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Newsletter December 2020

The NOSA newsletter is aimed at strengthening the collaboration between its members in the Nordic society. This is facilitated by sharing information about events and conferences, updates on work opportunities and highlighting selected scientific breakthroughs, thereby benefiting NOSA research partners and peers. The guest for the interview is Michael Schulz who describes his recent work Earth System Models.

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NOSA Updates

Work Opportunities 
Science Highlights 
ECS Corner 
Interview with Michael Schulz

NOSA Updates

The annual NOSA assembly took place on November 25. At the assembly, NOSA president Risto Makkonen gave a report of the last year. Three new board members were elected for the main board and for the Early Career Scientist Board (ECS) five new members were elected. The new board members are Marianne Trondstad Lund from Center for International Climate Research, Norway, Jonas Elm from Aarhus University, Denmark, and Jenni Kontkanen from University of Helsinki, Finland. The new ECS board members are Janne Lampilahti from University of Helsinki, Finland, Kine Onsum Moseid from Norwegian Meteorological Institute, Norway, Madeleine Petersson Sjögren from Lund University, Sweden, Manish Kumar from Stockholm University, Sweden, and Robert Oscar David from University of Oslo, Norway. 

The NOSA symposium 2021 has been moved online due to the COVID-19 situation. The symposium will include plenary talks, tutorials, 15 min presentations as well as flash presentations of posters.

Find more at the NOSA webpage.  

Congratulations to Nønne Prisle on the Aerosologist Award 2020!

At the NOSA annual assembly, the Aerosologist Award was awarded to Associate Professor Nønne Prisle. Already, as a graduate student Nønne explored Nordic collaborations and visited University of Eastern Finland in Kuopio as part of her master thesis work at Copenhagen University. Nønne has since then encouraged Nordic collaborations and frequently travels to other universities to start new collaborations. Nønne’s research focuses on aerosol surface chemistry and she has been one of the pioneers in developing applications of synchrotron methods for aerosol research. Nønne is an Academy of Finland Research Fellow and coordinates several projects funded by Academy of Finland and a European Research Council (ERC) grant under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 programme. In addition, Nønne is proud to participate in aerosol science and as the quotation on her webpage states “You may never know what results come of your actions, but if you do nothing, there will be no results.” - Mahatma Gandhi, she is passionate about exploring new possibilities. Congratulations on the Aerosologist Award!
For more of Nønne’s work, watch this short video, visit her group web page, listen to the podcast by Intronauts ‘4 - Why having your head in the clouds is a good thing’ or read this small comic book. You can also follow the work of her or her group on twitter @Nonne_Prisle or @OuluBeamTeam.



The NOSA Symposium 2021 will be held virtually on March 15 to 17, 2021. Keep an eye for the opening of abstract submission.

Making sense of climate change futures - a workshop on artistic representation and modelling. March 9, 2021 More info at The Climaginaries project. If you find this interesting and want to learn more or want to help shape the workshop, please contact Alexandra Nikoleris.

The Climaginaries project invites everyone who uses and develops climate models to a workshop together with a group of artists (writers, film makers, painters, photographers, etc.) to explore how different modes of representing climate change and its impact on ecosystems are produced, used, and how they engage different constituencies. What can we learn from each other in terms of storytelling techniques, outreach and meaning creation?



American Meteorological Society (AMS) annual meeting, virtual, January 10-15. Find it here.

European Geosciences Union (EGU) General Assembly, virtual, April 19-30. Find it here

A Molecular Level Understanding of Atmospheric Aerosols (MUOAA 2020), May 23-28, 2021. Find it here

ETH-Conference on Combustion Generated Nanoparticles, June 21-24, 2021. Find more here

European Aerosol Conference (EAC) 2021, August 30 - September 3. Find it here

International Global Atmospheric Chemistry (IGAC) Science Conference, virtual, September 2021. Find it here

Frontiers in Atmospheric Chemistry Seminar Series, Virtual, 29 January - 16 April 2021. Find more information here.  

Virtual INP Colloquium - Ice particle researchers meet virtually once a month, For access and to join the mailing list reach out to either, or Find more information here.

Work Opportunities

Lund University
PhD position in Climate Modelling.
Deadline for application: January 10, 2021

Stockholm University
PhD position in Environmental Science focusing on the chemical composition of marine aerosol.
Deadline for application: January 15, 2021

For up-to-date positions, follow @AtmChemAeroJobs on Twitter

Science Highlights 

Frequent new particle formation over the high Arctic pack ice by enhanced iodine emissions
Baccarini et al, (2020)
In remote regions, such as the arctic, new particle formation (NPF) can be an important source of cloud condensation nuclei, which can influence cloud radiative properties. Here it is shown that iodic acid likely plays a key role in the formation of new particles in the Arctic. Furthermore, cloud droplet residuals from the study area indicate that particles smaller than 30 nm, which are associated with NPF, can act as CCN. Thus, iodine NPF could influence cloud properties over the Arctic Ocean. Read more here.

