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Formation of ice particles through nucleation in the mesosphere

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Title: Formation of ice particles through nucleation in the mesosphere
Authors: Tanaka, Kyoko K. Browse this author
Mann, Ingrid Browse this author
Kimura, Yuki Browse this author →KAKEN DB
Issue Date: 28-Apr-2022
Publisher: Copernicus Publications
Journal Title: Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
Volume: 22
Issue: 8
Start Page: 5639
End Page: 5650
Publisher DOI: 10.5194/acp-22-5639-2022
Abstract: Observations of polar mesospheric clouds have revealed the presence of solid ice particles in the upper mesosphere at high latitudes; however, their formation mechanism remains uncertain. In this study, we investigated the formation process of ice particles through nucleation from small amounts of water vapor at low temperatures. Previous studies that used classical nucleation theory have shown that amorphous solid water particles can nucleate homogeneously at conditions that are present in the mesosphere. However, the rate predictions for water in classical nucleation theory disagree with experimental measurements by several orders of magnitude. We adopted a semi-phenomenological model for the nucleation process, which corrects the evaluation of the molecular cluster formation energy using the second virial coefficient, which agrees with both experiments and molecular dynamics simulations. To calculate the nucleation process, we applied atmospheric conditions for the temperature, pressure, numerical density of dust grains, and cooling rate. The results indicate that homogeneous water nucleation is extremely unlikely to occur in the mesosphere, while heterogeneous nucleation occurs effectively. Dust grains generated by meteor ablation can serve as nuclei for heterogeneous nucleation. We also showed that the ice can form directly in a crystalline state, rather than an amorphous state.
Type: article
Appears in Collections:低温科学研究所 (Institute of Low Temperature Science) > 雑誌発表論文等 (Peer-reviewed Journal Articles, etc)

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