Aerosol chemistry: Climate study achieves full bloom

Researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography and the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at University of California, San Diego succeeded in creating the largest phytoplankton bloom in a wave flume in history as part of a groundbreaking experiment to understand the effects of natural particles on the atmosphere. The Center for Aerosol Impacts on Climate and the Environment (CAICE) cultivated the algae over the course of several weeks in July in a wave tank on the Scripps campus that enables them to observe ocean-atmosphere exchange processes in a controlled environment. Observations of the chemical composition of seawater and the atmosphere as the bloom evolved could break new ground in the understanding of how aerosols--tiny bits of living and inorganic matter--influence aspects of climate, especially cloud formation.

Provided by the Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Runtime: 3:26

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