Evaluation of climate model aerosol trends with ground-based observations over the last 2 decades – an AeroCom and CMIP6 analysis
Mortier et al, (2020)
Aerosols particle influence human health and the climate through direct, semidirect and indirect effects. Thus, understanding trends in aerosol number and associated parameters is critical for understanding future climate warming. However, accurate measurements of aerosols are challenging especially in remote and developing regions. Models can help evaluate trends in regional and global aerosols, especially where observations are currently lacking or unreliable. When models are co-located in time and space with aerosol observations, they tend to accurately predict aerosol trends. Thus, models can be used to assess global aerosol trends, especially in poorly monitored regions. Read more here.

ECS Corner

Sigurd Christiansen received the internationalisation postdoc scholarship from the Carlsberg Foundation. The project is titled: What are Arctic clouds made of?”. Sigurd did his PhD with Prof. Merete Bilde focusing on CCN and sea spray aerosols. Sigurd will join ACES at Stockholm University, mostly working together with Ass. Prof. Paul Zieger on Arctic aerosols.

The goal of this project is to understand what Arctic clouds are made of. Using tools and methodologies from the fields of physics, chemistry and meteorology, they will explore experimentally and in detail the microphysical and chemical properties of particles that act as nuclei for low-level Arctic clouds. In most previous work in the Arctic, cloud properties were probed artificially by activating aerosol particles. However, it is possible to study cloud forming properties directly inside clouds, by measuring what remains from cloud particles (droplets and ice crystals) when dried. These so-called cloud residuals can be separated from unactivated aerosol particles using a counter-flow virtual impactor (CVI) inlet. Additionally, they will group and investigate various aerosol particle types and appoint their likely sources using back-trajectories.

Interview with Michael Schulz

By Kine Onsum Moseid
Hi Michael Schulz! Could you please tell us about your research at METNorway? 
Hi NOSA! My research concerns the role of aerosols in climate evolution. We are using our own earth system model called NorESM2, and we do a lot on model evaluation. 
We try to synthesise our evaluation so that we can give feedback into the development of climate- and aerosol models through big projects like: INES, Aerocom, AerChemMIP, Copernicus programs (CAMS). We also use evaluation to further develop our own models NorESM2 and EMEP. 

What are the most pressing questions in your field?
I think the aerosol models are not constrained enough, and they have too much freedom to choose any parametrization they want. 
For example - if you look at recent results from the project Aerocom - we find that the models are diverse in all aspects of the aerosol life cycle. This means you can almost choose which model you want, as there is no “best model”. 
I think a big question is: after 20 years of aerosol research, why are the models still so diverse? 

Interesting - so what is at the top of your Christmas wishlist related to your research?
Since we are talking aerosols - I would like to get to a state where the aerosol community exchanges code in a way where you have a “modular” aerosol model. 
Imagine that each earth system model had the option to choose between aerosol parametrization from all of the aerosol community. 
This way you could test the seasalt configuration from a group in Stockholm for example, or make use of an advanced dust parametrization from a group at Princeton University. 
I would like for you to be able test your pick of an aerosol parameterization in NorESM2, or in ECHAM, or within the earth system model you wanted - but we are not there yet. 

From wishful thinking to real life - what are you most excited about in the research year of 2021?
There are attempts to better understand the history of aerosol forcing using many different observational datasets. From ice cores to visibility, optical depth, and deposition.
To synthesise that would give us a better understanding of aerosol forcing and in turn make the models better. 

Finally - are you doing anything related to covid?
Yes! We have analyzed forecast runs from EMEP and the European CAM ensemble, and compared both NO2 and PM concentrations. We also looked at AOD anomalies from Aeronet, and have run NorESM2 with covid scenarios with colleagues from the UK.
At the moment we think the aerosol load was probably reduced, but to quite small amounts so it is difficult to detect the signal from covid. I think that these covid simulations and observations will be an exciting result in the coming months for sure.

Find more about Michael Schulz' work here
If you have content you wish to have featured in the NOSA Newsletter, please send
 an e-mail to or contact one of the editor of this issue. 

Manish Kumar
Copyright © 2020 Nordic Society for Aerosol Research, All rights reserved.


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