodzic, NCAR, Boulder, CO

Current secondary organic aerosol (SOA) parameterizations fail to explain the observed amounts and properties of tropospheric SOA, which results in large uncertainties in their effects on radiation and climate. We use the Generator of Explicit Chemistry and Kinetics of Organics in the Atmosphere (GECKO-A) to simulate SOA gas-phase chemistry in various environments (urban, forest, low/high NOx). Our results show that GECKO-A predicts significant SOA mass growth in urban plumes, and formation of less volatile and more soluble organic products, than predicted by parameterizations typically used in 3D models. The results also indicate that atmospheric processing of gas-phase oxidation intermediates, which are poorly represented in 3D models, can significantly modulate SOA formation and lifetime. We discuss the possible effect of dry deposition and organic photo-fragmentation reactions on condensable organic vapors and SOA. We derive new parameterizations that reproduce GECKO-A behavior in terms of volatility, yields and solubility for use in 3D models. These parameterizations are applied at regional and global scales to re-evaluate SOA concentrations, burden and removal.

location

CIRES Fellows Room, Ekeley S274
2015-02-16
 
 
Investigate Climate Change Impacts in the Southwest

Investigate Climate Change Impacts in the Southwest

Please join us for an interactive exploration of Southwest climate change science and education.

What: Investigate Climate Change Impacts in the Southwest

When: Wednesday, February 18, 2015 from 5:00 PM to 6:45 PM (MST)

Where: University of Colorado, Boulder, CIRES Auditorium Room 338

Please RSVP here (encouraged but not required)

This free NASA-sponsored live event will examine climate impacts in the Southwest.   A Q&A period with local climate scientists and educators will follow an interactive virtual presentation by Dr. Fred Lipschultz, from the US Global Change Research Program, and an introduction to regionally focused teaching and citizen science resources by Dr. Minda Berbeco of the National Center for Science Education. We will accommodate up to 100 participants.

The National Climate Assessment summarizes the impacts of climate change on the United States, including aspects of earth science, biology, human health, engineering, technology, economics, and policy. Since the National Climate Assessment incorporates many disciplines, connections to standards may be found across the curriculum.  Join us to explore how this cutting-edge regional climate science can be integrated with your own classroom practice.

Your hosts:

Susan Sullivan, CIRES Education and Outreach

Teri Eastburn, UCAR Center for Science Education

Katya Hafich, CU Learn More About Climate

RSVP here

Directions to CIRES

location

CIRES Auditorium, Rm 338
2015-02-18
 
Investigate Climate Change Impacts in the Southwest

Investigate Climate Change Impacts in the Southwest

Please join us for an interactive exploration of Southwest climate change science and education.

What: Investigate Climate Change Impacts in the Southwest

When: Wednesday, February 18, 2015 from 5:00 PM to 6:45 PM (MST)

Where: University of Colorado, Boulder, CIRES Auditorium Room 338

Please RSVP here (encouraged but not required)

This free NASA-sponsored live event will examine climate impacts in the Southwest.   A Q&A period with local climate scientists and educators will follow an interactive virtual presentation by Dr. Fred Lipschultz, from the US Global Change Research Program, and an introduction to regionally focused teaching and citizen science resources by Dr. Minda Berbeco of the National Center for Science Education. We will accommodate up to 100 participants.

The National Climate Assessment summarizes the impacts of climate change on the United States, including aspects of earth science, biology, human health, engineering, technology, economics, and policy. Since the National Climate Assessment incorporates many disciplines, connections to standards may be found across the curriculum.  Join us to explore how this cutting-edge regional climate science can be integrated with your own classroom practice.

Your hosts:

Susan Sullivan, CIRES Education and Outreach

Teri Eastburn, UCAR Center for Science Education

Katya Hafich, CU Learn More About Climate

RSVP here

Directions to CIRES

location

CIRES Auditorium, Rm 338
2015-02-18
 
 
 
 
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Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Peter H. McMurry

Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Peter H. McMurry

Jointly sponsored by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, CIRES, and the Environmental Program

Chemical Nucleation in the Atmosphere: Recent Discoveries Enabled by Instrument Development
Peter H. McMurry - Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Minnesota

Observations throughout the atmosphere have shown that nucleation from the gas phase occurs every few days and that nucleation rates are correlated with collision rates of sulfuric acid vapor molecules. Our research team, which includes the groups led by Drs. Fred Eisele, Jim Smith and David Hanson, have developed three new instruments to study atmospheric nucleation: the Cluster Chemical Ionization Mass Spectrometer (Cluster CIMS), for measuring the concentrations of neutral molecular clusters formed by nucleation (1-10 ppqv sensitivity); the DEG Scanning Mobility Particle Spectrometer (DEG SMPS), for measuring the number distributions of freshly nucleated particles as small as 1 nm; and the Ambient Pressure Proton Transfer Mass Spectrometer (AmPMS), for measuring concentrations of basic organic and inorganic gases that react with and stabilize sulfuric acid-containing clusters (1pptv sensitivity).

