Atmospheric observations of new particle growth and shrinkage

Li Hao Young, Shan Hu Lee, Vijay P. Kanawade, Ta Chih Hsiao, Yungling L. Lee, Bing Fang Hwang, Yi Jyun Liou, Hui Tsung Hsu, Peng-Chi Tsai

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Citation (Scopus)


In subtropical central Taiwan, a total of fourteen new particle formation (NPF) events were identified at four sites that represent urban, coastal, mountain and downwind area, respectively. Among them, there were five particle shrinkage events showing the grown particles shrank back to the smallest measureable size of ∼10 nm, thereby creating a unique "arch-like" shape in the size distribution contour plot. The particle shrinkage rates ranged from 5.1 to 7.6 nm h -1 . The corresponding particle volume losses suggest that a notable fraction of the condensable species that contributed to growth was semi-volatile. The particle shrinkage was related to strong atmospheric dilution, high ambient temperature and low relative humidity, thus favoring the evaporation of semi-volatile species from the particulate phase to the gas phase. Our observations show that the new particle growth could be a reversible process, in which the evaporating semi-volatile species are important for the growth of new particles to sizes of environmental health concerns.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNucleation and Atmospheric Aerosols - 19th International Conference
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 2013 May 14
Event19th International Conference on Nucleation and Atmospheric Aerosols, ICNAA 2013 - Fort Collins, CO, United States
Duration: 2013 Jun 232013 Jun 28

Publication series

NameAIP Conference Proceedings
ISSN (Print)0094-243X
ISSN (Electronic)1551-7616


Other19th International Conference on Nucleation and Atmospheric Aerosols, ICNAA 2013
CountryUnited States
CityFort Collins, CO

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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