• A personal note on IGBP and the social sciences

    Humans are an integral component of the Earth system as conceptualised by IGBP. João Morais recalls key milestones in IGBP’s engagement with the social sciences and offers some words of advice for Future Earth.
  • IGBP and Earth observation:
    a co-evolution

    The iconic images of Earth beamed back by the earliest spacecraft helped to galvanise interest in our planet’s environment. The subsequent evolution and development of satellites for Earth observation has been intricately linked with that of IGBP and other global-change research programmes, write Jack Kaye and Cat Downy .

Multiphase halogen chemistry in the tropical Atlantic Ocean

Environmental Science & Technology (2012)

Sommariva R and von Glasow, R

DOI: 10.1021/es300209f

Vol 46, Issue 19, pp 10429-10437


We used a one-dimensional model to simulate the chemical evolution of air masses in the tropical Atlantic Ocean, with a focus on halogen chemistry. The model results were compared to the observations of inorganic halogen species made in this region. The model could largely reproduce the measurements of most chlorine species, especially under unpolluted conditions, but overestimated sea salt chloride, BrCl, and bromine species. Agreement with the measurements could be improved by taking into account the reactivity with aldehydes and the effects of dimethyl sulfide (DMS) and Saharan dust on aerosol pH; a hypothetical HOX → X– aqueous-phase reaction could also improve the agreement with measured Cl2 and HOCl, especially under semipolluted conditions. The results also showed that halogens speciation and concentrations are very sensitive to cloud processing. The model was used to calculate the impact of the observed levels of halogens: Cl atoms accounted for 5.4–11.6% of total methane sinks and halogens (mostly bromine and iodine) accounted for 35–40% of total ozone destruction.

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