Together, these instruments allow measurements of precursor vapor concentrations and the complete particle number distribution down to 1 molecule. This information is providing us with a new understanding of the physical and chemical processes that lead to nucleation.

Atmospheric observations and laboratory studies have confirmed that nucleation occurs due to a sequence of acid-base reactions that form stable clusters that subsequently grow by the further uptake of organic and inorganic compounds. Evaporation of sulfuric acid from clusters that contain 1 to 3 sulfuric acid molecules is the primary bottleneck to nucleation. Our measurements have provided estimates of these evaporation rates, leading to a simple analytic expression for nucleation rates that is in reasonable agreement with observations.

The seminar will describe the bases for these conclusions.

location

CIRES Fellows Room, Ekeley S274
2015-02-23
 
CSTPR Noontime Seminar: Elizabeth McNie

CSTPR Noontime Seminar: Elizabeth McNie

When Basic or Applied is Not Enough: Utilizing a Typology of Research Activities and Attributes to Inform Usable Science

by Elizabeth McNie, Western Water Assessment, CU Boulder

 

location

CSTPR Conference Room, 1333 Grandview Avenue

Event Type

CSTPR
2015-02-23
 
Special Seminar: Ben Livneh

Special Seminar: Ben Livneh

Quantifying the Impacts of Land Cover and Climatic Change on Water Resources through a Multi-scale Hydrological Modeling Framework

A growing body of research has shown that the hydrologic cycle may be intensifying due to anthropogenic climatic warming. Development and disturbances to natural watersheds can further alter historical relationships between climate and water requiring sophisticated scientific analysis to address the emerging challenges. Models provide a means of representing these complex interactions, while assimilating data across a broad spectrum of sources—in situ measurements, aerial and satellite remote sensing—to produce an integrated estimate of hydrologic responses constrained by conservation equations. This presentation will explore several examples of how hydrologic impacts of both climate change and land cover disturbance can be quantified across multiple spatial and temporal scales.

Two case studies will be presented including regional-scale drought attribution and catchment-scale response to forest disturbance and snowmelt perturbation. The first example will focus on attributing drought severity to its drivers, precipitation and temperature variability, and disentangling the relative contributions of each, making use of a multi-decadal observational data set and a physically-based macroscale (~ 50 km model grid cells) hydrologic model for the 2012 Great Plains Drought. The second example explores the hydrologic impacts of recent forest mortality caused by bark beetle outbreak and dryland dust-on-snow driven snowmelt perturbations for several catchments within the Upper Colorado River Basin. This analysis will use a fine-resolution (~ 100 m model grid cells) modeling system that assimilates dynamic vegetation data from aerial surveys and incorporates satellite estimates of disturbance, as well as dust-on-snow radiative loading. Finally, a description of future work within these theme areas will be presented to spawn discussion and highlight potential areas for collaboration.

Ben Livneh, Ph.D., is a CIRES researcher in NOAA's Earth Science Research Laboratory, Physical Sciences Division.

location

CIRES Auditorium
2015-02-24
 
 
Special Seminar: Christa Kelleher

Special Seminar: Christa Kelleher

Exploring Influences on Hydrologic Behavior from the Stream Reach to the Stream Network Scale: Integrating Detailed Observations, Hydrologic Modeling, and Sensitivity Analysis

Stream networks are complex systems that translate water, solutes, and nutrients from headwaters to large rivers. While our understanding of how stream networks function has been aided by larger and more extensive observational networks, complex models, and increasing computational power to integrate these pieces, we are still faced with a broad challenge: understanding key hydrologic processes at the scale at which they occur and how these processes vary across the larger stream network. To address this need, we use comparative hydrology, an approach that describes similarities and differences in hydrologic behavior in terms of the climate, vegetation, geology, and topography across different hydrologic systems. Three comparative applications at the reach, catchment, and network scales demonstrate how a combination of hydrologic modeling, sensitivity analysis, and detailed observations can be used to detect how process importance varies with physical setting. Ultimately, these types of relationships will improve our understanding of headwater and stream network functioning, and have potential to enable extrapolation of linkages between physical setting and the sensitivity of hydrologic behavior to change at regional and national scales.

Christa Kelleher is a postdoc in Duke University's Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences.

location

CIRES Auditorium
2015-02-26