J6.3 The Global Atmospheric Loading of Dust Aerosols

Tuesday, 12 January 2016: 9:15 AM
Room 356 ( New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center)
Jasper F. Kok, University of California, Los Angeles, CA; and D. A. Ridley, K. Haustein, R. L. Miller, and C. Zhao

Mineral dust is one of the most ubiquitous aerosols in the atmosphere, with important effects on human health and the climate system. But despite its importance, the global atmospheric loading of dust has remained uncertain, with model results spanning about a factor of five. Here we constrain the particle size-resolved atmospheric dust loading and global emission rate, using a novel theoretical framework that uses experimental constraints on the optical properties and size distribution of dust to eliminate climate model errors due to assumed dust properties. We find that most climate models underestimate the global atmospheric loading and emission rate of dust aerosols.
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