skip to main content


Title: Organosulfate Formation in Proxies for Aged Sea Spray Aerosol: Reactive Uptake of Isoprene Epoxydiols to Acidic Sodium Sulfate
Oxidation of isoprene, the biogenic volatile organic compound with the highest emissions globally, is a large source of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) in the atmosphere. Organosulfates, particularly methyltetrol sulfates, formed from acid-driven reactions of isoprene epoxydiols (IEPOX), a key oxidation product, are important contributors to SOA mass. To date, most studies have focused on organosulfate formation on ammonium sulfate particles at low pH. However, recent work has shown sea spray aerosol (SSA) in the accumulation mode (~100 nm) is often quite acidic (pH ~ 2) and IEPOX-derived organosulfates have been identified in marine environments. Herein, we demonstrate that substantial SOA, including organosulfates, are formed on acidic sodium sulfate particles (pH = 1.3), representative of marine aerosol heterogeneously reacting with H2SO4 to form Na2SO4. For acidic sodium and ammonium sulfate particles, 31 and 28% (±1%), respectively, of inorganic sulfate is incorporated into organosulfate species, even though acidic particles with sodium versus ammonium as the primary cation formed 5% (±0.2) less SOA volume and 45% (±6%) less methyltetrol sulfates, suggesting other organosulfates may form. Even though both exhibited core-shell morphology after IEPOX uptake, physicochemical differences were observed via Raman microspectroscopy, with organosulfates identified in both the core and shell of acidic ammonium sulfate SOA particles, but only in the core for acidic sodium sulfate SOA via Raman microspectroscopy. Our results suggest that isoprene-derived SOA formed on aged SSA is potentially an important, but underappreciated, source of SOA and organosulfates in marine and coastal regions and could modify SOA budgets in these environments.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
2001027
NSF-PAR ID:
10392027
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
AAAR 40th Annual Conference
Format(s):
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Oxidation of isoprene, the biogenic volatile organic compound with the highest emissions globally, is a large source of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) in the atmosphere. Organosulfates, particularly methyltetrol sulfates formed from acid-driven reactions of the oxidation product isoprene epoxydiol (IEPOX) onto particulate sulfate, are important contributors to SOA mass. To date, most studies have focused on organosulfate formation on ammonium sulfate particles at low pH. However, recent work has shown that sea spray aerosol (SSA) in the accumulation mode (~100 nm) is often quite acidic (pH ~ 2). Marine biota are well-established sources of isoprene, with annual global oceanic fluxes of isoprene estimated to range from 1-12 Tg, and IEPOX-derived organosulfates have been identified in marine environments. Herein, we demonstrate that substantial SOA, including organosulfates, are formed on acidic sodium sulfate particles, representative of marine aerosol heterogeneously reacting with H2SO4 to form Na2SO4. We compare SOA formed from the reactive uptake of IEPOX onto particulate sulfate and find that the cation (sodium vs. ammonium) impacts the physical properties and chemical composition of the SOA formed. Additionally, we investigate the formation of SOA derived from sodium sulfate based on key properties including particle acidity and the extent of exposure to oxidation via OH radicals. Our results suggest that isoprene-derived SOA formed on aged SSA is potentially an important, but underappreciated, source of SOA and organosulfates in marine and coastal regions and could modify SOA budgets and composition in these environments. 
    more » « less
  2. In isoprene‐rich regions, acid‐catalyzed multiphase reactions of isoprene epoxydiols (IEPOX) with inorganic sulfate (Sulfinorg) particles form secondary organic aerosol (IEPOX‐SOA), extensively converting Sulfinorg to lowervolatility particulate organosulfates (OSs), including 2‐ methyltetrol sulfates (2‐MTSs) and their dimers. Recently, we showed that heterogeneous hydroxyl radical (OH) oxidation of particulate 2‐MTSs generated multifunctional OS products. However, atmospheric models assume that OS‐rich IEPOX‐SOA particles remain unreactive towards heterogeneous OH oxidation, and limited laboratory studies have been conducted to examine the heterogeneous OH oxidation kinetics of full IEPOX‐SOA mixtures. Hence, this study investigated the kinetics and products resulting from heterogeneous OH oxidation of freshly‐generated IEPOXSOA in order to help derive model‐ready parameterizations. First, gas‐phase IEPOX was reacted with acidic Sulfinorg particles under dark conditions in order to form fresh IEPOX‐SOA particles. These particles were then subsequently aged at RH of 56% in an oxidation flow reactor at OH exposures ranging from 0~15 days of equivalent atmospheric exposure. Aged IEPOX‐SOA particles were sampled by an online aerosol chemical speciation monitor (ACSM) and collected onto Teflon filters for off‐line molecular‐level chemical analyses by hydrophilic liquid interaction chromatography method interfaced to electrospray ionization high‐resolution quadrupole time‐offlight mass spectrometry (HILIC/ESI‐HR‐QTOFMS). Our results show that heterogeneous OH oxidation only caused a 7% decay of IEPOX‐SOA by 10 days exposure, likely owing to the inhibition of reactive uptake of OH as fresh IEPOXSOA particles have an inorganic core‐organic shell morphology. A significantly higher fraction of IEPOX‐SOA (~37%) decayed by 15 days exposure, likely due to the increasing reactive uptake of OH as IEPOX‐SOA become more liquid‐like with aging. Freshly‐generated IEPOX‐SOA constituents exhibited varying degrees of aging with 2‐MTSdimers being the most reactive, followed by 2‐MTSs and 2‐ methyltetrols (2‐MTs), respectively. Notably, extensive amounts of previously characterized particle‐phase products in ambient fine aerosols were detected in our laboratory‐aged IEPOX‐SOA samples. 
