What: Wintertime INvestigation of Transport, Emissions, and Reactivity (WINTER)

When: January - March 2015

Where: mid-Atlantic region

How: NSF/NCAR C-130 aircraft

Who: Principal Investigators:

Joel Thornton, University of Washington
Steve Brown, NOAA ESRL CSD
James M. Roberts, NOAA ESRL CSD
Lyatt Jaegle, University of Washington
Ronald Cohen, UC Berkeley
Jose Jimenez, CU Boulder
Rodney Weber, Georgia Tech
Jack Dibb, University of New Hampshire

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Emission of anthropogenic pollutants to the atmosphere is a year-round phenomenon. Atmospheric chemical transformations, which play a large role in defining the impact associated with these emissions, have a strong seasonal dependence. In the warmer and more photochemically active summer months, strong oxidant formation leads to the rapid production of multiple secondary pollutants, such as ozone and organic aerosol. In winter, short-lived primary pollutants (NOx, VOC, SO2) oxidize more slowly, often driven by multiphase processes, and consequently affect wider geographic areas downwind of source regions. Not only are the processes uncertain, but there is little data from field intensives to constrain models. Consequently, relatively little is known about budgets of primary pollutants and their ultimate fate during the winter season.

The large majority of field intensives in polluted regions have focused principally on understanding emissions, transformation and transport in warmer conditions. The WINTER study is an NSF funded project that supports collaborative research between investigators at University of Washington and NOAA that will provide detailed, aircraft-based measurements to address the seasonality of these processes. The NSF C-130 will be based in the mid-Atlantic region over six weeks in January-February 2015. Flights will take place on scales ranging from investigations of local sources (urban, power plant, agricultural) to longer-range transport. Results will critically inform atmospheric chemical models for ozone, aerosols and a variety of other primary and secondary pollutants.

For further information, download the WINTER White Paper