HYDERABAD: A recent study by the University of Hyderabad (UoH) claims that there is a frequent formation of aerosols, smaller than 3 nanometres in size, at several locations in Hyderabad. The UoH study says that this is of critical importance as a major fraction of these newly formed particles can reach sizes of cloud condensation nuclei and have climatic impacts.
Aerosols are tiny solid or liquid particles suspended in the atmosphere. The formation of small molecular clusters of sub-3 nm and their growth to large sizes is called atmospheric new particle formation. NPF occurs everywhere in the terrestrial troposphere, and therefore it is a large source of aerosol. Though it has been extensively studied globally, it is largely unexplored in India.
Dr Vijay Kanawade and Mathew Sebastian from the University of Hyderabad measured the neutral sub-3nm particle concentrations at various urban locations in India and reported the formation rate of small molecular clusters, for the first time, in sub-3 nm size regime, where aerosol nucleation triggers. Dr Jeff Pierce from Colorado State University, USA was also part of this study.