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Hygroscopic behavior of atmospherically relevant water-soluble carboxylic salts and their influence on the water uptake of ammonium sulfate

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Author(s): Z. J. Wu | A. Nowak | L. Poulain | H. Herrmann | A. Wiedensohler

Journal: Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Discussions
ISSN 1680-7367

Volume: 11;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 7693;
Date: 2011;
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ABSTRACT
The hygroscopic behavior of atmospherically relevant water-soluble carboxylic salts and their effects on ammonium sulfate was investigated using a hygroscopicity tandem differential mobility analyzer (H-TDMA). No hygroscopic growth is observed for sodium oxalate, while ammonium oxalate shows slight growth (growth factor = 1.05 at 90%). The growth factors at 90% RH for sodium acetate, sodium malonate, sodium succinate, sodium tartrate, ammonium tartrate, sodium pyruvate, sodium maleate, and humic acid sodium salt are 1.79, 1.78, 1.69, 1.54, 1.29, 1.70, 1.78, and 1.19, respectively. The mixtures of organic salts with ammonium sulfate, which are prepared simulating the atmospheric aerosols, are determined. A clear shift in DRH of mixture to lower RH is observed with increasing organic mass fraction. Above RH = 80%, the humidograms of the different mixtures are quite close to that of pure ammonium sulfate. Köhler theory is used to predict the effective hygroscopicity parameter, κ, for mixtures at 90% RH. The results show that Köhler theory underestimated κ for mixtures without considering the water solubility of ammonium oxalate. However, if the water solubility of ammonium oxalate is taken into account, the results show a much better agreement with those derived from H-TDMA measurements.
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