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3:30 p.m.

AOSC Seminar by Dr. Akua Asa-Awuku, 2/04/2021

AOSC Seminar

Dr. Akua Asa-Awuku


UMD Dept. of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Title: Understanding multi-phase chemistry in the growth of atmospheric droplets



Aerosols, or particles, emitted into the air have adverse effects for regional air quality and health.  In addition, aerosols significantly impact earth’s climate and the hydrological cycle. They can directly reflect the amount of incoming solar radiation into space; by acting as cloud condensation nuclei (CCN), they can indirectly impact climate by affecting cloud albedo. Our current assessment of the interactions of aerosols and clouds is uncertain and parameters used to estimate cloud droplet formation in global climate models are not well constrained. Understanding the chemical and thermodynamic properties that control the ability of particles to form droplets, CCN activity, and droplet growth are necessary for constraining impacts on particle transport, particle inhalation, the hydrological cycle and uncertainties from the aerosol indirect effect.   In this presentation, we discuss the role of  aerosol, gas-phase, and multi-phase chemistry for the condensation of water-vapor on aerosol seeds. Fundamental parameters that affect aerosol formation and droplet growth from unique sources and diverse environments are discussed.




Dr. Akua Asa-Awuku is an Associate Professor at the University of Maryland, College Park. She received her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2008.   She also earned her M.S in Chemical Engineering at Georgia Tech in 2006.  She received her B.S in Chemical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2003.  In 2008, Dr. Asa-Awuku served as a Camille and Henry Dreyfus Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for Atmospheric Particle Studies and Chemical Engineering Department at Carnegie Mellon University.  She is a recipient of an NSF CAREER Award and EPA-STAR Grants.   Dr. Asa-Awuku's primary research interest is understanding and predicting aerosol sources and interactions with water.  Her research explores the water-uptake of complex particles as it pertains to aerosol hygroscopicity


Paper 1: Vizenor, A. E., and A. A. Asa-Awuku. "Gas-phase kinetics modifies the CCN activity of a biogenic SOA." Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 20.9 (2018): 6591-6597. https://doi.org/10.1039/C8CP00075A


Paper 2. Barati, Farima, Qi Yao, and Akua A. Asa-Awuku. "Insight into the Role of Water-Soluble Organic Solvents for the Cloud Condensation Nuclei Activation of Cholesterol." ACS Earth and Space Chemistry 3.9 (2019): 1697-1705. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsearthspacechem.9b00161


Contact: Ross  Salawitch

AOSC Seminar

Pre-seminar refreshment: N/A
Seminar: 3:30-4:30pm, Zoom
Meet-the-Speaker: 4:30-5:00pm, Zoom [For AOSC Students only]

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