    more » « less
  3. Isoprene is one of the most common biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOC) in the atmosphere, produced by many plants. Isoprene undergoes oxidation to form gaseous isoprene epoxydiols (IEPOX) under low-NOx conditions, which can lead to the formation of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) particles. SOA-containing particles affect climate by scattering and absorbing solar radiation or acting as cloud condensation nuclei (CCN). High concentrations of SOA are also associated with adverse health impacts in people. While in the atmosphere, IEPOX SOA particles continue to undergo reactions with atmospheric oxidants, including hydroxyl radical (OH). To isolate and probe this process, we studied atmospheric chemical processes in an aerosol chamber to better understand the evolution of heterogeneous OH oxidation of IEPOX-derived SOA particles. Since very little is understood about the structural and spectroscopic properties because of the complexity of their many sources and atmospheric processing, individual particle measurements are necessary to provide better understanding of the composition of IEPOX SOA. We injected particles composed of mixtures of ammonium sulfate and sulfuric acid across a range of acidities(PH = 0.5 – 2.5) and gas-phase IEPOX into the chamber to generate SOA. The SOA particles were then sent to an oxidation flow reactor, and exposed to different OH concentrations representative of aging of a number of days. We kept relative humidity (RH) constant at ~65%, the temperature was ~23 °C, and levels of oxidation were controlled by adjusting lamp intensity. After oxidized SOA was impacted on quartz substrates, we used single-particle Raman microspectroscopy to identify their functional group compositions. From the Raman vibrational spectra of submicron particles (~500-1000 nm aerodynamic diameter), we observed a distinct difference in core-shell morphology and composition: an organic outer layer and an aqueous-inorganic core. The core also has significantly more CH-stretch than the shell. Small changes were also observed with increasing oxidation, which are important to consider when predicting SOA particle evolution in the atmosphere. 
    more » « less
  4. Isoprene has a strong effect on the oxidative capacity of the troposphere due to its abundance. Under low-NOx conditions, isoprene oxidizes to form isoprene-derived epoxydiols (IEPOX), contributing significantly to secondary organic aerosol (SOA) through heterogeneous reactions. In particular, organosulfates (OSs) can form from acid-driven reactive uptake of IEPOX onto preexisting particles followed by nucleophilic addition of inorganic sulfate, and they are an important component of SOA mass, primarily in submicron particles with long atmospheric lifetimes. Fundamental understanding of SOA and OS evolution in particles, including the formation of new compounds by oxidation as well as corresponding viscosity changes, is limited, particularly across relative humidity (RH) conditions above and below the deliquescence of typical sulfate aerosol particles. In a 2-m3 indoor chamber held at various RH values (30 – 80%), SOA was generated from reactive uptake of gas-phase IEPOX onto acidic ammonium sulfate aerosols (pH = 0.5 – 2.5) and then aged in an oxidation flow reactor (OFR) for 0 – 24 days of equivalent atmospheric ·OH exposure. We investigated the extent of inorganic sulfate conversion to organosulfate, formation of oligomers, single-particle physicochemical properties, such as viscosity and phase state, and oxidation kinetics. Chemical composition of particle-phase species, as well as aerosol morphological changes, are analyzed as a function of RH, oxidant exposure times, and particle acidity to better understand SOA and OS formation and destruction mechanisms in the ambient atmosphere. 
    more » « less
  5. Atmospheric aerosols significantly offset positive radiative forcing due to their contributions as cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) and ice nucleating particles (INPs). The cloud-aerosol-precipitation interactions in the atmosphere are determined by physical and chemical properties of aerosol particles, which can undergo many cycles of droplet activation and subsequent drying before dry or wet deposition from the atmosphere. Secondary organic aerosol (SOA) is an abundant class of aerosol and has been previously shown to contribute to aerosol formed from cloud processing. Isoprene-derived secondary organic aerosol SOA (iSOA) is a particularly important class of aerosol involved in cloud processing. iSOA has both soluble and insoluble components, but there has been a measurement gap in characterizing the insoluble components, as most analyses have focused on soluble components. These measurements are needed as previous research has suggested that insoluble components could be important with respect to CCN and INP formation. Herein, we analyze the insoluble components of SOA generated from the reactive uptake of IEPOX onto acidic seed particles (ammonium sulfate + sulfuric acid at different ratios for different pH conditions) in an atmospheric chamber. We characterize the size distributions and chemical composition, using NanoParticle Tracking Analysis (NTA), Raman microspectroscopy and atomic force microscopy infrared (AFM-IR) spectroscopy as a function of sulfate aerosol seed pH. These insights may help understand aerosol properties after cloud cycling in the atmosphere. 
    more » « less