AOSC Seminar by Dr. Olga Mayol, 2/25/2021
Dr. Olga Mayol
Atmospheric Chemistry and Aerosol Research (ACAR)
Department of Environmental Science, University of Puerto Rico – Río Piedras
Title: From the Amazon to Godzilla: Exploring Aerosols Throughout the Tropics
Aerosol particles can have profound effectsin a variety of processes that affect our livesincluding climate, weather, public health, visibility, and ecosystems. Their impact on the atmosphere is still considered as one of the most significant and uncertain aspects of climate change projections. The interactions among aerosols, clouds, and precipitation are arguably one of the most important research topics for climate research in the tropics. However, limited in-situ data has impeded progress. This has been the driving force of the research activities in my group.
My research efforts have been largely directed towards the better understanding of the chemical, microphysical, and radiative properties of atmospheric aerosols and their impact on clouds, precipitation, climate, and air quality in tropical regions. From the Brazilian Amazon Basin, to the Maldives, and the Greater Caribbean Basin, in this talk I present the scientific questions that my collaborators and I have pursued and some of our key findings. I emphasize our recent work in the Caribbean, including the devastating impact Hurricane María had on our field stations in Puerto Rico, and our subsequent recovery, having now more robust and powerful stations both in terms of the infrastructure and the state-of-the-art instrumentation. Furthermore, I highlight two of our most recent projects, the Air Quality Monitoring After Hurricane Impact, where we showed how backup power generators degraded air quality in Puerto Rico in the aftermath of hurricane Maria; and the NASA ROSES, Caribbean Air-quality aLert and Management Assistance System – Public Health (CALIMA-PH). In CALIMA-PH we integrate ground-based observations (insitu and remotely sensed), satellite remote sensing, and dust forecast models to better understand the impacts of African dust incursions, such as last summer’s historic “Godzilla” mega dust event, have on the air quality of the Greater Caribbean Basin and southern United States. I conclude by sharing some of my efforts to train the next generation of aerosol scientists (students and early career scientists) in the Latin America and Caribbean region.
Contact: Russ Dickerson
Pre-seminar refreshment: N/A
Seminar: 3:30-4:30pm, Zoom
Meet-the-Speaker: 4:30-5:00pm, Zoom [For AOSC Students only]