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19 September 2017
Researchers at the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ Geophysical Institute are exploring the changing chemistry of the Arctic’s atmosphere to help answer the question of what happens as snow and ice begin to melt. The research is concerned with the Arctic’s reactive bromine season, the period of time when bromine is consuming ozone, producing bromine monoxide and oxidizing mercury.
31 August 2017
A new study shows microphones suspended from helium balloons in the stratosphere can detect low-frequency sounds from ocean waves. The new method shows promise for detecting acoustic signals from natural disasters and nuclear explosions that cannot always be reliably detected by sensors on the ground, according to the study’s authors.
24 March 2017
A new study shows U.S. methane emissions did not grow significantly from 2000 to 2013 and are not likely to have been an important driver of the increase in atmospheric methane levels observed worldwide after 2007, as other studies have suggested. The new study provides additional insight into a question that has puzzled scientists for the past decade: what has been causing the increase in global methane levels since 2007?
1 February 2017
Dust released by an active coal mine in Svalbard, Norway reduced the spectral reflectance of nearby snow and ice by up to 84 percent, according to new research.
25 January 2017
Late spring and early summer is when the air quality is generally good across most of the United States. But newly published research details how a common springtime weather pattern and pollution transported from Asia often conspire to create unhealthy ozone levels for the desert southwest. The new study adds to a growing body of work that explores how ozone can occasionally push some areas of the desert southwest above federal air quality standards.
16 November 2016
New research finds that as the climate warms, Earth’s atmosphere could trap more volcanic and plumes in the troposphere, the lower part of the atmosphere where weather happens. Volcanic aerosols that stay in the troposphere get washed out by precipitation in days or weeks.
18 October 2016
New research suggests “flash droughts” — like the one that unexpectedly gripped the Southern Rockies and Midwest in the summer of 2012 — could be predicted months in advance using soil moisture and snowpack data. Researchers analyzed the conditions leading up to the 2012 drought, which ultimately caused $30 billion in economic losses, looking for any warning signs that a drought was on the way.
13 October 2016
Grass and crop fires can emit more of certain types of hazardous fumes than wood fires, a new study finds. Results from the study could help scientists better understand the dangers from fire emissions, allowing firefighters or individuals close to a fire to react more appropriately, according to the study’s authors.
19 September 2016
A deep sea fishing rod is probably not the first tool that comes to mind when thinking about how to study air pollution in a remote inland desert, but it’s the heart of a new system that has given scientists a minute-by-minute look at how quickly the sun can convert oil and gas emissions to harmful ground-level ozone.
1 September 2016
The simultaneous occurrence of warm winters in the West and cold winters in the East has significantly increased in recent decades. The damaging and costly phenomenon is very likely attributable to human-caused climate change, according to a new study.
30 August 2016
Plumes of wildfire smoke envelop and alter clouds, potentially affecting local weather, according to new research based on serendipitous airborne measurements of clouds in smoke from Canadian fires. The new data confirms clouds embedded in smoke are likely to warm up the atmosphere around clouds, causing the clouds to dissipate faster.
8 August 2016
The first peer-reviewed study to directly quantify how emissions from oil and gas activities influence summertime ozone pollution in the Colorado Front Range confirms that chemical vapors from oil and gas activities are a significant contributor to the region’s chronic ozone problem.
11 May 2016
Researchers found that 275,000 tons of methane leak from the Bakken oil and gas field each year, similar to the emission rate found for another oil-producing region, Colorado’s Denver-Julesburg Basin. That’s the finding of the first field study measuring emissions of this potent greenhouse gas from the Bakken, which spans parts of North Dakota and Montana.